simple is beautiful
New York Daily Photo: The Sherry
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Tuesday, 17 July 2007

The Sherry

This is the Sherry Netherland (as seen from Central Park), an absolutely exquisite and remarkable building in the finest location in NYC, at 59th Street and Fifth Avenue with immediate neighbors like the Metropolitan Club and the Pierre and Plaza Hotels. If you are not familiar with it - it maybe due to its somewhat understated elegance and small lobby, unlike that of the Waldorf Astoria, e.g. The Sherry does not even have a Wikipedia entry, yet many architects consider it one of the finest skyscrapers in NYC. Built in 1927, it stands at 570 feet/38 stories. The Sherry Netherland is an apartment hotel - there are 53 guest hotel rooms and 97 cooperative apartments ($1.3 - $13.5 million; cash only). Above the 24th floor there is only one apartment per floor. Designed by renowned architect Leonard Schultze, with his partner, S. Fullerton Weaver - their firm also designed the Pierre, the Waldorf, The Breakers (Palm Beach) and The Biltmore hotels in Atlanta, Coral Gables and Los Angeles. The Sherry features travertine marble facing on the base and an elaborate Gothic-inspired minaret. Unique touches include the whimsical griffins with hanging lanterns that guard the exterior. Some of the finest retailers grace the street level such as A La Vieille Russie or Domenico Vacca. The lobby was modeled after the Vatican Library. There are classical friezes rescued from the Cornelius Vanderbilt mansion one block south where Bergdorf Goodman now stands, vaulted ceilings, ornate mirrors, crystal chandeliers, hand-loomed French carpets (removed in the summer, allowing the beautiful marble floors to show) and antique furnishings. Corridors feature vaulted ceilings, as well as faux columns hand detailed in gold leaf. They employ a full-time person to do nothing but reapply gold leaf to the hotel’s many architectural details and hand paint the exquisite detail on the room numbers and elevators. Attendants are on duty 24 hours a day in the Sherry’s original wood-paneled elevators, embellished with hand-painted Renaissance scenes. Attendants wear full livery and use approximately 140 pairs of white gloves each week. Some of the bathrooms have crystal chandeliers. And then there are the rooms that face Central Park ...


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