The hotel was built in 1928-1929, and cost a whopping five million dollars. As if Prohibition wasn't hard enough on hotels, the Lex opened just in time for the Crash. When we see these great edifices today, we never see the sweating, miserable faces of the investors who'd pooled their moolah to put this thing up.

It survived, as the great hotels of New York always did. The next few pages are taken from a 1930s brochure.