Most hotel artwork is either cheap posters, bad lithographs, or mall art. Not so at Jumeirah's Essex House in New York City. Here, artwork is treasured and showcased with pride.
Celebrating over 75 years of luxury on Central Park South, the historic Jumeirah Essex House first opened its gilded doors in 1931. The Manhattan landmark has recently completed a $90 million refurbishment program that pays homage to its classic Art Deco heritage. Art Curator Katherine Gass developed an artist-in-residence program, highlighted by the lobby's extensive gallery of works celebrating New York's Central Park.
Gass, a former curator at The Whitney Museum of American Art and The Chase Manhattan Bank Art Collection, prefers overseeing the collection at Essex House to a museum because of the public interaction. She notes that showcasing the fine art is not unlike having someone come into her home. She conducts free art tours which are accompanied by a flute of Champagne. The tours are so popular that they must be booked in advance. Private tours are available upon request.
Gass notes that the Essex House art program goes beyond mere lobby decorations. It connects the hotel with Central Park as an important landmark, as well as New York City's rich history. The hotel collaborated with CentralPark.com to create an audio walking tour of Central Park, which covers artwork located throughout the park and its statuary.
For an interesting, artful perspective, check out this video:
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Alex A. Kecskes has written hundreds of published articles on health/fitness, "green" issues, TV/film entertainment, restaurant reviews and many other topics. As a former Andy/Belding/One Show ad agency copywriter, he also writes web content, ads, brochures, sales letters, mailers and scripts for national B2B and B2C clients.