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A Somewhat-Chic Bowery Knife Fight

Old New York at new hotel.

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Situated among rehab centers and shelters, the new Bowery Hotel’s entrance served as the chichi backdrop for a sidewalk knife fight last Sunday. As neighbor Tim Prairie was passing by, he heard a scuffle behind him and someone yell, “He’s got a knife!” One of the hotel’s red-coated doormen rushed out, hustled the bystanders inside, then held the door closed, an appreciative Prairie said. The doorman even offered to watch over Prairie as he left. “It’s never a dull moment here,” says one of the hotel’s doormen who wasn’t there but heard about the incident. Doormen have no formal training to deal with skid-row rowdies, he says, but “it’s just common sense. If there’s a knife fight, maybe you want to come inside and bar the door.” Besides, the guys loitering outside the $325-a-night hotel “are usually sweet.” Through a spokesperson, hotel co-owner Sean MacPherson says he was unaware of the incident, though he also seemed to find it good for the hotel’s brand. “We are trying to offer an Old New York experience,” he says.

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