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London residents, Duncan Malcolm and Katherine Lewis, were thrilled when they were selected for a free five-night stay at one of New York's finest hotels. There is however, one slight catch.
While the couple get to live in a room that looks exactly like one of the real rooms at the Roger Smith Hotel, it is actually a storefront on the ground floor of the hotel, with two large floor-to-ceiling windows. As part of the agreement, Duncan and Katherine have to keep the curtains of the storefront open for three hours from 4.30 - 7.30 pm every single day, allowing curious New Yorkers to peer in and see what they are up to.
Dubbed Room501project, the idea is the brainchild of a company called Real Live Billboards and is meant to be a living advertisement for the prestigious New York City hotel.
This is not the first time Real Live Billboards has come up with a radical advertising idea for the hotel. In December, the same windows featured heavyweight boxer Tor Hamer, exchanging punches with his trainer (see video below).
Duncan and Katherine, who settled into their new digs on January 29th, said while it was strange to see people peering in at first, they are now used to it, and go on about their evening as if they were in a normal room. After all, loss of privacy for three hours, is a small price to pay for a free vacation in New York City. In fact, the hotel says they have received a number of inquiries from other people, looking for a similar deal.