Hotel Seville and Lower Madison Avenue

fullsizerender-59

“During the last ten years Madison Avenue has undergone a very great change. It was formerly one of the fashionable districts for residence purposes, second only to Fifth Avenue in its desirability, especially in the section south of Forty-second Street. With the rapid improvement of Fourth Avenue and also the development of Fifth Avenue, a number of the owners of Madison Avenue properties realized that it could be improved to advantage with high-class commercial structures.”

This was the lead from a June 1, 1913, New York Times article that bore the headline, “Rapid change from a social centre to a section of small, high-class shops.”

The article went on to quote Lawrence B. Elliman of the firm Pease & Elliman, who said “In the section between Twenty-third and Thirty-fourth Streets, the private character of the section has practically disappeared and there are only a very few of the old residents still occupying their homes in this district.”

While it may be difficult to imagine a Madison Avenue of private homes and estates, such was the character of the neighborhood at the turn of the 20th Century. Among the first buildings to herald a change to a more commercial character was the Hotel Seville. Completed in 1904 at Madison and 29th Street, the hotel still stands there today, though it was renamed the Carlton in 1987.  Continue reading

Advertisements