What's up for grabs at the Four Seasons Hotel auction
The Four Seasons Hotel — or the shell of what once was — is set to sell off every last remnant of its existence. And make no mistake; "every last remnant" is no exaggeration. From its art, to its furniture, right down to the measuring spoons from the kitchen — every little bit will be up for public auction as of May 31.
This purging, if you will, is a very necessary first step in transforming the former hotel to the lush Residences of Yorkville Plaza. The exterior, by and large, will remain intact, but the interior will be overhauled to make way for new, luxurious condominiums.
Demolition is set to begin sometime mid-June, so the contents must be removed lest a couple of baby grands find themselves among the construction casualties.
I headed over to the Four Seasons a few days before the official preview (May 29-30), to catch a glimpse of some of the goodies soon to be up up for auction. With Camrost-Felcorp Inc. (the purchasing company) reps Richard Mariani and Jaime Fernandes acting as my guides, I was introduced to just some of the 15,000 items prepped and ready for sale.
First stop is the second floor lobby and ballroom, where every other inch is marked with yellow tags. They're on the gates to Truffles restaurant (which now holds rows of framed art up for auction), on stacks of piled chairs, hanging off antique door handles, and adhered to various lighting fixtures. IAAS Worldwide, the auction company running the sale, has clearly already done a once-over. And according to Richard, they're expecting to draw huge crowds.
"I think it will be a mixed bag," he says of the types of people he anticipates will attend the sale, which will run for three days. "There will be some people who own restaurants and hotels, some who own other businesses, and I think there are a lot of people who are coming with a sense of nostalgia." He leads me into the ballroom, where the live auction is set to take place. "They've had weddings, bar mitzvahs, other special events in this space," he continues, "and they want to be able to take a piece home."
The whole lot is estimated to be worth upwards of $10 million. There are several big-ticket items — the 20-foot onyx bar, the gorgeous dangling antique chandeliers, the aforementioned baby grand pianos — but also a few for those individuals still working on becoming multimillionaires.
Jaime and Richard next lead me into the kitchen, where individual coffee makers, toasters, and miscellaneous kitchen utensils have all been prepped for sale, along with that industrial range and dishwasher.
The auction will operate with live and online participants bidding concurrently. The first day (May 31) will feature suite items (such as beds, linens, and even tubs and toilets); the second (June 1) will offer restaurant equipment and dining; and the third (June 2) will be for one-offs and collectibles.
Our tour concludes with a stop on the 32nd floor, where we check out one of the presidential suites. This space, again, has been plastered with yellow tags--including the bed that has surely slept countless stars and celebrities. If you've ever wanted to get in bed with Mick Jagger, so to speak, it seems you may finally get that chance.
The Four Seasons auction runs from May 31 to June 2. For more information, check out the IAAS website.
Photos by Morris Lum
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