Monday, May 19, 2014

El Quixote is a Gem

I'd been hearing about this place for years.  FINALLY tried it today for lunch...

Amazing ambience from a Bygone era... Like the 1930s.

In the Chelsea Hotel,  which is undergoing major renovations.

Hoping this gem remains untouched.

Reasonable too. Service excellent!

Go!

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

http://ny.eater.com/archives/2014/06/hotel_chelsea_acquires_84yearold_staple_el_quijote.php

El Quijote, the charming and perennially popular Spanish restaurant on the ground floor of the Hotel Chelsea, is in the process of being acquired by Chelsea Hotels, the new company that owns the building. Chelsea Hotels was formerly known as King & Grove, but owner Ed Scheetz decided to rebrand both his group and all of its individual properties earlier this year. Back in 2011, real estate scion Joseph Chetrit purchased the historic hotel and partnered with Scheetz with plans for a revamp. Some people feared that the new owners of the building would evict the aging restaurant or force it out, but Scheetz split with Chetrit last year and now his company announces that it is acquiring the restaurant with plans to keep it alive.
A rep for Chelsea Hotels says the new owners will "retain the signature look and feel of El Quijote" while "maintaining its authenticity." The company also claims that they will keep the same staff and the same food. Scheetz and his cronies better make good on their word because the nostalgists of this city would be sad and angry if the new owners ruined this place. In his Who Goes There? post from 2012, Brooks of Sheffield noted: "El Quijote is a calming place. The ceilings are high and the lights are low. The waiters wear black jackets, and the muzak soundtrack never ventures past the hit parade of 1960."

It's unclear if El Quijote's proprietor Manny Ramirez will continue to run the restaurant, or if he simply sold his business to the new company. But a statement about the acquisition notes that the deal was made "with longtime owner Manny Ramirez's blessing." Stay tuned for more details as they become available.
UPDATE: A rep sends word that Manny Ramirez will "still be involved," and the restaurant will be run as part of Ed Scheetz's new hotel.
· All Coverage of El Quijote [~ENY~]

Anonymous said...

http://www.dnainfo.com/new-york/20140618/chelsea/hotel-chelsea-buys-beloved-el-quijote-restaurant

Hotel Chelsea Buys Beloved El Quijote Restaurant
By Mathew Katz on June 18, 2014 11:49am
@MathewKatz
Chelsea Hotels CEO Ed Scheetz, left, bought El Quijote from longtime owner Manny Ramirez, right. Chelsea Hotels CEO Ed Scheetz, left, bought El Quijote from longtime owner Manny Ramirez, right. View Full Caption Chelsea Hotels
CHELSEA — The Hotel Chelsea's new owner is taking over El Quijote, the 84-year-old Spanish restaurant on the hotel's ground floor that is beloved by tenants and locals.

The landmark hotel's new owner, Chelsea Hotels CEO Ed Scheetz, bought the restaurant as part of the ongoing renovation at the Chelsea, a spokesman said. The sale was first reported by Eater.

"The overall goal is to retain the signature [classic Spanish] look and feel of El Quijote while maintaining its authenticity and history, which are already woven into that of Hotel Chelsea," said a spokesman, announcing the sale.

Longtime El Quijote owner Manny Ramirez supported the sale and will remain "very much involved" in the restaurant's operations, the spokesman said. The restaurant's classic menu, with specialties including paella and lobster in green sauce, will remain the same.

Ramirez could not immediately be reached for comment.

Chelsea Hotels declined to disclose the amount of the sale.

First opened in 1930, El Quijote has been a longtime meeting space for tenants, who frequently had meals there when organizing against former landlord Joseph Chetrit, who they said caused a multitude of problems while renovating the hotel. Since Chetrit bought the historic spot at 222 W. 23rd St. in 2011, rumors have swirled about an eventual closure of El Quijote.

Scheetz's Chelsea Hotels, formerly known as King & Grove, bought the hotel from Chetrit in August 2013 and will now take over the restaurant as well. The look of the space will largely remain the same, the spokesman said, but it may get some mechanical upgrades.

Anonymous said...

http://therealdeal.com/blog/2014/06/18/hotel-chelsea-owner-buys-el-quijote-restaurant/

The storied El Quijote restaurant is staying put following its sale to the Hotel Chelsea’s owner.
Chelsea Hotels CEO Ed Scheetz plans to incorporate the 84-year-old Spanish dining spot on the property’s ground floor into the Hotel Chelsea when it relaunches as a boutique hotel, DNAinfo reported. The company declined to disclose the selling price.
“The overall goal is to retain the signature [classic Spanish] look and feel of El Quijote while maintaining its authenticity and history, which are already woven into that of Hotel Chelsea,” a spokesman told the news site.
Chelsea Hotel will make mechanical upgrades but plans to keep current owner Manny Ramirez on board and preserve both the menu and atmosphere, according to the spokesperson.
For years, El Quijote has benefitted from a sweetheart lease that locked in below market-rate rent and contained a provision that bars the property’s owner from renting additional ground floor space to a competing restaurant.
Ed Scheetz took control of the Hotel Chelsea last year following a split with the Chetrit Group. [DNAinfo] — Tom DiChristopher
Tags: ed scheetz, hotel chelsea