HELL'S KITCHEN — The former H&H Bagels factory will soon host tony Fashion Week events and office parties after the space underwent a massive renovation to become an event hall that's slated to open this September.
The owners of Chelsea's Metropolitan Pavilion spent more than $2 million to transform the former industrial bakery at 639 W. 46th St. into a pristine events space, called Metropolitan West.
Completely overhauling the building, which was built in the 1920s, was a huge challenge, according to the new tenants.
"We feel like it would have been easier to build a building from scratch," said Shelly Taggar, Metropolitan Events' vice president of sales and creative services, who added that the abandoned space had become a magnet for rats and filth before they took over.
The factory has sat empty since H&H Bagels was evicted in January 2012. The bagel empire's founder, Helmer Toro, declared bankruptcy after being sentenced to 50 weekends in jail following a guilty plea to tax evasion charges.
After the renovation, each floor preserved some of the H&H Bagels factory's original brick and rusted columns, Taggar said. The second floor also features eco-friendly bamboo flooring and all of the light fixtures have all been replaced by LEDs.
"It's important to us to be green," Taggar said.
The new space, which has two floors and three lobbies and can hold up to 1,424 guests, already has events booked through the fall, Taggar said.
The space will eventually have a rooftop, but likely not until next summer, Taggar said.
For now, each floor can be rented out for $8,500 to $9,500 per day, or $16,500 for both floors.