In 1955, Marilyn Monroe was nearing the height of her career, she was dating Marlon Brando, and living in suite 2728 at the Waldorf Astoria New York — paying US$1,000 a week and rented from fellow actress Leonora Corbett. In today’s money, this clocks just under US$10,000 (approx. HK$77,500) a week.
Living in a three-bedroom suite on the 27th floor for the better part of a year, Monroe was known to have decorated the place with pictures of Albert Einstein and her own portrait done by actor Zero Mostel. She was living in the suite as she took method acting classes in Manhattan and met Arthur Miller while she was setting up her own studio, Marilyn Monroe Productions.
The hotel, which has now become an architectural landmark in New York city, first opened its doors in 1931 and has hosted a number of politicians, world leaders and celebrities throughout the years.
For the first time ever, the historic New York hotel is welcoming high net worth buyers to permanently own an apartment in this same iconic building, in effect purchasing a slice of history.
In 2017, the hotel closed its doors for a multi-year renovation that is set to transform the upper portion of the hotel into the brand new The Towers of the Waldorf Astoria, sitting atop a 375-key hotel. Slated to reopen officially in 2022, the residential towers have recently launched for sale.
With the likes of Frank Sinatra, Cole Porter, Grace Kelly, President D. Roosevelt and even Queen Elizabeth II having passed through its doors, the Waldorf Astoria is reputed as place where one could interact with history at close quarters, whether through the storied halls themselves or through its design reflecting the zeitgeist of the early 20th century.
From the 1893 World’s Fair Clock made by Tiffany & Co. that sat in the Peacock Alley to Nina Saemundsson’s ‘Spirit of Achievement’ statue; Cole Porter’s piano in the original lobby to Track 61, the secret railway track directly linked to Grand Central Station that transported former presidents to the hotel — a number of these artefacts have been removed or closed off from The Towers during the renovation period but residents can expect to see them by the time they are officially opened to the public.
The renovation of The Towers is being overseen by a star ensemble team consisting of renowned interior designer Jean-Louis Deniot, architectural firm Skidmore, Owings & Merrill and hotel interior designer Pierre-Yves Rochon. The aim was to breathe new life into the building while respecting and maintaining the design intent of its original architect Lloyd Morgan.
With Deniot being in charge of interior design, future residents can expect to find the original Art Deco references existing in harmony with more modern trends. He has especially relied on handcrafted finishes and natural materials to bring a sense of comfort to the otherwise grand opulence of the building.
Available in layouts from studios up to four-bedroom units, the residences feature elegant touches wherever you look: From light-filled, high-ceilinged interiors to custom-designed wood and lacquer cabinetry built by Italian house Molteni & C; professional kitchen appliances by Gaggenau to heated master bathroom floors. The Towers’ common spaces will also see a collection of dynamic contemporary art, such as by Korean artist Minjung Kim, curated with the help of celebrated auctioneer and collector Simon de Pury.
Famous for its round-the-clock service and in-room dining — a pioneering concept at the time — the landmark hotel has been considered the birthplace of the ‘hotel residence,’ or what now what many refer to as the ‘branded residence.’
Similarly, residents at The Towers can expect the same level of five-star service and amenities. A number of attractive features include access to the Starlight Pool, a 25-metre indoor swimming pool with views over Park Avenue; the private outdoor respite named the Starlight Terrace; the Monte Carlo Gaming Room; the Monaco Bar; a wine tasting room with Gaggenau wine vaults available for private storage; and 24-hour concierge services in addition to dedicated on-site professionals to take care of any whim or request.
Situated in the heart of New York city, the Park Avenue luxury residences are priced starting from US$1.7 million (approx. HK$13.2 million) for its studio apartments, with one- to four-bedroom suites also available for upwards of US$18 million (HK$139 million).
Virtual or in-person tours are now available at The Towers of the Waldorf Astoria, 305 Park Avenue, New York, United States