Everyone knows and loves The Chelsea Hotel. Or, at least, as it was.
The hotel began having widely-publicized management troubles in 2007, signs of change to come; the building was sold in 2011, and is currently “under renovation and restoration” scheduled to reopen in 2017.
Ed Hamilton chronicled – from the inside – the struggles between existing long-time residents and management at the Living with Legends: Hotel Chelsea Blog, started in 2005. He has also written about neighborhood gentrification, including this great piece about “The High Line Giveaway.” The blog is sporadically updated currently but Hamilton says “that can change at any time.”
That doesn’t mean the long-time Chelsea Hotel resident has been idle. In 2007, Hamilton released the well-received book, Legends of the Chelsea Hotel: Living with Artists and Outlaws in New York’s Rebel Mecca.
Recently, the author and blogger turned his focus to The Chintz Age, the title of his new book, where “Everything is cheaper and chintzier than in the past, from consumer products to culture itself. Our great cities, and, in particular, New York, are being transformed as we speak, as rising rents squeeze out the artists and bohemians who honed and burnished the city’s glittering cutting edge. So should we look backward in teary-eyed nostalgia for the glorious past, or grit our teeth and move forward, accepting the inevitability of change in order to carve out a place for ourselves in this Brave New New York?”
A work of fiction, The Chintz Age consists of seven stories and a novella. Hamilton will be making two Village appearances, East and West, to discuss the book. Both events are free.
This Wednesday, February 10th, 6:30 p.m., steps from the park. A book talk at The Salmagundi Club presented by the Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation. 47 Fifth Avenue at 12th Street. RSVP required. Currently, the event is at capacity but check with GVSHP, just in case.
Thursday, February 18th, 7:00 pm – Appearance at KGB Bar, 85 East 4th St, as part of the “Drunken Careening Writers” series, hosted by Kathleen Warnock.