LIFE AT THE TOP: INSIDE NEW YORK'S GRAND HOTELS by Ward Morehouse III
Author Ward Morehouse III, a columnist for AM New York, former columnist for the New York Sun and the New York Post and a staff correspondent for 10 years for the Christian Science Monitor, briefly chronicles the lives of many of the 20th Century's literary and artistic giants who lived at the Plaza, Waldorf-Astoria, Algonquin, St. Regis, Carlyle, Chelsea and many other hotels. Morehouse paints a unique portrait of their glamorous, exciting, touching and sometimes tragic lives in the golden era of New York hotels and theater, bringing the two worlds together in a work that reads like great fiction. He reconfirms his status as a superb chronicler of Americana as well as one of our most engaging storytellers.
Praise for "Life at the Top" includes the following comments:
"Ward Morehouse III's fabulous take on New York's greatest hotels reads like the legendary stories of Damon Runyon. He breathes new life into these wonderful old metropolitan inns and the colorful characters that inhabited them."
- Bill Hoffmann, New York Post
"There is no one more qualified to write about New York's grand hotels than Ward Morehouse III, having been reared in two of the grandest whose histories he would later write. An eminent theater critic who has hotels and their lore as a hobby, Morehouse is able to bring the Big Apple's glamorous ( or once glamorous) hostelries to life, mixing history with delicious gossip and amusing anecdotes that only an insider would be privy to. Luxury hotels provide a heightened sense of life and fun for the rich and famous as well as the ordinary guest, and Morehouse catches the excitement of the hotel as playground perfectly." - Frederick M. Winship, Critic-at-Large for United Press International.
"Not since the great Ziegfeld has anyone assembled as glittering a cast as can be found in Ward Morehouse III's 'Life at the Top: Inside New York's Grand Hotels.' It reads like heaven's guest-book."
- Alan Farnham, Senior Editor, Forbes Magazine
Among the many stories Morehouse relates in his forthcoming work:
* Novelist J.D. Salinger's life as a secret agent New York before going overseas during World War II and his colleagues' secret rendezvous in the Dixie Hotel on West 43rd Street across from The New York Times headquarters.
* Life close-up for the Texas oil baron who bought his wife the famed Algonquin Hotel for $1 million and lived there in an apartment occupying half the hotel's 10th floor half a century.
* Details of how in 1913 gangster Rosy Rosenthal was killed in a hail of machinegun bullets as he stepped outside the dining room of the old Metropol Hotel, now the Casablanca, to become the nation's first "drive-by shooting."
* Some of Presidents John F. Kennedy an Harry S. Truman's private moments at the Carlyle Hotel.
* How "Big Julie," a nightclub owner who lived at the San Carlos Hotel, transformed a homeless waif into a top model.
* How singer and "White Christmas" Rosemary Clooney spent her favorite Christmas with her family as the Plaza Hotel.
* How Broadway and Hollywood star Ann Miller used to flood her room at the Mayflower hotel on a regular basis when she started on Broadway with Mickey Rooney in "Sugar Babies" -- and would be literally stranded on her bed with water many inches deep around it.
* How Princess Diana befriended the employees of the Carlyle Hotel who she felt looked after her so well she wanted to live there eventually.
Ward Morehouse III, a former staff correspondent for The Christian Science Monitor for 10 years, was the chief theater columnist for the New York Post for five years, and wrote his "Boadway After Dark" column for the New York Sun for two years and it is currently carried in am New York. He is the author of four other books and two plays, "If It Was Easy" (Performing Arts Books) which was produced off-Broadway in 2001 and "The Actors" which ran for nince months off-Broadway in 1986-87. The New York Times SUNDAY BOOK REVIEW SECTION had this to day of Mr. Morheouse's book, "The Waldorf-Astoria: America's Gilded Dream."
"The grand cities of the world have their grand hotels, the bed-and-breakfasts for the mighty and moneyed. Ward Morehouse III explores one of New York City's grandest in 'The Waldorf-Astoria: America's Gilded Dream' ... Morehouse writes of pleasures and scandals, of the hard facts of running a hotel and of its romance. The hotel comes off well in the hands of its appreciative Boswell and one will find 'The Waldorf-Astoria' to be a pleasant buffet."