Photo via Wikimedia
Less than a year after moving out of the historic Seagram Building and reopening a new space, the famed Four Seasons Restaurant will close Tuesday, the New York Times reported. The news comes after the restaurant reopened last year on East 52nd Street with a $40 million renovation. And last December, former managing partner Julian Niccolini resigned after pleading guilty to sexual assault in 2016.
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Photo via Max Pixel
“I see the building as a Sleeping Beauty: It needs to be woken up and revitalized,” developer Aby Rosen told the Post about his plans for the Chrysler Building. His firm RFR Realty, in partnership with Signa Holding, bought the landmark for $150 million last month . His plans include restoring the 1930s Art Deco interiors by way of a series of restaurants that will take inspiration from Chrysler’s original Cloud Club, as well as adding a ‘”fashionable food hall” (of course) and retail spaces. The biggest news, though, is that he also wants to incorporate a new observation deck, joining the ranks of 30 Hudson Yards, One Vanderbilt, and Chrysler’s one-time rival the Empire State Building.
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Update 3/14/19: A few days after Aby Rosen bought the Chrysler Building for the bargain price of $150 million, the real estate mogul told Bloomberg this week that he would consider converting the tower into a hotel.
Real estate mogul Aby Rosen has picked up another New York City landmark. Rosen’s RFR Holding LLC, which controls the Seagram Building and Lever House, bought the Chrysler Building for $151 million, according to the Wall Street Journal. The sale represents a major loss for majority owner Abu Dhabi Investment Council, who paid $800 million in 2008 for a 90 percent stake in the 77-story Art Deco tower.
, Fri, September 28, 2018
Courtesy of LIVWRK; Photo of Ingels via Wikimedia
Bjarke Ingels‘ architectural dominance of New York City is growing — the Danish starchitect has got his first commission in Brooklyn, reports Crain’s. Developer Aby Rosen tapped Ingels’ firm Bjarke Ingels Group to draft plans for a large new apartment project on the banks of the Gowanus Canal. The site in question — at 175-225 3rd Street, pictured in the aerial shot above — is currently a parking lot.
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Image: Before the 2005 sale
It’s been two-and-a-half years since developer Aby Rosen of RFR Realty scooped up the former Germania Bank Building for $55 million. He bought it from photographer Jay Maisel, who in 1966 turned the then-abandoned landmark into his own private 72-room mansion. After removing the Nolita building’s iconic graffiti last summer, Rosen is now all systems go for his conversion to an office building with ground-floor retail. As the Post reports, Seattle-based fashion retailer Totokaelo (who counts among its designer offerings Acne Studios, Comme des Garçons, Jil Sander and Proenza Schouler) signed a lease for 8,918 square feet at street level. However, the deal only covers early fall through March 2018 for a large-scale pop-up store.
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Big-time real estate developer and man about town Aby Rosen has put his extravagant Upper East Side townhouse at 16 East 78th Street on the market for $19,950,000, a good deal more than the $8.4 million he paid for it back in 2004. According to LL NYC, the listing comes just a week after his other nearby home at 5 East 80th Street, which he’s rented for 15 years for nearly $23,500 a month, narrowly escaped the auction block. Rosen expressed interest in buying the property, which could be why he’s decided to part ways with this residence. Listing photos show the art collector’s impressive contemporary collection, as well as the full-full master suite, roof deck, and garden.
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The 21st century incarnation of the iconic Four Seasons restaurant set to open at 280 Park Avenue will bear no resemblance to the original, beyond the famous name and the sign that fronted the “Mad Men”-era power lunch spot in the Seagram Building, according to the restaurant’s co-owner, Julian Niccolini. The New York Post reports that the team behind the “new” Four Seasons–Niccolini and partner Alex von Bidder, the Bronfman family, landlord Steve Roth of Vornado and representatives of landlord SL Green Realty–approved the new restaurant’s design, by Brazilian architect Isay Weinfeld, last Friday.
A new femininity for the three-martini lunch?
On Saturday night, after what seems like an eternity of speculation followed by lamentation, the iconic Four Seasons hosted its last dinner. Last summer, Seagram Building owner Aby Rosen of RFR Realty chose not to renew the iconic restuarant‘s lease, and even before this, he faced criticism when he removed Picasso’s largest ever work, Le Tricorne, from the space. But despite the constant contention, the developer is speaking out, hoping to get a little credit for the work and money he has put into the office building.
“I see myself as a custodian,” he told the Times, referring to the fact that it costs RFR an estimated 20 percent more to maintain the landmarked structure than it would a typical tower of the same size and age. But experts say this is par for the course when one willingly purchases a designated building, which Rosen did in 2000 for $379 million.
Rosen breaks down the specifics
The Wright auction house is gearing up for the July 26 auction of kitchen and dining room items from the iconic Four Seasons restaurant. As 6sqft previously reported, news that the restaurant would decamp from the building surfaced last summer, when Seagram Building owner Aby Rosen did not renew the lease for what has been seen as the quintessential Midtown “power lunch” spot for the last decades of the 20th century since it opened in 1959. The restaurant’s interiors feature custom designs by Pritzker Prize-winner Philip Johnson and furniture, tableware and other modernist treasures by the likes of by Seagram Building designer Mies Van der Rohe, Hans J. Wegner and others and custom-made Knoll furniture.
With an emotional forward by Vanity Fair editor Graydon Carter, the auction catalog offers a preview of items up for auction with estimates. Included will be banquettes designed for the space by Philip Johnson Associates, Eero Saarinen Tulip stools, chairs and tables from the bar of the Grill Room, pans, flatware and dishes created for the restaurant by Ada Louise and L. Garth Huxtable and more.
Take a look at the items in the Four Seasons auction
The Four Seasons: Photo via Le Travelist
News of the iconic restaurant’s impending demise surfaced last summer, as 6sqft previously reported, when Seagram Building owner Aby Rosen did not renew the lease for what has been seen as the quintessential Midtown “power lunch” spot for the last decades of the 20th century since it opened in 1959. The restaurant’s interiors feature designs by Pritzker Prize-winner Philip Johnson, furniture, tableware and other items by Seagram Building designer Mies Van der Rohe, Hans J. Wegner and others and custom-made Knoll furniture.
Those items will be included in the 500 lots headed for auction on July 26. Dezeen highlights critics’ frustration at what Aaron Betsky, leading US architecture critic and dean of the Frank Lloyd Wright School of Architecture rues as the dispersal of “one of the rarest phenomena in Modernism: a place where the architecture, the furniture, the table settings, the service, the food, and even the clientele was of a piece.”
Find out more about why critics are so upset by the auction of the iconic restaurant’s interiors