Monday, April 12, 2010

Alwyn Court, holds court

Alwyn Court, is a residential terra cotta structure erected in 1909. Designed by the architectural firm of Harde & Short. It commands attention at the corner of 58th. Street and Seventh Avenue in New York. The facade follows the style of Francois l whose reign oversaw some of the finest Loire Valley chateaus. It is listed as an historical site. for obvious reasons.

Its grand apartments ranged in size from 12 to 34 rooms. Many including billiard rooms, wine sellers, music rooms, libraries and various salons. Later many of the residences were renovated and reduced in size. What remains are residences sized at three, four and five bedroom apartments. Still grand in scale, with all the accoutrements.

The Alwyn Court facade is virtually entrusted with terra cotta ornamental flowers, urns, salamanders etc. Look closely and you will find even more jewels. Come closer, no even closer...

Without a doubt, it is one of my favorite structures ever built. I sometime find myself going out of my way just to take it all in. With each visit, I discover a detail previously hidden.

Housed on the ground level is Petrossian, home to some of the most sumptuous caviar ever pulled from the sea. While it isn't on my list of 'must haves', it is rumored this is the place to come get the stuff. Besides, the tins are so decorative and beautiful they always make a very special gift.

Just don't forget the blinis and creme fraiche to go with it.

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