Joseph Chetrit has taken out a $150 million loan to help pay for his acquisition of the Hotel Carter at 250 W 43rd Street in Manhattan. He picked up the nefarious property, known as a flophouse, last year for $192 million.
The mortgage was taken out from the Delaware based life insurance company Athene Annuity.
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If he wants to maintain the property as a hotel, Chetrit is expected to have to spend at least $125 million on safety upgrades and renovations to its infrastructure just to bring it up to 3.5 star status. TripAdvisor Inc. named it the dirtiest hotel in the U.S., three different times citing cockroaches, bedbugs and strange odors.
It was also notorious for being unsafe as the hotel was riddled by petty crime and drug users.
Located on 43rd Street in Times Square, the hotel was built in 1930, was designed by architect Emery Roth and has 700 rooms. The building is a converted flophouse.
Its website states: “Enjoy the warm hospitality and service at the Hotel Carter, a unique, inviting departure from traditional hotels in Manhattan. With 700 rooms, all with private baths, you’ll get a close up view of New York City’s Time Square. You can even catch the spectacular ball drop on New Year’s”
But it seems that today the old hotel does not have very many luxurious amenities to offer its guests, which is why it needs to emphasize the convenience of its location. People need to pay extra for Wi-Fi and hairdryers and its website boasts that all rooms come with private baths, as if that is still a luxury for a hotel in the 21st Century.
But as the saying goes, “location, location, location.” Which explains why Chetrit was one of more than two dozen bidders for the hotel, including Aby Rosen. Hotel occupancy in the Times Square area has been keeping at a steady rate of 90%.
It is not yet clear what the new owner plans to do with the property which could be converted into condominiums or a mixed use building.