It may have taken seven years, but the new Times Square Edition hotel now open at Seventh Avenue and West 47th Street in New York City marks a milestone for Marriott International and Edition-brand creator Ian Schrager.
The much hyped hotel project was dogged a deluge of construction delays, financing re-dos and court challenges, but the 42-story, 452-room luxury hotel opened this month just as a pipeline of new room inventory prepares to hit Manhattan.
The new hotel introduces brings chic and sophisticated hospitality and the first Michelin-starred chef ever to grace the neighborhood, It also brings a cabaret theater and a complete reinvention of billboard art as part of a revitalization of Times Square. John Fraser is spearheading the food and beverage at the hotel and brings a fine dining restaurant named 701 West in a jewel box-like setting.
Throughout the decades, Times Square has seen myriad changes and has taken on many iterations. By World War I, it was the center of culture, nightlife and entertainment. By the 40’s and 50’s, the Latin Quarter Nightclub presented festive floor shows that featured chorus girls and can-can dancers, Frank Sinatra, Frankie Laine and the Andrew Sisters. There was Tin Pan Alley, the Copacabana and the Theater District. There was Roseland, Birdland, Ella Fitzgerald, marathon dancing, hot jazz, Doo-Wop and the pop rock of the Brill building as well as the invention of the now gossip columns.
It was a democratic “meeting place” and nothing exemplified the disorder of the city or the dichotomy of high and low art than Times Square. Sadly, however, the Great Depression and World War II took its toll on the area and Times Square began its decline. It wasn’t until the mid-80’s when the Marriott Marquis opened its doors and The Lion King debuted at The New Amsterdam Theater that the clean-up began with the redevelopment of new theaters, retail, hotels and eateries.
The hotel and all of its unique offerings seek to preserve the essence of the area during its Golden Age when it was the microcosm of the best New York City had to offer. Upon entering guests experience a king of “decompression zone.” Through a long ivory and oddly mirrored hall, guests arrive at the Lobby and Lobby Bar, a series of black and white spaces creating a surreal sense of space and time complemented by outdoor terraces, appropriately named the Bladerunner Terraces.
The terrace off the Lobby Bar offers its own private oasis in a cocoon-like area as well as the choice to face the brilliance of flashing light and color of Times Square for a great light show that only New York City could create.
Off the Terrace Restaurant, a similar experiences await on expansive terraces inspired by the L’Orangerie at Jardin des Tuileries in Paris. The outdoor space in totality with thousands of plants, trees and ivy presents a massive landscaping effort on multi-levels. Meanwhile, the public space interiors with their rich woods, lush velvets, waxed leathers, polished marbles and smooth metals are combined to create a chic, simple, hip, serene and luxurious setting, an antidote to the hectic life just outside the hotel’s doors.
“The Times Square EDITION is an entirely new lens on Times Square. From and aerie above the hubbub below, you can engage, observe or withdraw. The hotel is an oasis of sophistication brought to you through the insight of the incomparable Ian Schrager, my friend and partner. There is simply nothing like it.” Arne Sorenson, President and CEO, Marriott International.