simple is beautiful
New York Daily Photo: W Hotel Union Square
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Wednesday, 28 March 2007

W Hotel Union Square

This is the W Hotel Union Square at 201 Park Ave South and 17th Street. This Beaux Arts marvel is probably the most architecturally notable building in the Union Square area, with its granite and limestone exterior and mansarded roof. The structure was built in 1911 to the designs of D'Oench & Yost for the Germania Insurance Company. The company name was changed during World War I to Guardian Life. In 2000, it completed its transformation as the W Hotel Union Square. The W Hotel chain was launched by Starwood Hotels in 1999 as a "fun, hip" place - the "W" stands for their slogan "Whatever, Whenever." The hotel renovations were designed by the firm of starchitect David Rockwell. The coffered ceilings, mosaic floors and vaulted marble hallways were restored - the rooms themselves have been modernized. There is a grand mahogany and limestone staircase in the lobby, a Rockwell signature. Greenery has been added in the way of large topiaries and wheatgrass planters in the lobby. There is a streetside living room for hanging out...


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