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Historic Hotels / HotelChatter Interviews / Hotel Restaurants / Sheraton Hotels / Manhattan Hotels / DSK / Hotel Breakfast / → All Tags
Back in May, our resident hotel archivist JetSetCD posted scans of the very 1960s-looking Hotel Americana, which these days we all know as the Sheraton New York Hotel and Towers. And while plenty about the hotel has changed over the years, one thing that's remained constant is a particular server that's worked for the hotel since it opened in 1962.
Tilla Soeder came to the US from Germany in 1959 when she was 21 years old, and, on the advice from her aunt and uncle's neighbor, she applied for a job as a server at the soon-to-open Americana Hotel. The rest, as they say, is history...
HotelChatter: Do you still work here?
Tilla: I still work here. But right now I'm on sick leave, unfortunately.
HC: What is your favorite part about working here?
Tilla: My favorite part is the atmosphere, the connections we make with guests; it's just a big family. Yes, things get hectic, but that comes with the job. At least we don't get bored!
HC: How different was the hotel back in the 1950s?
Tilla: When I came, we had the Colombian Coffee House downstairs. That was such a popular restaurant, we seated 350 people each day. People would be waiting on the stairs when we opened in the morning: the line never stopped!
HC: Who used to have breakfast there?
Tilla: Business men would come and have breakfast down there because we had a public announcement system. They'd show up, put their name down, and every other second you would hear, for example, "Mr. Goldstein, would you come to the desk, please?" They just wanted to get their name called out in public—the business men loved it!
For more of the interview, read on below!
Hotel News / Hotel Housekeepers / Hotel Woes / Manhattan Hotels / DSK / Sofitels / Hotel Employees / → All Tags
The New York Times ran an interesting piece today on a contract reached between union members and the major NYC hotels that employ them. Among other tidbits, we learn that hotels will soon be providing employees with their own personal panic buttons.
The decision, clearly influenced by a certain scandal at Sofitel New York involving a certain IMF chief last year, is a sure victory for housekeepers and room-service waiters and waitresses everywhere.
As long as they don't get button-happy, of course, and start panicking every time a door slams shut. But still, the less we see of this kind of thing, the better.
A French news network has been the first to broadcast security camera footage from that fateful day at Sofitel New York. We admit, we pretty much stopped caring about this saga once we learned about the DSK hotel porno. But now, with hard video evidence, we feel compelled to look.
Not that the footage shows what actually happened in the room itself. Instead, what we get is a clip of Diallo sitting in a corridor (in the background, you can hear someone reporting a sexual assault over the phone), DSK checking out of the hotel, and perhaps most importantly, the controversial "celebratory dance" between two of the hotel's staffers. And yes, it still looks weird.
DSK / Sofitels / Manhattan Hotels / Hotel News / Hotel Woes / Hotel Security Footage / Hotel Sex / Hotel Employees / Hotel Dancing / → All Tags
An in-depth article published by The New York Review of Books recently laid out DSK's every move on the morning of May 14, 2011. Now, several news sources are now trying to figure out the meaning (if any) of a three-minute celebratory dance performed by Sofitel employees immediately after their colleague, Nafissatou Diallo, gave her testimony to police.
Apparently, there is footage of hotel staffers high-fiving each other right after Diallo's sexual assault charges were made official—as if they had 'pulled off' some kind of premeditated plot. Though the hotel released a statement saying the dance only "lasted eight seconds," and that it had nothing to do with DSK whatsoever, it is still unclear why they were frolicking in the first place.