When the Plaza was sold in 2004 and transformed thereafter from The Greatest Hotel of All Time into The Greatest Condo Conversion of All Time, among the jewels rechristened was the storied Oak Room restaurant. Like the hotel itself, the place had grown fusty, and it was out to attract a whole new generation of glamour. But like the hotel itself, which was dogged by bad renovations, lawsuits and vomit, the restaurant barely got off the ground, churning out bad food and worse reviews.
Now, as the hotel tries to live up to the early hype–it recently robbed rival 15 Central Park West of the condo record–management is looking to do the same with the Oak Room. By booting its proprietors out. It turns out, the only way to get anyone through those ornately carved doors was a boozy brunch for uptown brats, an off-shoot of a Hamptons rager. According to The Times, it was the only profitable event the Oak Room’s operators had come up with. The neighbors, Charlie Sheen not withstanding, did not taking kindly to the throbbing bass lines and firecracker champagne.
In court papers, the Plaza’s owners said the music booming from the parties disrupted the hotel’s residents and guests. They also said the Oak Room owed more than $900,000 in back rent, had poor Zagat ratings, fared poorly in health and safety inspections and had a “corrosive effect on the Plaza Hotel/Oak Room” brand.
Is this really not the vibe the Plaza is going for?