Did Arianna leave NY sublease in a Huff?
Arianna Huffington partied so hard in her rented Chelsea loft that it looked like a scene from Animal House after a rowdy frat party, according to a new lawsuit.
When Huffington departed the 4,400 square foot, seven-story apartment at 227 W. 17th Street in January she'd caused $275,000 in damages ranging from "gouged, stained and otherwise damaged" walls, "scratched, punctured" wood floors, bloodied mattresses and broken appliances, the Manhattan Supreme Court suit charges.
"Huffington was using the apartment for large parties and business functions in breach of the sublease and Huffington's promises," court papers allege... the loft's owner Eric Steel gripes in the complaint...
Huffington said, "Every single claim in this suit is false except the square footage and the address," in a statement. "Eric Steel, who happily renewed the lease twice and visited the apartment multiple times, is holding onto $93,000 dollars in deposits, which he has refused to return," she added.
Eric Steel is the producer of the movies Angela's Ashes, Julie & Julia, and the documentary The Bridge, about suicides on the Golden Gate Bridge.
Frankly, with two media types and skilled storytellers involved I don't know who to believe. The evidence, circumstantial or documented, as to who caused the damage will hopefully clarify how strong Mr. Steel's claims are. I could probably qualify for a jury, if one is needed, but I don't reside in Manhattan.
Whatever the outcome of this case, the apartment, in its alleged current condition, appears to be the perfect location for an Occupy Wall Street strategy and planning local headquarters. Could the OWS crowd do any worse?