Translation from English

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Soldiers, Sailors, Marines, Coast Guard and Airmen Club in Murray Hill

I am just interested in this place as an old Murray Hill Landmark...

It looks like something from back in time...World War II and the USO, Glenn Miller music maybe..

Let me see what I can find on the place-

Well, just a very short blurb from Wikipedia--but Yelp has reviews, coming right after

Soldiers', Sailors', Marines', Coast Guard and Airmen's Club

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The SSMCA Club
The Soldiers’, Sailors’, Marines’, Coast Guard and Airmen’s Club is a private social club founded in 1919 and located at 283 Lexington Avenue between East 36th and 37th Streets in the Murray Hill neighborhood of Midtown Manhattan, New York City. It is the only private organization in the New York area accommodating U.S. servicemen and servicewomen at subsidized rates. It also caters to military retirees and veterans and their families.



According to the club, its mission is:
To promote the general welfare of men and women of the Armed Forces of the United States and its Allies, and their families, by maintaining and offering club and lodging rooms.


In 1919, Cornelia Barnes Rogers and Eleanor Butler Alexander-Roosevelt, wife of Theodore Roosevelt, Jr., along with General John J. Pershing, founded The Soldiers’ and Sailors’ Club to accommodate servicemen returning from overseas duty in World War I. The Club originally served only active duty enlisted male soldiers and sailors, but it now serves all ranks (officers and enlisted) and services, active and retired, of the United States and its allies. With no U.S. government funding, supported solely by guest proceeds and the donations of private citizens, it has accommodated over 2,500,000 men and women of the US military and their families.
Currently, about 15,000 such personnel patronize the facility annually. In recent years the SSCMA Club has tended to incur an annual deficit of around $350,000.


Since the early 1920s, the SSMA Club has occupied two adjacent 19th century townhouses on Lexington Avenue between 36th and 37th Streets. These were built in the 1880s as homes for the upper middle class of that period. It is a 79-bed facility that includes a library with two Internet stations, several large event rooms, a television room and a dining room.

See also

 OK, now on to the Yelp reviews....Huh! Some interesting comments here, overwhelmingly favorable..but something akin to SPARTAN might be applied to this, NO ELEVATORS!! If you can believe that...people have their own reasons for staying here

The Soldiers', Sailors', Marines', Coast Guard and Airmen's Club

12 reviews Rating Details
283 Lexington Ave
New York, NY 10016
Neighborhoods: Midtown East, Murray Hill
(212) 683-4353
Nearest Transit Station:
33 St (4, 6, 6X)
Grand Central - 42 St (7, 7X)
Grand Central - 42 St (4, 5, 6, 6X)
Price Range:
Accepts Credit Cards:
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12 reviews in English

  • Review from

    What a cool little place!

    My husband and I stayed here when we came to see Paul McCartney in Brooklyn (all the way from CA and totally worth it!) and really enjoyed our stay.

    It's not the Ritz, but you cannot beat the location for this price. We paid $70/person per night (based on your rate/rank) Just blocks away from the Empire State Building, we felt like we were right in the middle of the action.

    The room was TINY, but it did not bother us because we did not spend much time in the hotel, anyways. The building and furnishings are old, but it was clean and the staff was incredibly friendly, even allowing us to check into our room hours before check-in time after hearing that we had not slept in over 24 hours. The bathrooms and showers are communal, but they were spotless and I never had to wait in line for either. There is a small kitchen and a refrigerator where you can leave food, plus they provide complimentary bagels and coffee/tea in the mornings.

    Definitely recommend! We'll be back!
  • Review from

    • 15 friends
    • 195 reviews
    -$60 @ person a night in the middle of Manhattan.
    -We didn't visit NY to spend time in our room.  We left early in the morning, and returned after dinner, just before shower and bed.
    -My wife and I shared a room, very small, the air conditioner barely cooled the room during the oppresively hot and humid weather of July.
    -Communal showers and restrooms, never saw another guest using the facilites when I wanted to use them.
    -Kept a few things in the refrigerator, nothing disturbed.
    -Stored our luggage for us on our last day while we visited city sights one last time.
    -$120 @ night for the two of us rather than $290-$329 in other venues close by.
  • Review from

    If you're in a party of one and visiting NY, then this is the place.  If you're two or more I suggest just going to priceline and you'll find a much better place/deal.  That prepared for a semi-barracks style hotel that's right in the middle of midtown.  The showers and bathrooms are clean, but bring flip flops and be prepared to walk down the hall to use them.  Also, there's some "characters" lurking about/working at the establishment who can either add entertainment to your stay...or a "bates motel" feeling.  The rooms are dinky, and if you're flying solo you'll most likely have a roommate you don't know.  All said and done, not a bad place at all CONSIDERING the proximity to everything in midtown.  If you want a good drink/burger go to Rare right next door.  Since you're only spending $60-70 a night, this place is a bargain, but don't expect for it to feel like the Ritz.
  • Review from

    6/4/2012 1 check-in here
    My initial impression was that mostly non-military folks were occupying most of the premises.  During my stay, I encountered three different hotel clerks.  The first was pretty polite.  The second was not overly pleasant, but actually lived up to the NY stereotype: direct and to the point.  The third came across as if she meant to be nice but actually pretty condescending instead.  This one reminded me of a hall monitor in grade school.

    There are no elevators, as mentioned in previous reviews so it made things a little tricky after a long night to try to get up four flights of  The rooms are Spartan...bare bones, which is fine by me.  The showers and bathrooms reminded me of Basic Training, since they were community ones, so to speak.  I definitely could appreciate the military paraphernalia they had hanging throughout.

    Overall, it just didn't have the same welcoming feel that a USO center at an airport has after a 12-hour flight.  All the rules and regulations and their strict enforcement gave me some flashbacks!
  • Review from

    My husband and I stayed there in December 2010.  We were not happy with the stay.  The place is rundown. The rate per night is per person - double occupancy.  So if you are an officer, you pay officer's rate is so does your spouse.   Completely 2X the rate which is not standard. Usually double occupancy for 1 room queen is not double the rate.  So we would have been better off in a hotel.
    The room was not well taken care of.  The sheets did not fit the bed.  And the curtains were falling off the rods.  Not what we expected and I would not advertise this for the military.  My husband was more comfortable in a tent in Afghanistan.
  • Review from

    I stay here every time I visit NYC, it's clean, cheap and even though you (communal living) share a bathroom, it's a well ran, very clean atmosphere!!  The only thing I don't like is there's no elevator and it's a hike up the stairs, and you might have a roommate if you're traveling alone but it's $60 a night in mid-Manhattan you can't beat it!!!  If you're in the military you don't mind sharing a room with a stranger, we're use to it!!!
  • Review from

    10/24/2011 1 check-in here
    When we booked at the SSMAC, we thought we would be getting a decent value on our room, expectations at rustic charm? Instead we walk into a conversation where we think non military personnel are possibly getting rooms and then we walk up a couple flights of stairs into a very sparsely furnished room. We could have paid the same amount of money for an actual hotel.

    In addition, we found a bug in our sheets. We talked to management in the middle of the night and they graciously refunded us our whole amount  right then and there. The great service more than made up for our experience which is why they get the stars.
    Listed in: DC PA NY
  • Review from

    5/13/2012 7 photos 1 check-in here
    Are you strong enough to be my man?
    Wanted: a hero
    I need a savior
    I need a redeemer
    I need a conqueror
    I need a soldier
    I need a sailor
    I need a vanquisher
    I seek one with physical strength

    This review is based entirely on event space.  The building is very conservative and traditional elements of old school charm to serve past and current soldiers, sailors, marines, coast guards, an association in addition to event space and hotel.  The Soldiers', Sailors', Marines', Coast Guard and Airmen's Club is the home base for the New York Poetry Forum where the South Lounge on the second floor is adorned with memorabilia dated to war era, which includes, a portrait of Prince Charles in military uniform.  U.S. flags and U.S. military emblem flags, a massive grandfather clock, large fireplace with mantel and piano all set the era and venue space are clean.  There is an escalator for those with physical limitations of this five floor building, no elevator for this pre-war walk-up building.  Facilities are clean.  The lobby comprises a portrait of U.S. President George Washington and two high speed internet desktop stations.

    Are you strong enough to be my man?
    • A portrait of U.S. President George Washington in the lobby