It’s called The Liberty Inn. On an unassuming corner of West Street and 15th Street, it’s an oddly shaped triangular building, an old remnant of the Meatpacking District area’s former days as a shipping district and seafaring hotel. Built in 1906 by poultry wholesalers as the Strand Hotel, it got its current name in 1969. Aside from a red awning with ‘LIBERTY’ scrawled across the front in a faux-cursive type, there’s nothing particularly distinguishing about the place.
The Liberty Inn is an hourly hotel, meaning it rents its rooms out on an hourly rate, which means the people who check in are rarely looking for a place to spend the night. A place to spend an hour in the afternoon is a bit more realistic. It’s known as a sex hotel, though its owner has stated to The New York Times that they prefer the far tamer “romance hotel’ for discretion. What’s more is the building’s unconventional shape, occupying its own block on the Hudson River and no more than three feet wide at its thinnest point.
According to the website, it prides itself on cleanliness, professionalism, and an ability to stay current, even with high-end boutiques and places like the Chelsea Market and the Whitney Museum only a block away. It’s vending machines sell condoms and peanuts, and its room keys come complete with a bottle opener. There’s no sign of The Anvil, the gay sex club that was on the first floor until 1986.