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New York Hotel Story

An amazing art photography book about the Carlton Arms Hotel

New York Hotel Story - whispering forgotten secrets

Using photography as a medium, Nathalie Daoust's "New York Hotel Story" whispers the forgotten secrets of the remarkable Carlton Arms Hotel, a New York city underground legend on 25th Street in Manhattan. The building is 135 years old, almost seven times older than the unique hotel it houses. Like a collection of souvenirs, her outstanding photographs recall the hotel's amazing history, presenting personal, sometimes erotic, views of its 54 unique rooms.

Nathalie Daoust was born in Montreal, where she studied photography at the Cegep du Vieux-Montreal and was trained in the 3-Dimensional (Lenticular) technique. In her first solo exhibition at the Usine C of Montreal in 1999, she presented a series of photographs taken at the Carlton Arms Hotel in New York. These photographs were published in 2002, in her book entitled "New York Hotel Story". She has since participated in several solo and group exhibitions in Canada, the United States, England and Tokyo. Her photographs have been the subject of numerous publications (including Lux Quebec, Applied Art Magazine, Photo Selection, Photo Metro and many others) and were awarded several prizes.

Birth of the book

In 1997, Nathalie was invited to "create" a room at the Carlton Arms, a hotel already famous for its art theme rooms and wildly-decorated hallways and bathrooms. Artists from around the world decided on the decor for the hotel's cartoon room, a mermaid paradise room, a western saloon and a Roman boudoir, to name a few. Nathalie created a "childhood dreamland" room which boasts a bed in the shape of a car, a teddy bear television, funny mirrors, a floor made from a gigantic puzzle and hidden monsters beneath the bed. But, unlike other contributing artists, on completion of her assignment, Nathalie remained at the Carlton Arms to submerge herself and her camera into the pulse of each particular theme.

For two years, Nathalie wandered the rooms of the Carlton Arms Hotel, capturing the soul of every one on film. She got to known them intimately, spending days and nights witnessing each bedroom behind closed doors, in all positions, waiting for the perfect moment to shoot - creating images, representing them in their whole, uncensored truth.

An art photography book you will open again and again

Step inside this book, and you step inside various visions. The sensual, heartfelt visual language will have you hallucinating, feeling the hotel-organism as a work of art. "My photographs chew up reality," says Nathalie. "I used highly-stylized settings, props and costumes, different film speeds and exposures, and non-professional models. The result is a collection of images soaked in gorgeous dreamland colors." All of the book's captivating images were manipulated in the darkroom using non-digital techniques.

Mike Tyler, an eight-year resident of the hotel, commenting on Nathalie's work in this intriguing book, writes: "Her photographs, although they exist in the one frame of the still image, are more like movies, but movies that don't proceed linearly but in a place over time like the rings of a tree. You're looking at the past, present and future of the space she has captured and the people and objects in it, and all simultaneously. This was the proper meeting of subject and author."

Published in September of 2002, New York Hotel Story is an 80-page, 8" by 8", hard cover book that is destined to be a collector's item. It is the first in a series of books intended to show the magic hidden in the most special of hotels.

Purchasing information

Visit Nathalie's website at to purchase your own copy of this remarkable book.
New York Hotel Story sells for only US$20 plus a shipping cost of US$10. You can use your Mastercard or Visa. Payment can also be made by check or money order.


Nathalie Daoust can be reached at [email protected].