"From street level, the nondescript door hardly looks like a hotel entrance. But up a narrow stairway, you'll find one of bargain lodging's best-kept secrets. Two years ago, owners Ted an Claudia Howard transformed the former hot-sheets transient hotel (Madonna lived here before her big break) into a charming, funky find facing Madison Square Garden. The clientele is largely youthful and European; the flavor, decidedly arty. A small second floor lobby is painted a cheerful yellow with blue cityscapes and glass brick; sounds of a fountain echo through industrial-chic hallways of pressed tin and exposed brick."
"...artist Rob Graf designed each [room] with a unique theme. The Shakespeare Room's walls are lined with sonnets and gray velvet swags; the Orbit Room's deep blue walls and ceilings glow with fluorescent stars at night. Baths are clean and new, with gray slate and black marble; all are shared (generally one shower and two toilets per six-room floor). All the rooms have TVs.
"...light sleepers might want a room facing away from Eighth Avenue. Décor varies dramatically, so get a room list ahead of time and choose one to suit your taste."
"Suites with baths are available in the building next door..."
Arthur Frommer's Budget Travel September/October/November 2000