The pages illuminate an ‘Art Deco Dream Come to Life’
Assouline has released a new must have coffee table book, all about The Carlye hotel. The landmark institution located on New York’s Upper East Side for nearly a century. While the iconic New York City hotel that will always hold the key to my heart is The Plaza; The Carlyle comes in a close second. Assouline’s new coffee table book about the legendary Carlyle hotel however, is iconic in and of itself. Released in September last year, the luxury coffee table book is already now on it’s second run.
If there is one landmark that encapsulates the spirit of New York City, with all its glamour, charm and singularity; it is The Carlyle Hotel. An Upper East Side institution since it opened in 1930, The Carlyle has become synonymous with luxury, status and sophistication. Its suites have housed presidents and princesses, dukes and duchesses, and Hollywood’s most honored stars.
Celebrating The Carlyle Hotel’s Enduring, Forever Glamorous Appeal
Commemorating the hotel’s ninetieth anniversary, and featuring the recent renovation by the esteemed designer Tony Chi, this is an all-new edition of The Carlyle. It explores the hotel’s storied history and its status as an enduring icon. With exclusive interviews with celebrity patrons, and never-before-seen photographs from the earliest archives up to today’s most exclusive parties. This stunning volume is an homage to the rich past and vibrant present of this grand, world-famous hotel. A hotel once known as the New York White House.
It is in fact at The Carlyle, that most famous elevator ride in the world ever took place. In The Carlyle elevator: Princess Diana, Michael Jackson and Steve Jobs all at once…
When the Duke and Duchess of Sussex visited New York in September of last year, they stayed at The Carlyle. A video of them enjoying a night at Bemelmans Bar quickly found its way to the internet. While it spread like fire across the pond, for many New Yorkers, it was no surprise. Of course they were at the Carlyle.
The five-star hotel on the Upper East Side has long been a bastion for the beautiful and glamorous. Prince Harry’s brother, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge stayed there during their royal tour in 2014. Harry and William’s mother, Princess Diana, was a frequent guest. During the Kennedy administration, the hotel was nicknamed the “New York White House.” It was both John and Jackie’s hotel of choice in the New York City. After her husband was assassinated, it was The Carlyle where Jackie sought refuge from the media. She lived there for ten months after her husband’s death.
George Clooney has such a deep love for the hotel, that he participated in the 2018 documentary, “Always at the Carlyle.” In that same documentary, Piers Morgan says the “most famous elevator ride in history” took place at The Carlyle. “‘You know, we once had Princess Diana and Micheal Jackson and Steve Jobs, all at the same time’,” he recalls an operator telling him. “Now, that is a power elevator. It was pretty silent, until Diana begins singing, ‘Beat It.’”
Every May, the hotel becomes a haute hub for the Met Gala, with celebrities from Priyanka Chopra to Kendall Jenner posing for photographs in its gilded lobby.
So what brings the well-heeled back to The Carlyle again and again? After all, and as I stated before, it may not be New York’s most famous hotel. That honor belongs to The Plaza, due to Eloise children’s books and its starring role in Home Alone 2. As well as my childhood memories.
Part of it is because it’s an institution that balances a distinguished discretion. Very similar to that of Chateau Marmont in it’s heyday, under hotelier Andre Balasz. There’s a secret entrance, intimate accommodations, and a lively atmosphere. It’s a common occurrence for Bemelmans bar patrons to burst out into song, especially if the pianist starts playing Billy Joel.
But it’s also because The Carlyle, more so than any other New York hotel, seems to embody a part of the city’s cultural soul. There’s the aforementioned Bememelmans, with murals painted by Ludwig Bemelmans, the illustrator of Madeline. There’s the Café Carlyle, a moody cabaret supper club. It has welcomed everyone from Alan Cummings to Judy Collins onto the stage. Then there’s the rosy-hued gallery area, by famed interior designer Renzo Mogiardino, perfect for an afternoon tea or pre-dinner cocktail. “The vibe of The Carlyle is not a shallow kind of chic, but a deeper thing. The kind of feeling that doesn’t go away.
It comes from the salt of the art and smells like liveliness, a mixture of Chanel perfume and cigars and whiskey and peonies,” Lenny Kravitz wrote in the introduction to The Carlyle, a new Assouline book about the hotel that came out this September. How many hotels have inspired a documentary, a book, and oh, a capsule clothing collection with Frame?
For this Assouline new edition, James Reginato and Lenny Kravitz co-author this show-stopping coffee table anchor.
James Reginato, Writer-at-Large for Vanity Fair and a contributor to Sotheby’s Magazine, is the author of Great Houses, Modern Aristocrats. A leading journalist, he was formerly W Magazine’s Features Director.
Regarded as one of the preeminent rock musicians of our time, Lenny Kravitz has transcended genre, style, race and class over the course of a forty-year musical career. Reveling in the soul, rock and funk influences the 1960s and 1970s, the writer, producer and multi-instrumentalist has won four consecutive Grammy® Awards. His eleven studio albums have sold forty million worldwide and his creative firm Kravitz Design Inc. touts an impressive portfolio of ventures, including hotel properties and high-end brands like Rolex, Leica and Dom Pérignon. He’s the author of Flash, which showcases rock photography and his memoir, Let Love Rule, landed him on The New York Times Best Seller List.
“There’s nowhere I love to go more in Uptown New York than to The Carlyle! Especially for a holiday drink at Bemelman’s Bar or an intimate bite with friends in the Moroccan lounge beside it. Full of history, it’s grown-up and glamourous.” – Sofia Coppola