The London Times recently reported on the cost of a 5 minute call to London from various hotels in New York, calling the rates “… a measure of how blatantly, rapaciously greedy they are – and, presumably, how stupid or submissive they think we will be when they present the bloody outrageous bill.” The Chelsea, at $35 for 5 minutes, trumps the Trump Tower at $32.50, the Waldorf-Astoria at $20.63, and the Four Season at $17! On the plus side, The Chelsea is not as bad as the Gramercy Park Hotel ($55), though in terms of quality of service, it should probably be somewhere down around the $9.75 charged by the Hotel on Rivington. The Times recommended that, if blindsided with an exorbitant long distance charge, you simply refuse to pay, and instead negotiate a more reasonable rate.
In conclusion, I think it only fair to mention that the Chelsea does offer Skype service, whereby you can phone the hotel for free over your PC from anywhere in the world. Knock yourself out. -- Ed Hamilton