Housed in MetLife’s former headquarters, The New York Edition is a true oasis of luxury in Manhattan, built for those who prefer personalized service with an air of elegant simplicity.
A Native New Yorker
Like wine, the refined taste of this visionary entrepreneur only improves with age. As if it weren’t enough to be the creator of the revolutionary Studio 54 and the very concept of the boutique hotel in New York in the 1980s, businessman Ian Schrager is also the name behind legendary institutions like Gramercy Park. From Renaissance-style hotels to modern buildings made for the new Instagram generation – Schrager is not afraid to risk it all. His current goal is to produce a new generation of glamor in a technological setting.
Millennials have long been waiting for accommodation in New York designed especially for them, different from standard hotels that are indistinguishable from one another. For this new audience, “high-end” doesn’t equate to the status symbols of the past. What millennials want, ultimately, is to have an unforgettable experience – from the room amenities to the hotel restaurant. With this insight in mind, Schrager and the Marriott group have teamed up to build a hotel that satisfies the desires of these young travelers – knowing that today’s style is all about simplicity. Defined as a “home-facing hotel,” the New York Edition was inspired by twentieth-century New York’s private clubs, Gilded Age mansions, and Stanford White’s architectural masterpieces. The feeling that one is staying in a home makes the place a haven within the city.
I am always interested in circumventing the status quo to go in new directions. When two opposing aesthetics come together, they either fail miserably or create alchemy. If done well, the presence of the old will always highlight the new, and vice versa” Ian Schrager
To maintain the touch of elegance and warmth envisioned by Schrager, few buildings could serve as a site for The New York Edition. For this reason, the iconic Clocktower, also known as the Metropolitan Life Insurance Company Tower (MetLife), was chosen as a home for the hotel. Designed in 1909 by architectural firm Napoleon LeBrun & Sons, the Clocktower was for many years the tallest building in the Big Apple, until it was topped by the Woolworth Building in 1913.
Situated in a neighborhood known as NoMad, the hotel is one of the busiest locations in the city. The area has boomed in recent years and is seen by many as the new city center, north of the Meatpacking District and Chelsea and south of Times Square. As Arne Sorenson, Marriott International CEO puts is, “luxury has a new address. With the opening of our first Edition hotel in New York, in addition to the Clocktower restaurant, we have ushered in a new era of timeless lodging. ”
In all, there are 273 rooms with high ceilings and elegant decor, reminiscent of the luxury apartments in New York City in the 1990s. The building’s large original windows provide full views of the city – the larger apartments even have 360 ° views. The highlight of the decoration is the long table made of white oak, inspired by Jean-Michel Frank.
When it comes to amenities, guests’ tastes have changed in recent years. Aware of the change, the hotel offers modern and attentive service without being officious. The team is trained to know exactly when to enter and when to give a visitor space. Guests are encouraged to do what they want when they want. An example of this is the room service, which offers Prime beef and wild Atlantic salmon, but which can in minutes deliver a hamburger or a simple pasta if so-desired by the customer.
Speaking of eating, the New York Edition also features The Clocktower, a restaurant overlooking the park, headed by chef Jason Atherton. Tomato salad, burrata and basil, and seared tuna are part of the restaurant’s exclusive menu. The restaurant is divided into three dining rooms, one of which housed the chair of Met Life’s president in the old days. The sideboard, in which wines from around the world are stored, was where a secretary would file folders and documents from the CEO in days gone by.
For Schrager, “It is impossible to label this look”. Indeed. Few hotels can preserve the historic buildings in which they are housed with such elegance. The New Edition, while it respects the original facilities, knows how to provide guests with a refined environment. It’s clear that the partnership between Schrager and Marriott is a match made in heaven. The result is an Edition unlike any other in the world, primed for even further global expansion.
Two bars and a billiard room are also part of the hotel’s attractions. Separated as though in a private home, the rooms come together harmoniously, with spacious interiors and plenty of natural light. In the lobby bar, plaster walls stand in contrast to large custom-molded concrete windows – offering a stunning view of Madison Square Park. As a riff on the Millionaire’s Row mansions, a hand-painted steel fireplace has been placed in the lobby next to the spiral staircase leading to the second floor.
Photos: Courtesy The Edition Hotel