"Hotel Astor. From the inexhaustible coffers of the Astors. Built in 1904, was one of the three great Times Square hotels that helped making the area a social nexus for high society. The Astor was famed for its public rooms and restaurants, with each room highlighting a different style and period. One room was done in an "Indian" style; another was decorated a la Chinoise, another in the Flemish manner, etc. The top floors contained the ballrooms - under that huge mansard roof were the high-ceiling rooms in which the elite danced and dined. It was a good time to be rich. But it's always a good time to be rich."
From James Lileks' beautiful gallery Times Square.