City landmarks Victorian atrium at The Beekman Hotel

June 4, 2024

Photo by James and Karla Murray exclusively for 6sqft

The nine-story Victorian atrium at the Beekman Hotel is now a New York City landmark. The Landmarks Preservation Commission on Tuesday voted to designate the central atrium at 5 Beekman Street in the Financial District as an interior landmark, recognizing both its stunning architecture and the restoration project that returned the space to its 19th-century glory. Built as part of the commercial building Temple Court, and now the centerpiece for the converted Beekman Hotel, the space consists of eight tiers of galleries topped by a pyramid-shaped skylight.

“The Temple Court Building’s stunning skylighted atrium combined engineering ingenuity with beautiful design and incredible workmanship and helped make this building one of the most celebrated downtown towers of its era,” LPC Chair Sarah Carroll said. “Looking up through multiple stories of decorative cast-iron galleries to the skylight is truly breathtaking.”

“Thanks to a careful and sensitive restoration that adapted this tower and atrium to meet a new use and reopened this space as part of the site’s transformation into The Beekman Hotel, this historic atrium is once again able to be viewed and appreciated, and its designation ensures it will be enjoyed for generations to come.”

Located at the corners of Nassau and Beekman Streets, Temple Court was one of the city’s first skyscrapers when it opened in 1883. The red brick and terra cotta building was designed by Silliman & Farnsworth and featured more than 200 offices opening onto the ornately decorated galleries surrounding the central atrium. At the top, is a pyramidal skylight with decorative metalwork.

Considered to be a fire hazard, the atrium was walled off starting in the 1940s. The last tenants moved out of Temple Court in 2001 and the building sat vacant, and inaccessible to the public, until the restoration was completed in 2016.

As part of the hotel-condo conversion led by GFI Capital Resources Group, GKV Architects restored much of the original interior, including the cast-iron balconies, the skylight, the atrium, and the millwork on the doors and window openings surrounding the atrium.

“GFI Development LLC is proud to have restored the Temple Court Building to its former spectacular glory,” Eric Bass, GFI Capital Resources Group Executive Vice President of Development, said. “We are delighted to be the stewards of this newly designated interior landmark which we feel is one of the most architecturally significant interiors in New York City.”

The owner supported the landmarking of the interior but expressed concern about the ability to make changes to non-historic elements, including the first-level bar and some windows and doors. The commission on Tuesday said the regulatory framework will allow for flexibility with the configuration of this level, which includes the two restaurants Le Gratin by Chef Daniel Boulud and Temple Court by Tom Collichio.

The commission calendared the atrium in February and a public hearing was held last month. Tuesday’s designation marks the city’s 122nd interior landmark.

Next to the historic Temple Court building is a new 51-story condo tower dubbed The Beekman Residences, where homes are currently starting at $1,400,000.


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