From the New York Times:
The Webster, on West 34th Street, is one of the few remaining all-female residences in a city that used to have many. Hotels and apartment houses that provided temporary refuge for young ladies hoping to find fame, or start a career (or snare a husband) in the big city occupy a distinct sliver of New York lore. The most famous, the Barbizon Hotel for Women on East 63rd Street, was memorably depicted in Sylvia Plath’s 1963 novel “The Bell Jar” as populated by well-to-do “girls” whose parents “wanted to make sure their daughters were living in a place where men couldn’t get at them and deceive them.”
Though the Barbizon and others, such as the Parkside Evangeline on Gramercy Park, have succumbed to developers’ offers over the years, sold and remade into condos or luxury hotels, the smattering of all-female residences that remain are thriving, most with waiting lists of prospective tenants. The appeal today is not so different than it was in the past: safety, cleanliness and — especially attractive in modern-day New York — a good real estate deal.