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The Algonquin Cat

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  Site Where: 59 West 44th Street [map], New York, ny, United States, 10036
July 31, 2006 at 9:58 AM | by | ()

Leave it NPR to cover the antithesis to the Hotel Dog trend...the Hotel Cat.

At the Algonquin Hotel in New York, Matilda rules the lobby and even has her own miniature chaise lounge to sit upon. The 11-year-old Birman, "an exotic breed that resembles a fluffy Siamese" is indeed a star at the hotel.

But the in-house cat is not a new thing here. The tradition reportedly dates back to 1930s when the hotel's general manager at the time adopted a stray cat that had wandered in one day. Hamlet, as actor John Barrymore named him, lived the life--drinking milk out of a champagne glass. After Hamlet, boy Algonquin cats were also named Hamlet and females, Matilda.

The hotel cat has been memorialized in a children's book and a 24-karat gold pendant. And like other hotel pets, you can email Matilda (the account is ghostwritten by the hotel's admin asst.) However, you can't "rent" Matilda out while you are there like you can do with some hotel dogs.

So hotels now have birds, dogs, goldfish and cats as their  hotel ambassadors. Now, they just need some sort of reptile to round out the line-up. Snakes in a Hotel!

Related Stories:
· The Algonquin Hotel's Feline Celebrity [NPR]
· Algonquin hotel reviews [TripAdvisor]

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