Two Former Italian Soccer Stars Are Opening a Hotel Here

Hudson Square HotelUPDATE: I got all messed up about these permits and renderings (and I forgot to rewrite the blurb in the newsletter before it went out), so rather than wade through my mud-filled brain just skip the next few paragraphs and read from “Googling Hudson Square Hotel”—the lot in question is the funky little remnant at the northwest corner of Hudson and Canal, where that fugly electronic billboard was.

I was walking on Canal Street when I noticed that the funny little lot (219 Hudson) at the northwest corner of Canal and Hudson has plywood fencing around part of it. The permits posted are for the construction of a wooden fence, with no indication why such a fence would be necessary. Since that hideous electronic billboard is also dead, I assumed the lot is set to be developed as soon as soon as the building behind it is completed. That building, 2 Renwick, was to be two hotels, one with an entrance on Hudson and one on Renwick (one nice, one not).

Or so I thought. Or so was the plan? UPDATE: See below.

In July, a Department of Buildings permit was filed to add a story—from 10 to 11—to the building known by the DOB as 503 Canal (and as 2 Renwick to the developers). As for neighboring 219 Hudson—the triangle—the DOB website had no permits besides the one for the fence. That permit application (filed in May) listed the owner as Rafi Gibly on behalf of Hudson Square Hotel LLC. I called the phone number on the application, but the person who answered said he wasn’t the owner. There’s an email address, too, so I sent off an email. We’ll see.

Googling “Hudson Square Hotel,” meanwhile, brings up a website: The team is listed as Rafi Gibly, Paolo Maldini, and Christian Vieri. Googling “Rafi Gibly” didn’t do much (the first hot is for the Hudson Square Hotel), and “Paolo Maldini” brings up a former pro soccer player, which I assumed was someone else—until I Googled “Christian Vieri.” He, too, is a former Italian soccer star. From Wikipedia: “[Vieri] has his own fashion label—Sweet Years—which he runs with friend and former Italy and Milan team mate Paolo Maldini. The pair also own a number of restaurants in the city of Milan.” And soon a hotel in New York City….

From the Hudson Square Hotel website, which is written as if it’s for potential investors, so just maybe this isn’t a done deal. The underlining is mine:

Developing approximately 30,000 square ft. Luxury Brand Hotel located on the corner of Hudson Street and Canal at the crossroads of the Tribeca/SoHo/Hudson Square area of NYC. The Hotel will consist of 50-60 rooms including suites and a luxury penthouse. We will feature two restaurants, a lounge/bar, outdoor pool, rooftop sun deck with outdoor dining, a state-of-the-are gym and conference room.

The Hotel is scheduled to open early 2016 and will offer an upscale product that will compete with other branded upscale hotels in the area. Luxury and Comfort will define the hotels overall finishes, appearance and service. Hotel will be a full service property that will maximize its F&B (food and beverage) income with a trendy restaurant on the ground floor, bar/lounge on second and a restaurant/bar/private event space on the roof. Our amenities will include in-room dining, concierge service, mini bar, transportation, in-room entertainment, laundry and dry cleaning and personal training.

Considering the property size and other applicable elements we feel that we will maximize our profits and retain control by creating our own brand. Our research and statistics show that in the downtown area of New York City independent Hotel Groups are more successful and more appealing than the larger Hotel chains.

And now, the renderings…. The first two are a bit weird, because they don’t show the building going all the way to Renwick—which it does. But you‘ll note that it takes over the pointy part of the Hudson/Canal triangle with a big cantilever that has to be the entrance.

UPDATE: I totally misread this! The Husdon Square Hotel is evidently only on the little lot at 219 Hudson—and 2 Renwick wraps around it. Which is sort of obvious now, but as you can tell from the above text, I got a bit lost in the weeds.

Hudson Square Hotel rendering street viewHudson Square Hotel rendering roomHudson Square Hotel rendering penthouse



  1. As an Italian, I would say this is not great news at all.

  2. Hard location to get to by car, taxi or Limo. Especially at rush hour.

  3. Thanks for the update. I live around the corner on renwick and it’s nice to know someone(like you) has done the research which I need and want !

  4. Any update on this? The website is no longer up.


    • Nope, no update. The website had been more about raising money, so it’s not a huge surprise that it’s down. The next word would likely be when/if permits get filed with the Department of Buildings, although that may not happen till after the big hotel(s) adjacent to it are completed.