On Wednesday, March 1st, the famed Waldorf Astoria Hotel will close its doors for three years as its new owners, Chinese insurer Anbang Insurance Group, kicks off a conversion that will turn 1,413 hotel rooms into 840 renovated hotel rooms and 321 luxury condos. While most New Yorkers have been scrambling to hit up one of the hotel’s many gilded bars for one last cocktail, others looking to celebrate the icon in a more substantial way now have an opportunity to lay claim to one (or several) of the hotel’s architectural and decorative wares. Indeed, currently up for grabs are eight mahogany panels of Art Deco etched glass, four solid bronze urns, carved glass panels, the original 1931 private entrance revolving door, and a large set of revolving doors that come complete with two side bronze doors—all on eBay.
Within the lot, there is plenty to admire, but the urns are by far the most recognizable, often seen prominently displayed in various photos of the Waldorf lobby. The listing describes them as “Made by Artists from Excalibur Bronze in N.Y.C. for the Waldorf” and “as good as it gets, [as they] were in many Hollywood movies, and the rich and famous walked past them.” The pieces are also quite massive, measuring 7’3″ tall with 24″ by 24″ bases, and weighing about 225 pounds a piece. The urns are also signed “MK” and “Excalibur” to confirm their authenticity. But the starting bid? A jaw-dropping $75,000.
We reached out to eBay seller redwagonantiques1 to find out how he/she came upon this extraordinary bounty, but we’ve yet to receive an answer. However, it appears that most of the items originated in the lobby and date back to the hotel’s earlier days, meaning that they were likely discarded and the seller happened to be in the right place at the right time. Likewise, with the Waldorf’s impending closing and revamp, these items have become even more unusual and present yet another opportunity for redwagonantiques1.
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Tags : Waldorf Astoria