Food fans have been waiting for a while for Michael Schwartz and his team to set up shop in The Raleigh hotel kitchen, a labor of love and necessity that has involved a lot of tweaking, including the replacement of chef de cuisine Sam Gorenstein, who left to focus on his own labor of love, My Ceviche, by ex-Kane chef Daniel Ganem. Last we were told, the Schwartz reign would begin officially sometime in the fall. But there may be another wrench in that plan.
Page Six is reporting that The Raleigh may be sold to W South Beach owner and developer David Edelstein. Hotel reps are saying there's no sale yet, just talks of investment and whatnot. But if Edelstein's 'investment' ends up being a receipt of purchase, what does that mean for Schwartz & co? We asked the Genuine Hospitality folk, but they are understandably unable to comment.
A source close to The Raleigh, however, tells us that it could mean changes all around. "If he buys the entire hotel--and what's stopping the owners from selling if the deal is one they can't refuse?--that could mean changes for everyone, big time." Somehow we don't think Schwartz is sweating this one out.
Another insider warns us not to believe the hype. "[The owners of The Raleigh] have been actively looking for another investor, but they are not selling the hotel." Adding fuel to another rumor, however, is that the hotel's previous owner, Andre Balazs, misses it terribly and wants it back. "This was a property that was hard for him to lose," says the source.