“Arch”tober Kick-Off Party with Elle Decor
October 4, 2011Posted by on
Despite it being a rainy Monday evening, last night’s Elle Decor/Scavolini party was a smashing success! Alongside Amanda Burden, Chair of the City Planning Commission, we all raised our champagne glasses to kick-off “Arch”tober in New York, a month-long celebration of all things architecture/design related.
Doing my small part to contribute to the Arch-tober festivities, here are four of my absolute favorite pieces of Manhattan architecture:
I don’t care if it’s touristy, I’m fully in love with the Chrysler Building. Partially because I can see it from my apartment window, so it’s sort of my pseudo-roommate, and partially because I have a special place in my heart for anything Art Deco.
The Seagram Building, designed by Ludwig Mies van der Rohe and Philip Johnson, is a monument to modern architecture. We could talk about the innovative use of steal framing, concrete fireproofing and window casings, but what I love most is the elegant simplicity of the building’s glow, like fireflies caught in a jar.
When I feel the need for a little swank, I head to Grand Central Terminal and cozy up with a martini at The Campbell Apartment. Originally leased in 1923 by high-rolling investor John Williams Campbell, the lavish 25’x60′ piece of property was the largest ground floor space in Manhattan. Campbell commissioned a wall-to-wall Persian rug, a pipe organ and an ornate balcony to emphasis the soaring 25 foot-high ceiling. Combine a 13th Century cathedral with a Roaring Twenties jazz house and voila! The Campbell Apartment!
Some people go to Soho for the shopping. I go to Soho for the cast-iron facades. This is a place where my inner-nerd prevails over my inner-fashionista like a bad 1980’s movie . But I can’t help it. They are eye candy. Many of these buildings date back to 1840-1880 and virtually every facade is unique. They were created as decorative elements and are mostly changeable, like cell phone covers, commissioned by the building owner “snapped” onto the storefront. Strolling around Soho, I’m always hypnotized by the tiny details and daydream about who lived there over the years. With entertainment like that, JCrew can wait.