Before the Empire State Building, There Was a Hotel at 5th Avenue and 34th Street
Here's a fun fact for today: Did you know that the original Waldorf-Astoria Hotel was in the spot where the Empire State Building now stands? It's true! The first version of the ritzy hotel was a combination of the Waldorf and the Astoria Hotels at 5th Avenue and 33rd/34th Streets, which stood and welcomed the most well-heeled guests from 1893 to 1929, when it was knocked down to begin the skyscraper ESB we now know and love.
You won't hear much about that first building of some 1,300 rooms (with bidets) unless you pick a nice documentary from your Netflix queue; we recommend "Modern Marvels: The Empire State Building."
Of course, history is history and we all know that the Waldorf-Astoria found a new home further uptown, in its art deco digs at Park Avenue and 50th Street. Craving a little more NYC hotel history? Check out our category for it.