Perhaps I need to have a serious consultation with a shrink, but it has for some time been my dream to live in a hotel.
After all, why not?
For many, hotels serve as a home away from home – albeit one that involves daily maid service, room service and various forms of pampering that one may not find at home. Almost like a magical oasis of sorts.
Throughout the ages, many writers, artists, actors, and eccentric millionaires were afforded the opportunity to call hotels, “home”. They are the grown up versions of the fictional Eloise who had enjoyed many adventures (along with a healthy dose of mischief) at the Plaza Hotel in New York. For them, it is not merely an oxymoron.
Those who have engaged in hotel living have ranged from the famous to the infamous. From the wealthiest, to the poorest – such as the creative types that dwell in hotels such as the Chelsea Hotel, forming a very unique community that they call “The Last Outpost of Bohemia”. (They even run a blog titled called, “Living with Legends: Hotel Chelsea Blog”).
What is it that lures individuals away from traditional dwellings and into the seemingly transient hotels: Is it that sense of being removed from the everyday life? Is it the ability to control your environment? Is it the knowledge that no matter how bad your neighbors might be, soon you’ll have new ones? Is it the sense that anything can happen and you can meet just about anyone? Is it the sense of history that echoes from the walls? Or more importantly: is it the quality of the chocolate mints placed on the pillow each night?
Historically, many artists (of all varieties) enjoyed the comforts and inspiration of hotel living. Here are just a few of the more famous variety:
* Arthur Hailey wrote his bestselling novel, the aptly named HOTEL, at the venerable old Royal York Hotel in Toronto (where I have stayed on a few occasions).
* Keanu Reeves lived at the Chateau Marmont in Los Angeles for 14 years.
*Johnny Depp lived at the Chateau Marmont for 4 years.
* Robert DeNiro lived in the penthouse at the Chateau Marmont for 2 years.
* Warren Beatty lived at the Beverly Wilshire for 10 years.
* James Woods still lives in L’ermitage in Los Angeles after 4 years.
* Magician Criss Angel lives in the top of the pyramid shaped Luxor Hotel in Las Vegas.
* The Hilton children grew up in the Waldorf-Astoria
* Residents of the Chelsea Hotel include too many names to mention – including my favorite: Leonard Cohen, a plaque for whom now hangs at the hotel’s entrance along with Bob Dylan’s, Thomas Wolfe’s, and one for Arthur Miller, too.
* Manet lived in his suite in the Savoy in London and painted the Thames from his window.
* Greta Garbo, who was notoriously private, lived in a suite in the Miramar in Santa Monica for years.
* Billionaire Howard Hughes spent several of the last years of his life moving from one hotel penthouse to another, from Mexico to Vancouver.
* Coco Chanel lived in the Hotel Ritz in Paris for 30+ years.
* Vladimir Nabokov spent his final (17?) years at Le Montreux Palace in Switzerland
* Thomas Mann wrote “Death in Venice” at the Lido’s Hotel Des Bains.
* Joseph Conrad spent a lot of time in Bangkok’s Mandarin Oriental
* Noel Coward wrote “Private Lives” in Shanghai’s Cathay Hotel
* Cary Grant lived for 12 years at the Warwick Hotel in Manhattan
* Ernest Hemingway lived between 1932 to 1939 in the Hotel Ambos Mundos in Cuba and wrote For Whom The Bell Tolls there.
So why not me too?
Copyright © 2011 Katherine Brodsky. All rights reserved and may not be copied, distributed, reprinted, or used in any other manner without written permission.