By Terry Trucco
Anyone who has seen the movie Taxi Driver knows that Times Square wasn’t always a desirable location for a hotel. But that was a long time ago. Now even hotels that aren’t all that close to Times Square are adding the spot-where-the-New-Year’s-Eve-ball-drops to their name.
The latest Times Square pretender is the Sheraton New York Hotel, which today augmented its name to become the Sheraton New York Times Square Hotel – even though the hotel is ten blocks north of the Times Square’s throbbing heart, where Broadway, Seventh Avenue and 42nd Street meet.
At least you can see Times Square from the Sheraton. The same cannot be said for the TRYP New York Times Square South, which is a lot closer to Madison Square Garden and Penn Station than Times Square.
Why the rush to claim a spot in Times Square’s magnetic field? It’s the internet’s fault. (Isn’t everything?) In his announcement to the hotel’s 1,020-member staff, General Manager Mark Sanders said, “In today’s age of online travel searches, . . . adding Times Square to our name gives a nod to our central location in the heart of the Times Square Business District.”
The Sheraton, in fact, has a splendid location with easy access to Rockefeller Center and scores of midtown businesses, restaurants and shops. As for proximity to Times Square, let’s just say it’s in the general vicinity.