By Bailey Beckett
Even with a skyline that grows more crowded (enough already, developers!) one cannot miss The Four Seasons Hotel New York. The I. M. Pei-designed building soars over the sky of the Upper East Side (and a tad of Midtown). The 52-floor luxury property has housed the Four Seasons for almost 20 years, and in that time has set the standard for five-star hospitality.
The flagship of the esteemed hotel brand began showing its age a few years back, but a recent $120 million renovation restored the property to its former glory. The transformation is made even more special with its piece-de-resistance: the Ty Penthouse, a $30,000-a-night suite offering a birds-eye view of Manhattan (and beyond!). “I traveled around the world to select the finest fabrics, exotic stone surfaces, and furnishings,” said owner Ty Warner, also the creator of the Beanie Babies empire. “I have taken inspiration from my travels and created a seamlessly designed oasis fit for the most luxury-conscious travelers.” Witness handmade king-sized lighted-pedestal beds that appear to float above the ground; furnishings made from rare Japanese tamo ash, cerused oak and bespoke fabrics; distinctive English sycamore wood-paneling. Don’t overlook the lizard gold and Chabata wallcoverings; and custom-woven, 100 percent wool carpets, and hand-knotted rugs that lend the living spaces an intimate yet elegant feel.
THE FEEL OF A PRIVATE RESIDENCE
That passion extends to the entire hotel, which features 17 studios, 286 junior suites, as well as 57 with one- and two-bedrooms and five specialty rooms. All offer oversized windows that offer sweeping panoramic views of Manhattan and an abundance of natural light. The rooms also feature striking, custom-designed ziggurat ceilings with variable lighting, and when the sun sets, brightness can be adjusted to suit the mood. Add in luxurious Italian Breccia Oniciata marble in the bathrooms, which come with oversized deep-soaking tubs, remote-controlled mirrored televisions and Bvlgari amenities. The rooms also include oversized walk-in English sycamore closets with a separate make-up area, curved 65-inch and curved 55-inch HD televisions, and original artwork to evoke the feeling of a posh private residence.
One of the biggest lures to the Four Seasons is its lobby Ty Bar, stylish, soaring lounge designed with art deco inspiration, the bespoke cocktail menu of classics from the 1920s and 30s and craft beers. Ty Bar recently began serving afternoon tea, a boozy twist to the tradition with tea-inspired cocktails, Louis Roederer Brut Champagne and caviar, and two flavored offerings: sweet (vanilla scones with clotted cream and strawberry rhubarb jam, brown sugar panna cotta with raspberry gelee, chocolate hazelnut napoleons, vanilla cream profiteroles, lemon tart with lemon basil meringue) and savory (smoked salmon roulade with osetra caviar, organic egg brioche, organic chicken Waldorf, fig and prosciutto with brie, cucumber watercress with Chef’s aioli).
THE ULTIMATE LUXURY
My favorite experience though was the L. RAPHAEL Spa from the internationally renowned skincare brand (and its namesake, Ronit Raphael). The 4,500 square foot spa is heaven personified, offering guests serenity in the form of custom massages, facials, manicures, pedicures, and hair care services. The brand is most famous for its “Oxygen,” “Ultra-Gravity,” and “Beauty Diamond” treatments, which can cost as much as $1,600 (so worth it!). The company revolutionized the art of skincare with its LEC-40 lipid complex, which can be found in all its products (which are for sale). Bailey indulged in a bespoke massage, followed by an Oxygen facial. And as of writing this, one week later, I still look fab. Even better than usual.
For more information on Four Seasons Hotel New York, visit fourseasons.com/newyork.