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September 25, 2009updated Jul 17, 2015

The Pierre Reopens After Reflagging And $100 Million Redo

By Pardhasaradhi Gonuguntla

The Pierre, the iconic hotel on New York’s Central Park at Fifth Avenue and 61st Street that is the U.S. flagship for Taj Hotels, Resorts and Palaces, re-opens following completion of the final phase of its meticulous $100 million renovations program with the opening of 11 Grand Suites including the Presidential Suite. A new advertising campaign, “Pierre, Again,” also debuts today in select publications, celebrating the hotel’s return as New York’s preferred business and social address.

Grand $100 Million Redesign
The Pierre now offers 189 redesigned residential-style guest rooms, including 49 suites, all featuring the most modern of comforts and a feeling of quiet luxury in new guest room and bath interiors by James Park Associates. First floor public areas were reconfigured to accommodate a graciously welcoming reception area; Two E, the hotel’s new destination lounge and bar that serves light plates, afternoon tea and classic cocktails in what was the original reading room now transformed by Champalimaud; a new restaurant, Le Caprice, the first location outside of London for this celebrated UK favorite that will serve long-standing modern European favorites within a specially designed New York menu, opens its dining room designed by Martin Brudnizki next month.

Fine arts consultant Mortimer Chatterjee, a former Christie’s UK auction house executive turned Mumbai gallery owner, known for recognizing emerging talent and who researched the extensive art collection at the Taj Mahal Palace & Tower, in preparation for its centenary in 2003, hand-selected artwork to complement the guestroom and lobby designs.

Three new boardrooms with state-of-the-art amenities, including one with video teleconferencing equipment, now adjoin the hotel’s business center on the fourth floor and can accommodate meetings of up to 75 executives. These business-centric rooms complement the hotel’s expansive social banquet spaces on the second floor that can accommodate private events for up to 1,500 guests and were extensively restored by Champalimaud in 2007 as part of the first phase of renovations.

Grand Suites
The 11 one-and two-bedroom Grand Suites are the hotel’s most premier spaces. Each features its own unique look, with custom furnishings, hand-crafted finishes and elegant details, such as rich silk and brocade fabrics, Murano glass chandeliers and hand-knotted carpets, and carefully integrated technology, including Bang & Olufsen audio and Sony home theatre systems and high speed wired and wireless Internet connections.

Subtle couture touches reflect the Indian heritage of Taj Hotels: Striking jewel tones and traditional decorative motifs pay homage to the royal Rajput dynasties that created the authentic palaces in India now welcoming Taj guests, while contemporary artwork chosen by fine arts consultant Mortimer Chatterjee showcases the mastery of noted and emerging Indian artists. In addition, many of the suites feature hand-colored wood engravings that depict various historic scenes of New York related to the suites’ namesakes.

Among the most prestigious of the Grand Suites are:
The Tata Suite (the presidential suite), named for Taj Hotel’s parent company that is India’s premier business house, offers unrivaled views of Central Park from its commanding location on the 39th floor. Rich gold, silver and porcelain tones embrace an inviting living room, two bedrooms and a gracious dining room with service pantry. Its 1,980-square-foot interior also showcases a photographic essay of the history of the House of Tata and hand-crafted artworks by artisans from Paramparik Karigar, an organization dedicated to preserving and promoting India’s artistic heritage and supported by Taj Hotels.

The Rajput Suite is ideal for a connoisseur of India’s artistic traditions, warmed with artwork of Rajasthani architectural details throughout its two bedrooms, living room and pantry. Custom furnishings inspired by collections from the Victoria & Albert Museum feature inlaid mother of pearl and crafted silverwork. The sumptuous master suite stars a rich ruby color palette and a one-of-a-kind bed frame that is hand-finished with centuries-old Zardosi embroidery, a royal craft that weaves gold and silver metallic threads into intricate patterns.

The Charles Pierre Suite honors hotelier Charles Pierre Casalasco of Corsica, who joined forces with Wall Street investors to open The Pierre in 1930. Special wood engravings depicting 19th century New York City financial life are displayed in the suite’s living area and bedroom. Its stunning landscaped terrace is suitable for the most lavish of private entertaining.

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The Getty Suite pays tribute to John Paul Getty, oil company scion and philanthropist who purchased The Pierre in 1938 and owned the hotel until it became a cooperative. The one-bedroom suite is appropriately designed with hand-colored wood engravings of business in old New York. Its magnificent terrace, one of only two at the hotel, is also suitable for grand-scale entertaining.

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