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The Return of the Royalton: Then and Now

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The Royalton, about six weeks out from its grand reopening, was the consummate temple of cool in its first incarnation (pictured above). Ian Schrager opened it in 1988, but the design was such that even toward the end it didn't feel dated so much as just retro-cool. Its bathrooms are famous for ushering in the age of the urinal hidden in plain view—at Royalton, an aluminum wall and waterfall. The point is, we've always liked the place.

But that was then. If you're curious to see what's left of the place at present, have a look at these glorious construction photos, just into us from an intrepid, camera-toting correspondent. And -- semi-huge-reveal alert -- here's the note that came with: "I work on 44th street, snapped these on my blackberry camera of the re-vamp of the the lobby. There appears to be a huge fireplace and new bar..there was a massive crew at work and they quickly kicked me out."

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Did we mention that it's Royalton Day at Eater? Up next, we're going to bring you the full reveal on McDonald's Brasserie Forty-Four, the restaurant going into the new hotel. You're buckled in, yes?
· 44 Rechristened Brasserie Forty-Four, To Debut 10/3 [~E~]
· EaterWire: The Royalton Gets a Facelift [~E~]

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