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The Harlem Flophouse, New York, USA
This elegant 1890s brownstone building in a tranquil street in the heart of Harlem was originally a single-family home, becoming a lodging house in 1917. At that time an inexpensive place to stay for artists, musicians, writers, transient workers and the homeless, by the time playwright and artist Rene Calvo took it on in 2000 it was in a bad state of repair. Lovingly restored, it is now a unique, inexpensive guest house taking guests back to the 1920s and 1930s in charming rooms that are full of character, with antique wallpapers and furniture. Slightly rough around the edges, it's not for everyone. Bathrooms are shared, there are no TVs, air conditioning, reception or concierge, restaurant and bar. However, you will be hard-pressed to stay in such a unique, characterful building that will be memorable for years to come. It's no surprise that it has hosted numerous music and fashion photoshoots.
You'll be staying in a charming, tranquil residential street yet with the liveliness of central Manhattan just minutes away by subway.
Visit the National Jazz Musuem, or take a 15-minute stroll down Adam Clayton Powell Jr Boulevard to reach Central Park.
By plane: flights from London, Manchester or Edinburgh to New York take 7 hours. It's a 40-minute drive from JFK airport. Parking costs $20 per day. skyscanner.net
Style & Character
The hotel suits artistic and creative types wanting something different from the norm, who appreciate sacrificing a few modern comforts for a unique stay. The place oozes character at every turn.
Service & Facilities
This is such an original, remarkable place to stay.
- Shared lounge
- Free Wi-Fi
Children are welcome and those aged under 12 are free. Room capacities are a maximum of three with an exception for toddlers and infants. A cot with linen can be provided for no extra charge upon request.
All rooms are unique in character. The décor is also unique and special, with classy patterned vintage wallpaper and charming antique furniture. It's like staying in a 1930s hotel.
Thelonious Monk, Cozy Cole, Corky Hale, Chester Himes
Facilities include: shared bathroom, fan, radio, free Wi-Fi
Food & Drink
There is no restaurant or food/drink provided.
Nearby: for breakfast, the Harlem Breakfast Club offers takeaway options, including sandwiches and pancakes. Other local eateries include soul food restaurant Manna's, Babbalucci for Italian, and French bistro Maison Harlem.