By Terry Trucco
Earlier this year Le Parker Meridien was forced to close its stylish Knave café for a month. A freak accident at a construction site next door broke a wall and soaked the floor with liquid concrete, startling early morning guests sipping espressos and nibbling croissants.
Yesterday the hotel was once again a casualty of a construction mishap at another building. (Hurricane Sandy had a hand in this one.) As widely reported, a giant crane at the new One57 luxury apartment high rise came loose during the storm and was left dangling precariously over 57th Street – across the street from Le Parker Meridien. Amid concerns that the crane could come crashing down — or swing into hotel room windows, hotel guests were forced to evacuate. The hotel is empty until further notice. (Two nearby hotels, the smaller Salisbury and West 57th Street by Hilton Club, were also evacuated.)
When will Le Parker Meridien reopen? It’s up to the city, but it won’t be Wednesday or Thursday, a desk attendant told us when we called. “We’ve got food, we’ve got electricity, we’re chomping at the bit, but they have to remove that lovely crane,” he said.
High winds have prevented the crane from being secured, but it may still be days once the winds die down. Mayor Michael Bloomberg said engineers will most likely need to build another crane to secure it.
The irony can’t be lost on Le Parker Meridien. The construction site next door that drowned the Knave in concrete is for a new high-rise hotel, the Willow. And One57? Yes, it’s main tenants are multi-million dollar apartments. But the building will also be home to the new Park Hyatt New York hotel – yet another high-rise competitor for Le Parker Meridien.