Blue Bar Restaurant & Lounge is now open

gray concrete building
a glimpse intoThe Hotel

The Algonquin, an Autograph Collection Hotel

Located close to the bustling heart of Times Square and Fifth Avenue, this jewel of historic New York hotels has long entertained the city’s literary and cultural elite, as well as those who delight in creating their own unique stories.

old photograph of the Algonquin Hotel 1922

1902 The algonquin opens

The Algonquin opened on November 22, 1902. Single rooms cost $2 dollars a night while larger three-bedroom accommodations cost $10. The hotel was originally planned to be residential but found short term guests to be more profitable. Frank Case is the hotel’s first General Manager. He eventually buys the hotel and continues to run it until his death in 1946.

white chairs in Hotel Annex historic photo

1904 The annex

The two story horse stable next to the Algonquin was purchased. A year later the third floor was added. Over the years the annex housed a barber shop, apartments, a supper club, a rehearsal studio, and several different restaurants.

illustration of guests at the Round Table

1919 The round table’s first lunch

In the summer of 1919 a group of writers met in the Pergola Room for a party and came to have lunch at the Algonquin every day after that for the next 10 years. Frank Case moved them out into the main dining and the world was introduced for the Vicious Circle.

woman holding cat

1923 The first resident cat

Billy the cat was a very friendly feline that lived in the hotel for 15 years. Two days after his death a stray cat wandered in looking for food. Frank Case immediately adopted the cat and named him Rusty. He was eventually renamed Hamlet and begins the long lineage of cats that live in the hotel.

man wearing black hat illustration from the New Yorker

1925 The new yorker is founded

After winning a handsome amount of money in a poker game against other Round Table Members, Harold Ross finances and creates The New Yorker.

grayscale photo of old Blue Bar

1933 Blue Bar Opens

When prohibition ends Frank Case reopens the bar in the hotel. John Barrymore convinces Case to place blue gels over the lights as one looks more attractive under such lighting. The Blue Bar has been a part of the hotel since.

gray embossed sculpted artwork

1936 New york drama critics circle awards

On March 25, 1936 the members of the Critics Circle meet and argue for three hours in a room in the hotel trying to vote for a winner. A week later, during a dinner reception at The Algonquin, the award is presented to Maxwell Ansderson’s Winterset.

grayscale photo of Bodnes couple

1946 The bodne’s purchase the algonquin

In 1924, Ben and Mary Bodne honeymoon at The Algonquin and fall in love with the hotel. Ben promised his new bride he will buy it for her one day. When Frank Case passed away in 1946 and the hotel was put up for sale, Ben Bodne purchases the hotel fulfilling his promise.

old black and white photo of the Oak Room

1981 The oak room

The Oak Room opens as a cabaret bringing a new era to The Algonquin. The Oak Room launches the careers for Harry Connick Jr., Diana Krall, Michael Feinstein, Peter Cincotti and Andrea Marcovicci.

clear long-stem martini with engagement ring in the bottom

2004 The $10,000 martini

A young gentleman pops the question to his girlfriend in big style and purchases the first ever $10,000 Martini. He surprises her in the Blue Bar and she immediately accepts. When all is said and done the proposal cost almost $13,000.

two red pillows on sofa in hotel lobby

2012 The modern algonquin

The hotel closes for nine months and undergoes a complete top to bottom $5 million renovation. The hotel reopens with a stunning new look designed by famed designer Alexandra Champalimaud.

Exploring 44th Street

In Good Company

44th Street between Fifth and Sixth professes a rich social, theatrical and literary history, a culture that still thrives today.

“Legendary Algonquin manager and owner Frank Case enjoyed the company of actors and writers, and he was instrumental at positioning the hotel at the center of New York’s literary and theatrical life.”

– Condé Nast Traveller