The Hotel Chelsea, once home to playwrights Arthur Miller and Thomas Wolfe, is up for sale.

When it was built in 1883, Hotel Chelsea was the first co-op apartment building in New York City, and the building served as both a 101-unit co-op and 125-room hotel. Throughout its history, it has housed musicians like Bob Dylan, Janis Joplin, and Jimi Hendrix, and it was also infamous for the death of Dylan Thomas and the stabbing of Nancy Spungen allegedly by her boyfriend Sid Vicious of the Sex Pistols.

Hotel Chelsea shareholder and board member Paul Brounstein told the Associated Press, “It is time to let a new owner, with perhaps some new innovative ideas and resources, to re-energise and revitalize the Chelsea.”

Some residents like Tim Sullivan are anxious about the sale, warning potential buyers, “They’re going to have to deal with a hundred people who have lived here 30 years, and we don’t take too lightly to, you know, turning it into a McDonald’s.” Other residents like David Linter aren’t as worried. When asked how he felt about potential changes, Linter shrugged his shoulders and replied, “I’m sure that’ll affect me, but that’s okay by me. I don’t mind being affected by things. I just go with it, you know? I’m a ‘60s guy. I go with the flow.”

To take a look inside the Hotel Chelsea, check out the Associated Press’ video and interviews with residents at, and read more about the Hotel Chelsea’s history on the building’s website at Also, you can check out other residential buildings in Chelsea at Neighborhood NYC at


New York City can be a really fun place for adults to party on Halloween, but trick-or-treating for families can get a little tricky. Some neighborhoods and buildings make more of an effort to welcome trick-or-treaters, and it is important for parents to know these neighborhoods ahead of time so they don’t waste time and the kids have good memories (and a bag full of candy) at the end of the night.

Mommy Poppins, a fantastic website for New York parents, has experience with New York Halloweens, and they have trick-or-treating spots all over the city from Chelsea to the Upper West Side and out to Brooklyn and Queens. We couldn’t do a better job than they did, so we encourage our parent readers out there to check out their Halloween neighborhood list at

For our readers that don’t have kids or don’t want to go trick-or-treating, never fear. This week, Neighborhood NYC will be featuring the best Halloween events in Manhattan and Brooklyn, and believe us when we say that Neighborhood NYC’s Halloween coverage will have something for everyone.

Check out Mommy Poppins, and comment below with your favorite spots to trick-or-treat in Manhattan, Queens, and Brooklyn!

Dylan McDermott, best recognized for his starring role on TV’s The Practice, has purchased a one-bedroom apartment in Chelsea.

The $701,000 apartment comes with a large kitchen, living room with fireplace, and a balcony. Location-wise, McDermott will be a few blocks from the popular Upright Citizen’s Brigade Theatre, the Joyce Theatre, and Benjamin James Real Estate’s main Chelsea location.

Welcome to the neighborhood, Dylan! We love Chelsea, and we know that you will too!

To view residential buildings in the Chelsea area, go to, and to view buildings in other neighborhoods, check out our informational website Neighborhood NYC at

Yesterday, the blog USA Photos Pictures published a post entitled “The Twenty Hilarious Historic Photos of New York City.” We loved the nostalgic look back at our great city, and we wanted to share the article.

Featured neighborhoods include the Lower East Side, Gramercy, Midtown East, Greenwich Village, and Chelsea.

To view the original article, click here or go to

To read more about apartment buildings in these featured neighborhoods and more areas of Manhattan, check out our informational website Neighborhood NYC at

When the iPhone 4 was released June 24th, a lot of people lost their minds. All three of the official Apple Stores in Manhattan had lines around the block from their Midtown East location at 767 Fifth Avenue to their Chelsea location at 401 West 14th Street and their Upper West Side location at 1981 Broadway.

Problems with the iPhone emboldened competitors like the Google Nexus One, the HTC Evo 4G, the Blackberry Bold 9700, and the HTC Droid Eris, and everything from special phone covers to duct tape has offered a solution to the antenna problem.

One product that has been selling particularly well has been the Antenna-aid produced by Brooklyn designers Szymon Weglarski and Jon Dorfman. A six-pack sells for $4.99 from their website Their tongue-in-cheek ad claims that the Antenna-aid is “colorful,” “works like magic,” and is so revolutionary that “Ben Franklin would approve.”

To find out more about the Antenna-aid, click here or go to

Check out Benjamin James Real Estate’s informational website Neighborhood NYC at

The Night Before Christmas

Tis the season to honor a great scholar and former West Chelsea Resident, Clement Clarke Moore, author of the very well known poem, “Twas The Night Before Christmas”. In the historic area of West Chelsea, a New York City Park is named after Moore, a renowned professor of literature at Columbia University in the 1800’s.

In the historic district of West Chelsea, one can find beautiful townhouses and brownstones many having been restored to their original grandeur.  This lovely neighborhood, spans blocks which are home to countless artists, galleries, art dealers, and restaurants. West Chelsea continues to be one of the most desirable areas to live in Manhattan.

Another point of interest in West Chelsea; The High Line, which runs the length of West Chelsea is not only unique, but is also one of the loveliest parks in Manhattan and an enjoyable way to see this great neighborhood. Strolling above Tenth Avenue on the High Line, enjoy a birds’ eye view of West Chelsea, the surrounding Manhattan skyline and beautiful views of the Hudson River. Stroll through this historic district, visit art galleries such as Gagosian, Matthew Marks, and Sonnabend, or walk a few minutes south to the Meatpacking District for a wonderful assortment of designer fashion boutiques such as Stella McCartney, Christian Louboutin, Micheal Kors and many others.
Happy holidays to all and to all a joyful new year!
Catherine Adams

Denny Heller, a real estate agent here at Benjamin James had a little “gossip” today:

Hope to shop you soon!

Have I got some scoop! I heard from a reliable source that Trader Joe was in talks to open a store at 675 Sixth Ave at 21st street. This would be so great because the only grocery store in Chelsea is on 7th and 8th ave in the 20’s and nothing in central Chelsea. Not only would it be good for the residents but great for Benjamin James traffic as well as residents in 21Chelsea. (building where Benjamin James office is located)

You can view more info here and give us a call when you are ready to view an apartment or inquire about availability.

Benjamin James is the exclusive on-site broker for this building. 

Our contact info is here:

stone glass towerAt a rental industry event today in Midtown Manhattan, executives from a major landlord with over 2000 residential rental units in Manhattan acknowledged a market recovery in its early stages. They talked about how they are responding to higher occupancy rates, more consumer traffic, and rental incentives that have fueled the declined rental market over the past year.  In the most prime locations, owner-paid broker commissions (also known as OPs) and free rent incentives are being taken back, leaving tenants to pay today’s market prices without the benefit of “net effective” rents.  This also puts the responsibility for the broker fee back in the tenant’s court.

This landlord, who graciously sent three of its top brass to discuss the marketplace with rental managers and principal brokers from the most notable brokerage companies in Manhattan, noted that the one sweet spot in the city for consumers to capture bargains is Midtown West.  They, along with Silverstein, Rockrose and Glenwood, have added hundreds of new residential units in the Hudson Yards district – with more now under construction.  Consumers can continue to expect the big discounts, bargain prices, free rent incentives and owner paid fees in this neighborhood for the foreseeable future.

It is interesting that since October 1, our listings department has identified major landlords such as Rockrose/TF Cornerstone, Archstone, Related Management, and Equity Residential, who have removed owner paid commissions and free rent incentives in prime neighborhoods such as Chelsea, Greenwich Village, TriBeCa and even the Financial District (in some cases).  Other major landlords continue to pay brokers and give discounts; however, the four landlords mentioned here account for more than 10,000 residential rental units in Manhattan.  It is clear that a change is underway.street lamps and beaux arts building

This new disparity in the changing market makes it more important than ever for consumers to identify a good broker / agent and stick with them.  We offer a unique perspective on the marketplace, as we keep up with which landlords are offering the best values, and where the definitions of value are changing.  While it might seem like a good use of time for a consumer to canvas each of the major landlord portfolios in search of bargains and discounts, a simple phone call to a reputable broker could yield the same information in a single conversation thus saving you time and we all know “time is money”.

The Milan

The Milan

The Milan, a 15 story doorman building at 120 West 23rd Street, has come to the end of its leasing campaign.  The building’s plans for condominium conversion were well underway until financing regulations changed for FHA insured mortgages in the spring.  Although the building had negotiated enough contracts to convert to condominium, the lack of viable financing finally prevented the conversion to condo.  On July 5, Benjamin James announced the newly renovated would-be condo units were offered for rental, and the units have been 95% rented.  With just two units remaining for rent and construction on the major renovations nearly complete, the leasing campaign draws to a conclusion.

The apartments include a collection of Junior 1 Bedroom and 2 Bedroom / 2 Bathroom homes that have been gut renovated.  The new units, designed for condo sale, feature open layouts, floor to ceiling windows, SubZero kitchens and custom stone tile baths.  The Milan had been known in the rental community for its prominent late 1980’s design aesthetic.  The design changed with this major renovation, and kitchens were opened up, black lacquer cabinets replaced by solid core maple, parquet floors were replaced by oak strip, and marble baths with Jacuzzi tubs were replaced with sandstone tile and Kohler sinks and tubs.  The common hallways were also renovated on the first seven floors.

Junior 1 Bedrooms rented between $2600 and $2995 per month.  The 2 Bedrooms rented between $4200 and $4650 per month.  The currently remaining units were used as models during the sales and leasing campaign, and represent some of the best for light, view and outdoor space.  Currently, these Junior 1 Bedrooms are on the market for $2750 and $2950.

Inquiries may be directed to 877 645 2623

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