Been-Seen logo

Hotels We Like

Not-so-plain Jane

Me Tarzan, You Jane.....................(thejane3.jpg)

No 113 Jane Street in New York’s West Village is an address with history. Designed by William Alciphron Boring, the man who also created Ellis Island’s immigrant station, it opened in 1908 as the American Seamen’s Friend Society Sailors’ Home and Institute. Rooms mimicked cabins, and in 1912 they (rather eerily) housed survivors of the Titanic disaster.

Me Tarzan, You Jane.....................(thejanestitch.jpg)

The building became the Seaman’s Relief Center, then the YMCA, then the down-at-heel Hotel Riverview (which housed the Jane Street Theater). In the Eighties and Nineties, it became a hub of bohemian events such as the off-Broadway production of Hedwig and the Angry Inch and the Million Dollar Club.

Me Tarzan, You Jane.....................(thejane7.jpg)

Last year, the Riverview underwent major restoration and reopened as The Jane. This new hotel continues the building’s reputation as a bolthole for those with ‘more dash than cash’.

Me Tarzan, You Jane.....................(thejane10.jpg)

Rooms are quirky (wood-paneled, mirrored, with luggage racks) and inexpensive ($100 or so), but tiny (no cat-swinging here). By all accounts, you pay for the experience of staying there. Swing out of bed, try not to hit the wall, catch the cranked elevator downstairs, nod hello to the staff dressed in period clothing, then make your way down to the ballroom.

Me Tarzan, You Jane.....................(thejane8.jpg)

It’s a vision of retro splendor, like some kind of French courtesan’s boudoir, and is the place to celeb spot these days (apparently the Olsen twins invested in it, ooh la la).

Me Tarzan, You Jane.....................(thejane.jpg)

Apparently previous tenants of the building are less than happy at their flophouse being gentrified, but reviewers rave about the place. RM

Me Tarzan, You Jane.....................(thejane9.jpg)

Back to 'Hotels We Like'

    Any comments?