Since its construction in the 1930s, the Waldorf Astoria New York has, from its Park Avenue perch between 49th and 50th streets in Manhattan, set a standard for prestige, luxury, and glamour — which is saying something since Park Avenue is a pretty glamorous lane to begin with.
Royalty, film stars, and a virtual who’s who of the rich and famous have stayed within the walls of the 47 story landmark, and there was a fair amount of angst two years ago when the new owner, China’s Anbang Insurance Group, announced it would close the hotel to complete a $1 billion renovation that would turn it into a hotel/condo hybrid.
The company has contracted with Douglas Elliman to handle marketing and sales, and is counting on the same well-heeled set that sought the address for temporary stays in New York to come running for permanent pied-à-terre.
And if they’re counting on luxury, they’ll get it. Paris-based architect and designer Jean-Louis Deniot will bring sumptuousness to the 375 condos and resident amenities (which include a spa and 82-foot lap pool), while Pierre-Yves Rochon will see to the hotel’s public spaces.
The residences have been named the Towers of the Waldorf Astoria, and will come in various floor plans and square footages running from a studio to four-bedrooms, with a studio starting at around $1.7 million, Douglas Elliman’s Dan Tubb told the Wall Street Journal. Floorplans include libraries, entertainment rooms, and opulent master suites.
If you’re not in the market for an apartment, but loved staying at the Waldorf Astoria, rest assured that there will still be 375 hotel rooms that will open to the public in 2021 after they’ve seen renovations as well — Skidmore, Owings & Merrill is overseeing that re-do.
And fret not, despite all the changes, the new owners are also working to keep and even restore some of the features of the hotel that made the hotel a symbol of Art Deco lavishness, including placing the Spirit of Achievement, a winged sculpture that has perched above the hotel’s entrance for years, back in its rightful spot. The West Lounge, which was known as Peacock Alley in its heyday, is the subject of restoration work, as is the Grand Ballroom and balconies on the third floor and the Park Avenue-facing lobby (including its 13 murals and Louis Rigal designed mosaic floor.
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