Where Norman Avenue meets Henry Street in Greenpoint, in a building once filled with artists’ lofts, you’ll find the Henry Norman Hotel. B+B visited the hotel today, where workers meandered about, drills buzzed away, and the scent of paint fumes permeated the air.
Yesterday the hotel played host for the very first time, though with absolutely no fanfare. There was no grand opening, and Hotel Manager Jonathan Montpas estimated that only about seven people are currently checked in.
The building’s owner, Joe Torres, is the man behind nearby Box House Hotel– another industrial loft chic affair, which Montpas described as “very similar” to the Henry Norman. Torres acquired a bit of notoriety for ordering his tenants, artists and small businesses, to GTFO starting last September.
The architect behind the remodeling, Robert Scarano, whose notoriety precedes him, also casts a shadow on the sparkling new hotel. In 2008, the NYC Department of Buildings banned Scarano from filing any requests for building permits in the city and brought charges against him for submitting misleading photographs and inaccurate paperwork to the DOB. According to the DOB, this “result[ed] in the construction of two non-compliant buildings.” The ban was subsequently upheld in 2011. However building permits can still be filed on behalf of Scarano by other architects at his firm.
Henry Norman’s skeleton is a former warehouse built in the 19th century. It offers an enormous space filled with 52 rooms that are generously sized compared to, say, the new Ludlow Hotel. Though the exterior might lead you to mistake the place for a warehouse (assuming of course you have terrible vision) the interior maintains only a few hints to its lofty past– high ceilings, lots of natural light, and exposed brick and pipes in some of the rooms, and sprawling open spaces.
Some amenities are definitely still in the works, including a bar on the first floor that’s still coated in a faint-inducing lacquer. Montpas said the bar should be open by the end of the summer. A rooftop bar is also slated to open, though it might take a little longer to be completed.
The hotel sits directly across from a marble distribution center and semi-trucks rumbled down the street toward other industrial warehouses. It’s an awkward fit on the block, but for better or worse seems to be the shape of things to come for North Brooklyn.
Current prices for the hotel range from $189 per night for a standard loft (for $20 more HN throws in a terrace), all the way up to $699 per night for the two-bedroom penthouse on the fourth floor. This room includes an enormous deck with a pretty nice view of the city. Check out more images of the interior below.