One of the standard features of Hiatus Week, for some peculiar reason I can't quite figure out, is Hotels. Oh, I know: I love hotels. Let's be honest, though - the old hotels had great common spaces and lousy rooms with few amenities. I've stayed in refurbished old hotels and they're always a disappointment.
But no one went to New York or Chicago to sit in their room, did they? I'm sure a few got a bottle of Golden Wedding and sat in the room drinking and listening to the radio, but the lobby was where the action was, the bar for a quiet toot, the restaurant for a nice meal on the company tab.
The postcard record of these places is enormous.
This is an update to the GRAND HOTELS site, lifted here and repurposed as Hiatal Copy. Behold:
This is interesting for all sorts of reasons. At the postcard show I found a sheaf of Brevoorts, perhaps assembled by the sort of completist drawn to the thing we call "collecting."
The Brevoort went up in 1906, and was quite the gilded joint. Let's take a look inside.
The Dining Room, aka the Mural Room. I'm sure it was ever so civilized, but let's just say the accoustics might have been a bit . . bright.
The Corner Room, for somewhat semi-private dining. Is that a fan up in the corner?
Close-up o the mural. Long lost, I expect.
To all hotels a little remodeling must come. Or a lot.
More after the ad.
The Marine Bar. It certainly gave the place a more modern appeal, but the ceiling and the floor were working hard to make the case for the first few decades of the century.
Post remodeling: The bar doesn't say 1906 anymore. It says some impossibly far-flung distant year, like 1960!
Another lobby shot, demonstrating how one could sit in the chairs and judge the backside of everyone who came in.
One hell of an old bar; they were smart enough not to modernize that.
Chairs by Minecraft!
Rooms were less work for the designer when they didn't have to worry about the placement of the television set.
Your heart may sag a bit when you think this is all gone. But . . .
The building still exists, remodeled in the ealy 60s for office use. How do we know the bones of the Brevoort slumber beneath the glass?
There's one hint.
Do you see it?
And now, our pallid Lance Substitute:
If you're starting to think this might be accomplished in a single panel comic, you're almost right.
The answer awaits on Friday. Go ahead and ruin it for yourself and EVERYONE if you must, but you'll be missing the point of recreating the old newspaper experience!
One more thing: since I laid out this page, I found three more Breevort shots - and they're spectactular. They're here.