The University Club, 1 West 54th Street

One of McKim, Mead & White’s best New York City buildings and perhaps the best example of the skyscraper-palazzo in the world, The University Club conceals a nine-story building behind a three-story face derived after Florentine models.  Robust yet gracious ornament, strong proportions and a sense of august eminence carry the day. The sumptuous interiors… Continue reading

689-691 Fifth Avenue, The Elizabeth Arden Building

Built in 1925-27 as the Aeolian Building to designs by Grand Central Terminal architects Warren & Wetmore, 689-691 Fifth Avenue is better known today as the Elizabeth Arden Building, after the famed beauty salon housed there since 1930.  A singularly graceful example of the setback skyscraper, the building is decked out in soigné French Classical… Continue reading

683-685 Fifth Avenue

Formerly two very different buildings, 683-685 Fifth Avenue were originally the Art Deco Dorothy Gray Building at 683 Fifth Avenue, designed in 1929 by Kohn & Butler, and Sloan & Robertson’s Beaux Arts 685 Fifth Avenue of 1926.  At some point the latter design enveloped its neighbor. The original buildings can be seen standing together… Continue reading

681 Fifth Avenue

A rare example of a mid-block skyscraper by the celebrated firm of McKim, Mead & White, 681 Fifth Avenue was built in 1912, most recently renovated in 2010 and is a popular location with high fashion and boutique finance tenants. The original ground floors were lost to a hideous façade when Fortunoff was the street… Continue reading

680 Fifth Avenue

Like numerous nearby buildings, 680 Fifth Avenue is an attempt to suggest the austere limestone cladding of Rockefeller Center.  Completed in 1957 to plans by Egger & Higgins with Marazio & Morris, it was originally known as Canada House in a transparent attempt to echo such buildings as La Mason Francaise and The British Empire… Continue reading