New York Daily Photo Analytics

Tuesday, December 26, 2006

The Crown Building

The Crown Building, at 730 Fifth Avenue and 57th Street, has one of midtown Manhattan's finest roofs. When seen at night, its illuminated, striking 416-foot high crown with gilded details truly gives it a regal quality, befitting of its name. The French Renaissance octagonal tower section is very striking, with stone/terra cotta, dormers, parapets and a huge chimney stack. An original weathervane in the form of a rooster was removed in 1942 and melted down as part of the war effort. The best unobstructed view is from the north, where this photo was taken. Designed by Warren and Wetmore and built in 1921, it was one of the first buildings to go up after the setback provisions of the 1916 Zoning Resolution. It was originally called the Hecksher Building after its developer August Hecksher, a German immigrant (1867) who made his wealth from mining operations. In 1929, the Museum of Modern Art opened its first gallery here in rented rooms on the 12th floor. In the 1960s it was known as the Genesco Building and again renamed in 1983 as the Crown Building and in the 1980s became one of the properties of the Marcos of the Philippines. One of the early commercial developments on the Vanderbilt's former turf, Hecksher's vision was quite prescient: "In the last analysis, whoever will not shop on Fifth Avenue and 57th Street will not shop anywhere."

5 comments:

Anonymous said...

Interesting to know that this is was the first site for the Museum of Modern Art in NYC...

ruth said...

It does look like an ornate crown.

Brian said...

It person, it's spectacular. You stand just north on 5th Ave. - near the Plaza Hotel, FAO Schwartz, Bergdorf, Tiffany, the new Apple Store,the Pierre Hotel and you look upwards ant then you see the beautiful gilded top all aglow - it's quite something.
Brian

Anonymous said...

wishes of happy new year from Madrid...
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Anonymous said...

I too love this building. The architectural detail is magnificent. Oh how it makes me want to visit NYC again soon!