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Answered 2008-06-03 11:15:58

From its 1913 completion until it was converted to apartments in 1965, this was the Vanderbilt Hotel, one of the city's most fashionable in the early 20th Century. Singer Enrico Caruso lived here in 1920 and 1921, his last U.S. home. The Vanderbilt Hotel was purchased by the Manger Hotel chain in 1941 and was the headquarters of the Manger chain from 1941-1966 when it was sold. The Vanderbilt was renamed the Manger-Vanderbilt and was one of the premeir hotel properties of the Manger chain which was a leading privately owned national hotel chain at the time. Underneath this building is Wolfgang's Steakhouse, run by the Wolfgang Zwiener, who was the legendary headwaiter at Peter Luger's for 40 years (though he got his start at Luchow's). The space, recently called Vanderbilt Station, was famous as the Della Robbia Bar, aka The Crypt. The vaulted Gaustavino ceiling is the big claim to fame. The rumor that this used to be Commodore Vanderbilt's secret private subway station seems not to be true.

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