Adventure Photographer Thomas W.P. Slatin Discusses his Photography Work Featuring The Adler Hotel
The Adler Hotel, also known as “Hotel Adler” was open to the public from 1929 until 2004, by different owners who were also the hotel operators. Originally Louis Adler built it and operated it, until selling it to Bernard and Hilda Wieder purchased it in 1951. Thomas W.P. Slatin, a renowned urban exploration, adventure, landscape and portrait photographer (of humans and animals) took a day in 2011 to document the historic hotel with the hopes that one day the hotel would be restored to its original glory and splendor. Mordecai Yarkony bought the hotel in 1972, and operated the hotel as “Yarkony’s Adler Hotel” until 2004. A Korean – American investment group based in New York, later purchased The Adler Hotel and other nearby buildings in the town of Sharon Springs, in the county of Schoharie, New York with plans to restore it, as stated in other media articles throughout the years. In 2018, according to an article published by the Albany Business Review, Kyusung Cho had a “$35M plan to transform Sharon Springs, New York by restoring the 14 acre former bathhouse complex which is part of The Adler Hotel and by restoring The Columbia and Adler Hotel” in its entirety. The Adler Hotel was built in a Spanish Revival Style, and was a summer destination for guests such as the Vanderbilts, and Oscar Wilde for example, according to a Wikipedia article about the property, which further stated that Steven Spielberg interviewed survivors at this hotel when working on the movie, “Schindler’s List.” The hotel had a therapeutic sulfur spa, and had two kosher kitchens. It consisted of 150 rooms, encompassing 5 stories. It is Thomas Slatin’s hope that one day the hotel which sat vacant for many years “will be returned to its original glory, and that it will be preserved.”
The Hotel Adler was on Slatin’s “wish list” as a property to document through his photography work, for many years. When he did photograph the property in June of 2011, it was the only time he photographed it and at that time, he took over 200 pictures. Slatin selected the top 70 photographs, which are available to the public as a documentation of the property. These photographs serve as a way to preserve The Adler Hotel as it stood then. According to Thomas Slatin, “The Adler Hotel has a very stylish and unique history, with well-known people who frequented the historic hotel on summer vacation trips.” Continuing, “The Spanish architecture, tin-clad ceilings, and turn of the century floor plans in which no detail was overlooked in the photographs, made The Adler Hotel an absolutely amazing and memorable experience to photograph.” Wanting to present The Adler Hotel as “genuinely as possible,” Slatin spoke of the fact that the photographs are unedited, with everything being “presented as close to his personal experience as possible.” The camera that he used is one that Slatin refers to as the best available digital camera that he had at the time, a Canon 5D Mark II. In terms of his technique in documenting this historic property, Slatin discussed this in a recent interview. “I made use of longer exposure times to compensate for the lack of available light within the hotel. It is often difficult to achieve perfect lighting in abandoned locations with long windowless hallways and no available electricity to power studio lighting, such as The Adler Hotel.”
Slatin concludes, “I found it fascinating that the upper floors of The Adler Hotel remained relatively intact. The lobby itself even had a vintage telephone switchboard, and there was vintage furniture still left untouched in some of the rooms.”
The photographs of The Adler Hotel, as documented by Thomas Slatin, is a series of photographs, depicting a historic hotel that is worthy of publishing today. His photographs document a once renowned and historic property, and serve as a way to preserve the history of the hotel through the photographs. Some of the photographs may be found with this article. Additional photographs are available on www.tomslatin.com by going to this specific link, www.tomslatin.com/the-exploration-of-the-hotel-adler-spa/ to his portfolio of work of The Adler Hotel.
Stay tuned for more of Thomas W.P. Slatin’s photography work. He is now utilizing a Canon 5Dsr which according to Thomas Slatin, “this provides exceptional images due to its massive 50.6 megapixel sensor and specialized metering capabilities.”