Since 1924, the Roosevelt Hotel has been a witness to history.
The New York City landmark was the election headquarters for Gov. Thomas Dewey when he incorrectly announced he defeated Harry Truman in the 1948 presidential election. It has served as the backdrop for movies such as “The Irishman” and it helped start a New Year’s Eve tradition.
A fixture of the Manhattan skyline, the hotel boasts elegant architecture and is minutes away from Times Square and Grand Central Terminal.
But now, The Roosevelt Hotel will no longer bear witness to motion pictures or moments in history.
The hotel will permanently close its doors this year, a spokesperson told CNN in a statement.
The Roosevelt Hotel, owned by Pakistan International Airlines, cited the coronavirus pandemic and the ensuing drop in business as the principal reasons it will cease operations.
“Due to the current, unprecedented environment and the continued uncertain impact from COVID-19, the owners of The Roosevelt Hotel have made the difficult decision to close the hotel and the associates were notified this week,” the statement read. “The iconic hotel, along with most of New York City, has experienced very low demand and as a result the hotel will cease operations before the end of the year. There are currently no plans for the building beyond the scheduled closing.”
The coronavirus has devastated the hospitality industry, forcing many hotels around the country to take drastic steps to survive. Occupancy rates have reached new lows and many employees in the industry have been furloughed or laid off.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the US leisure and hospitality industry lost 7.5 million jobs in April and, since then, only about half of those jobs have been added back.
In addition, a survey by the American Hotel Lodging Association found that 74% of US hotels say more layoffs are coming if the industry doesn’t get additional federal assistance.
Named after President Theodore Roosevelt, the hotel has also been seen in films including “Maid in Manhattan,” “Malcolm X” and “Wall Street.”
In addition, it was at the Roosevelt Hotel Grill in 1929 where Guy Lombardo first broadcast “Auld Lang Syne” on New Year’s Eve.