Gowanus hotel uses unique ways to draw in tourists

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GOWANUS -

A new Gowanus hotel is hoping to draw in tourists while showing off its proximity to a toxic canal.

According to its PR team, the Baltic Haus wants to celebrate the canal and its "gangsters, outlaws and artists."

Once guests have enjoyed the art and industrial relics in the lobby, they can hop on a walking tour of the area's famed graffiti or take a canoe tour along the canal. But the water is one of the most polluted waterways in the entire country.

A local community group says this is just a marketing gimmick.

"A hotel should be about the service it provides," a statement from the Gowanus Alliance says. "Not the surfaces of our community it can exploit to be cool."

Not everyone in the neighborhood sees Baltic Haus as a problem. Some community members say it is an interesting way to see things in the area.

The 33-room hotel is set to open its doors on Baltic Street this October.

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