The Real Deal New York

Waldorf Astoria interiors are now NYC landmark

Anbang agreed last year to preserve Art Deco areas inside iconic hotel
March 07, 2017 12:05PM

Anbang’s Wu Xiaohui and the Waldorf Astoria

Days after the Waldorf Astoria closed temporarily for a three-year renovation, its Art Deco interiors were deemed a New York City landmark Tuesday.

The unanimous vote by the city’s Landmarks Preservation Commission took just minutes, according to Curbed, following a swift public hearing process that moved quickly this fall after the hotel’s Chinese owners bowed to pressure from preservationists.

Anbang, which bought the hotel for a record $1.95 billion in 2015, agreed last year to keep the hotel’s distinctive Art Deco interiors intact during the hotel’s renovation and partial condominium conversion. The exterior of the hotel was landmarked in 1993.

The newly landmarked spaces include the West Lounge (former Peacock Alley); Grand Ballroom; Park Avenue lobby, including 13 murals and floor mosaic; and the foyer between the Jade and Astor galleries.

In a statement, Anbang said it “fully supported” the commission’s recommendation.

“The Waldorf Astoria New York is a landmark and an iconic hotel with unparalleled history and beautiful, irreplaceable features,” the statement said.

The hotel closed last week in advance of a three-year renovation and partial condo conversion. Plans include turning the top 31 floors into 321 apartments. There will be 840 hotel rooms on the fifth through 13th floors.  [Curbed]E.B. Solomont