Hey, there! Log in / Register

So, nu: West Roxbury could get kosher hotel

Proposed King David Hotel on VFW Parkway

The BRA will consider a developer's plans to build a four-story, 69-room hotel aimed at observant Jews on VFW Parkway on the Dedham line.

King David Hotels Corp. is proposing the hotel at 1625 VFW Parkway - where an old McDonald's burned down in 2013.

The company's plans include a kosher restaurant, a synagogue and a health club featuring his and hers mikvahs for ritual baths.

West Roxbury is not normally among the first places that come to mind when thinking of Jewish life, although it does have a (not Orthodox) temple and a couple dozen Jewish cemeteries. Also, as one broker notes, the site is "only minutes from the highway and affluent Newton."

This would be West Roxbury's first hotel.

King David Hotels was recently spun out from Mazzal Holding Corp., a development company started by Nissim Trabelsi, an Israeli native with ties to the Boston area.

King David small-project review application.

Neighborhoods: 
Topics: 

Ad:

Comments

Just last Sunday, when going to the pet food store next door to the McDonald's site, I was wondering why it had been abandoned for so long.

It's also not far from Newbridge on the Charles, where Hebrew Life has a huge complex, including assisted living etc.

It will be nice to have something in that empty lot.

up
Voting closed 0

Let's not forget their big place in Roslindale, just down the parkway from where the hotel would be.

up
Voting closed 0

1. It was a bad place to have a McDonald's on the outbound side of Route 1 when there is one for inbound (Coffee/McMuffins) right across the street for the morning commute.

2. There is an MWRA water pipe, a big one, running under the northerly side of the parking lot. The MWRA has the permanent right to go in there and repair that pipe. About 7 or 8 years ago they went in and told the owners that they also wanted to store equipment on the site while they rebuilt the pipe as it goes through West Roxbury and Brookline. The MWRA paid well but the owners sued for a bunch nevertheless. Litigation ensued and the store never reopened.

3. A hotel is a better use for this site than retail. This has been a terrible site for retail.

Also, does the Irgun get to blow this one up as well if it suits their needs?

up
Voting closed 0

I'd need to walk everywhere on Shabbat, and there isn't much (at least not much that's Jewish) within walking distance of this location. Brookline or Newton Centre would be better places for this.

up
Voting closed 0

Although kosher it ain't.

up
Voting closed 0

I guess that's the thinking behind the onsite synagogue. But, yeah, a guest would be pretty much trapped inside. I wonder how hard it would be to extend the Boston eruv? http://www.bostoneruv.org/bound.htm

up
Voting closed 0

Sounds like it would be the kind of place where people could do a weekend staycation. Drive there before sunset, observe the sabbath, enjoy the post-sabbath, and drive home on Sunday.

up
Voting closed 0

Even so, there's not much you can do, if you're shomer shabbat, on the sabbath. No shopping, no drawing, no taking photos. You can go for a stroll, play boardgames or read a book. But it does seem to be a problem, if, say, you want to go to Shabbat dinner with friends and they don't live close to the hotel or if you are in town for a conference.

up
Voting closed 0

I know there are Israeli companies constantly coming up with loophole devices that take advantage of the "I didn't do any work" phrasing. Automations, work by proxy, etc.

It makes me wonder if self-driving Teslas will be the cars of the future for the most pious on sabbath.

up
Voting closed 0

what's going up next to Waves Carwash? Looks like a hotel without windows, or two story box store? Very odd.

up
Voting closed 0

That there has not been any "coming soon" or "for rent" signs in front of it. Nor have I seen any story about it.

up
Voting closed 0

Those fake giant windows are something (there's another self storage planned for the corner of Rivermoor and whatever the street is that you take up to Millennium Park) .

up
Voting closed 0

That's too bad.

up
Voting closed 0

If they would just build more reasonably priced housing people would have enough room to not need self storage places.

up
Voting closed 0

There's a zillion niche hotels. Good on them for one for accommodating an underserved (in Boston, anyway) group. Mazel tov!

up
Voting closed 0

tony soprano takes it over

up
Voting closed 0

or until the city council votes to prohibit city workers from traveling to West Roxbury.

up
Voting closed 0

or unsafe heating/cooling for the building? Does the electricity and elevators go out at sundown Friday, and no cold minibar or pay per view?

Tell us, what makes a hotel Kosher?

up
Voting closed 0

accommodations for this via non-Orthodox bellhops, room service, etc. As a business, they must obey the fire code and cannot turn off hallway lights or leave appliances running simply because it is the Sabbath.

Incidentally, my grandfather had that as a childhood job, circa WWI: he used to get paid to turn lights on and off for Orthodox Jews on Fridays evenings and Saturday mornings. Though his family spoke Italian, this job left him fluent in Yiddish.

up
Voting closed 0

Among the many photos Lewis Hine took of children working in Boston before World War I was this photo (see larger) on Salem Street in the North End in 1909:

"Fire- Fire - I Want to Make the Fire." An Italian Boy on Salem Street Saturday Morning, offering to make fires for Jewish People.

up
Voting closed 0

Or ahead on early Friday?

They can't conduct business transactions on the Sabbath for the same reasons.

up
Voting closed 0

For the elevators, there's a thing called Sabbath mode. Flip that switch (before sundown, I guess) and it will run the local, making all stops up & down.

I'm sure there's a solution for the food. Hopefully a better solution than the kosher vending machine, though those are handy for the off-hours when you just gotta have a knish.

up
Voting closed 0

The tragedy in New York was devastating to so many people. Please don't use the death of children to mock something you don't understand.

up
Voting closed 0

The usual practice is to have an elevator that runs in a continuous cycle, stopping on every floor automatically, without the need for people to press buttons.

up
Voting closed 0

IMAGE(http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/8/85/Paternoster_animated.gif)

up
Voting closed 0

I'm going to pretend you're not a troll for a moment and answer your questions.

Regarding hotplates, one of the benefits of staying in a hotel which targets the kosher consumer is that one needn't resort to using hotplates in all the guest rooms to prepare food. Depending on where one stays, some places have a communal dining room affair, and most will provide food to rooms with advanced notice (e.g. travelers who don't want to drag their six kids to a large room to be schmucks at other guests for an hour and a half). But all provide a way for the shomer Shabbat traveller to avoid in-room hacks.

Even in the ultra-orthodox communities, electricity use per se isn't prohibited. It's changing the state of that electricity, completing or breaking circuits, which is the sticking point. One of the big issues is the question of human involvement in the on/off process. Heating and cooling isn't a problem because those systems run automatically, same as a table lamp on a timer. Any individual action by a hotel guest, like opening or closing the front door to go in or out, would be background noise at best when determining if the system cycles on or off.

Most rabbinical authorities approach the idea of "shabbes elevators" with some caution because they're clearly a leniency if one accepts them as legitimate at all. On the other hand, one does see them, especially in high-rises in Manhattan. Maybe not everyone takes them (they're slow, they're inefficient, stairs are a better option if one can climb them), but they do exist. As typically implemented, they stop at every floor and open the door for N seconds, whether anyone pressed the call button or not.

Minibar use would be problematic on Shabbat because the minibar business model is that taking anything out of them is a business transaction. You may not be handling physical currency at the moment, but you're still purchasing something. Most kosher hotels I've stayed in deal with this by always having a small light buffet available for people who want coffee or tea or a nosh during the day. You want a bottle of water? They'll just give it to you in the dining room, without bothering with the minibar.

Pay-per-view isn't allowed. Television doesn't do anything to elevate Shabbat or the chagim. Also, even if you, the patron, are okay with breaking Shabbat that way, the hotel owners can't take the money from the PPV fees.

What else makes a hotel kosher? These days, the biggest item you've never thought of is having keyed locks, instead of electronic card locks. Modern chain hotels, having gone to all electronic locks, mostly put shomer Shabbat patrons in the position of either breaking Shabbat to get in/out of their rooms, or basically not going any further out of the room than line-of-sight so they can prop the door with the garbage pail. Some observant travelers can work with this by taking turns going in/out of the room, but it's a huge pain in the ass when old fashioned mechanical tumbler locks don't create any of the problems.

up
Voting closed 0

It takes a special kind of person to lead with a joke about seven dead children.

up
Voting closed 0

Is that Markk is an elected official in Arlington!

up
Voting closed 0

Is that Markk is an elected official in Arlington!

I thought his constituents wised up and voted him out of Town Meeting at the last election...

up
Voting closed 0

I believe my friend's wife replaced him!

And, also note that the Brooklyn fire was far less about sabbath restrictions and hot plates, and far more a matter of lacking fire safety items like working smoke detectors.

Anyone who uses a crockpot overnight or while away at work raise your hand? Does anyone unplug the refrigerator over night? Of course not.

up
Voting closed 0

There were none in the house. They switch on when there is smoke, so does that break Sabbath?

up
Voting closed 0

Or, at least, LEARN TO USE GOOGLE TO ANSWER YOUR STUPID BIGOTED QUESTIONS!

up
Voting closed 0

Pekuach nefesh (lit. 'saving a soul') overrides any strictures on Shabbat. About all it doesn't absolve one of us bans on idolatry. That is, if one is having a heart attack on Shabbat, one can and should call 911, but one may not and must not cry out to Ba'al to save him.

up
Voting closed 0

Its a tragedy when dangerous archaic traditions kill people, especially children. I asked what makes a hotel kosher because I'm genuinely baffled by kosher rules, Amish rules, sharia law, Rastafari, and other religious customs. Now that I'm reading about all the clever ways around kosher rules, the link between Jews and law makes sense.

up
Voting closed 0

That's nice, you double down on accusations of insensitivity with a little derogatory stereotyping.

up
Voting closed 0

Do you unplug your refrigerator when you leave your house?

Do you leave certain other appliances running - like, say, fans, ac units, etc. Your computer?

Those cause plenty of fires. The type of appliance is irrelevant. So is the reason that it is in use.

Sacred Heart in Weymouth burned to the ground in a very short time due to a refrigerator.

up
Voting closed 0

And Markkk's endless font of assholery just keeps on flowing.

up
Voting closed 0

...but I stayed in a really nice kosher hotel in New York once (even though I'm not observant or kosher) and everything is on timers--elevators, lights, etc. I honestly can't remember how they handled to dining room/food situation, probably because we went out for most meals except breakfast. As for TV in the rooms, well, that's an individual thing and they don't do anything with those. Not everyone who stays there is Jewish, after all.

up
Voting closed 0

Markk, please be honest -- are you a bigot in real life, or do you just pretend to be one on this site?

up
Voting closed 0

I mostly just want to provoke people out of comfortable thought patterns and group think, highlighting bigotry (intolerance of different ideas).

Those kids dying and no smoke detectors in the home was a horrific tragedy. Are smoke detectors not kosher either because the switch on? Just monumentally stupid, senseless death in the name of religion. I'm also horrified by what ISIS is doing both to people and to historic artifacts in the name of their religion.

up
Voting closed 0

Not all ideas have equal merit. Particularly, the ones that you hold dear that have zero basis in evidence.

Shall I link to your comment on Arlington Patch that "useless" child car seats mean that pedestrians die due to cars being too tall in order to better illustrate how much you really care about reality and children.

up
Voting closed 0

I agree with the Swirlmeister.

up
Voting closed 0

I really realy could use one right about now.

A 1000-thumbs-down button would be even better, however.

up
Voting closed 0

Will I be able to stay there if I'm not an 'observant Jew?'. Not sure how this type of thing works.

up
Voting closed 0

maybe you can't check in on a Saturday

up
Voting closed 0

Hotel W Roxbury: You can check in but you can never leave...

up
Voting closed 0

But Mom, I'm going in. There's a VACANCY!

up
Voting closed 0

The hotel is going to be set up around the needs of shomer Shabbat patrons, so if you want to call room service for a cheese burger at 0200 on Saturday morning, you're going to be sadly disappointed by the response.

up
Voting closed 0

Those aren't kosher are they?

up
Voting closed 0

No, cheeseburgers aren't kosher. But every time I've gone out to eat with goyishe friends in kosher restaurants, someone always tries to order a cheeseburger. I even had a friend try to order a cheeseburger once at Shalom Hunan (a''h).

up
Voting closed 0

I'm betting most kosher placed have soy cheese for their burgers, although you might as well just have the burger at that point.

up
Voting closed 0

Soy cheeseburgers introduce a problem called 'maris ayin,' litterally it appears to be bad. It could look to someone who isn't learned (which in this day and age is all of us) like someone observant is eating meat and milk together, and thus deduce incorrectly that it's OK. So the rebbeim in their wisdom forbid the allowed mixing of soy and meat (or soy and cheese), to avoid putting, as they say, a stumbling block before the blind.

Modernity is replete with things which are allowed by Torah, but which the rabbis have forbidden, just in case.

up
Voting closed 0

Wasn't that invented by a Brooklyn rabbi so people could have some "ice cream" after a meat meal?

up
Voting closed 0

But not observing one of the countless variations of time-based restrictions between meat and milk meals (itself a safeguard on noseyn taam), is very different than eating something that could be mistaken for violating a Torah prohibition.

The old rule was one doesn't errect stringencies atop stringencies, but it seems like the modern fashion in psak halacha is to always err strictly. Me, I'm all about the leniencies these days.

up
Voting closed 0

former vegan / current Tofutti fan

up
Voting closed 0

It was a deli owner from Manhattan. But rabbis are involved in the story. And the first factory was in Brooklyn. So I sort of got the story right, if you squint at what I wrote sideways :-).

up
Voting closed 0

Yes, you can. Anyone can stay there.

up
Voting closed 0

Isn't that redundant ? Or is my Yiddish ferblunget (sp)?

Can the linguistic heirs of Leo Rosten give a hand?

up
Voting closed 0

It's about as incorrect or redundant than saying: "Hey man, what's up? Hows it doin'?" (since that is a possible, but very limited, translation of "So, nu?")

up
Voting closed 0

Maybe I should change that to just:

Nu?

up
Voting closed 0

Judaism than the sacrifice of staying in a Hotel in West Roxbury.

up
Voting closed 0

It just happens to border Brookline and Newton.

up
Voting closed 0

that will now have no excuse for not visiting.

up
Voting closed 0

from Dedham?

up
Voting closed 0

so the Hotels in Dedham are quite a distance and its too dangerous to walk route 1. Now its no excuses!

up
Voting closed 0

Highway from Dedham to WR hasn't been designated US 1 since 1989. And it was never referred to as US 1 by the traffic reporters even when it held that designation.

Still unsafe to walk though.

up
Voting closed 0

What are they building where the old Levitz used to be?

up
Voting closed 0

That was covered earlier.

up
Voting closed 0

Didn't see the original question.

up
Voting closed 0

Their commercial announcing the hotel is hilariously bad.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Sgb-lk5x1gM

up
Voting closed 0

Seriously? They're not going to get away with advertising that very long.

up
Voting closed 0

Technically, you see a nice swamp abutting the Charles there. Or is that the Charles itself...

up
Voting closed 0

From Newton/Boston, It goes underneath 109/Bridge St. at Waterfords (The old Irish Alehouse), winds around that swamp and then comes back under 109/Bridge St. near the Nobles school.

up
Voting closed 0

That's *actually* their press briefing/release/reel for the holding company's activities. They're an Israeli company that buys real estate in the Boston area for development (evidently).

up
Voting closed 0

from King David Hotels press release:

As high-class business and social travelers continue to search for the best hotels and resorts in the world, they may be greeted with a new luxury Mazzal hotel in Boston, United States in the very near future. Mazzal Holding Corp (OTC-PINK: MZZL) has acquired 3.0 acres and plans on building 100+ luxury rooms circa 2015. The location is just a mile away from a world class casino.

up
Voting closed 0

And if the midway isn't world class, I don't know what is.

up
Voting closed 0

That'a a lot more than a mile away.

up
Voting closed 0

The Midway restaurant in Dedham. Nice place actually. Mostly early bird types but a neat little bar, good food, and keno.

up
Voting closed 0

Whomever is writing their copy seems to have confused two different regional purchases they've made. One is for the Dedham location. Another is for a "Hotels & Resort" within a mile of the Mashpee Taunton casino location that's still in the works.

http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/mazzal-hotels--resorts-first-lig...

up
Voting closed 0

One would think that in 2015 we'd be past engaging in ancient, superstitious behaviors.

up
Voting closed 0

Insulting a religious practice that doesn't harm you at all?

up
Voting closed 0

They like to make fun of religious practices by calling them "ancient" or "make believe". If they don't insult actual people, they think it's ok.

up
Voting closed 0

Not all atheists. Just the ones that can't get over themselves and their atheism. Atheism is like any other belief. There's no need to constantly be remarking about it or on others, who don't share your belief.

I'm an atheist, and I never see a need to denigrate others religious belief, not when it doesn't affect me in any way.

up
Voting closed 0

He (and people like him) do make you all look bad, whereas, of course, most atheists are live and let live folk.

Of course, we Christians have (or had) the Rev. Phelps and the Westboro Baptist Church, the Muslims have ISIS, and Jews have some crazy Zionist Ultraorthodox (nothing against Zionists and/or the Ultraorthodox per se, but I have not names to throw out.) But we also tend to do a great job of calling out our nut jobs, so good work calling out MatthewC.

I'd call you out on your atheism, but hey, to each his own. If we all live good lives, we will all be happy, regardless of why we do it.

up
Voting closed 0

Let me explain what a kosher hotel means:
it would simpally be a regular hotel with a kosher menu.The only difference is that on Shabbat which is from Friday sundown to Saturday sundown,it will work on a Shabbat keeping system . I guess most people that would use the service of the hotel will be families having an event,bar mitzvah,wedding,brith or any other events.this would be a great spot to invite all their guests and family members since the hotel has all the facilities for such an event.I guess that on any other day of the week the hotel will be used by anyone
personally, I can't wait.

up
Voting closed 0