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Room Service To End At Midtown Hilton

Monday, June 03, 2013

WNYC

The Hilton Hotel in Midtown will end room service in August, replacing it with a cafeteria-style eatery.

The move will affect more than a customer's need for eggs at 1 a.m.: 55 jobs will be eliminated, from kitchen workers to staff who deliver meals.

Jacob Tomsky, author of Heads in Beds, a behind-the-scenes memoir of the hotel industry, worried that the cuts could spread to other hotels. "It's sad," he said. "The first thing I think of is the employees who lost their jobs. But when I think of the business model, I find it hard to see it going any other way."

Providing room service is a typically staff-intensive, money-losing proposition, he said — but customers expect it at a certain class of hotel. 

The Midtown Hilton is the city's largest hotel with nearly 2,000 rooms. Hilton Hotels & Resorts owns the Waldorf Astoria on Park Avenue, where room service was introduced in the 1930s.

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