Anbang files plans for Waldorf Astoria makeover

321 apartments will take the place of over 500 rooms

The Waldorf Astoria (inset: Wu Xiaohui)
The Waldorf Astoria (inset: Wu Xiaohui)

Anbag Insurance Group filed plans Thursday to renovate the iconic Waldorf Astoria. The filings offer the first detailed look into the new owner’s vision to transform the landmarked hotel.

According to the permit application filed with the Department of Buildings, the 44-story hotel at 301 Park Avenue, will be residential from the 14th floor and up, with a total of 321 apartments across 31 floors, spanning 766,172 square feet. The fifth through 13th floors will retain 840 hotel rooms, down from a total of over 1,400 today.

The hotel will also get a new fitness center, restaurant space and retail space, and will retain its ballrooms, dining and banquet rooms, exhibition space and banquet rooms. The top four floors of the Waldorf Towers will have two condos each and the next three floors will be divided into four condos per floor.

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Skidmore, Owings & Merrill [TRDataCustom] is the architect of record, the filing shows. Representatives for Anbang and the architecture firm could not be reached for comment.

The China-based insurer Anbang, which bought the iconic hotel last year for a record $1.95 billion, will need approval from both the Landmarks commission and the Department of Buildings because alterations could affect the hotel’s exterior. The Chinese insurance group agreed to maintain the hotel’s distinctive Art Deco interior under pressure from preservationists.

The hotel will be closed for reservations after Feb. 28, 2017 for renovations to begin.