“It’s hard to think of a restaurant that has had as broad and definable a design influence as The Four Seasons,” says Brent Lewis, director of auction house Wright New York. “From an architecture and design standpoint, it’s a masterpiece; and from a food and wine perspective there were just so many moments of innovation.” This week (viewing from Wednesday July 20, sale on Tuesday July 26 at 10am), the house is auctioning the contents of the famous power-lunch spot (first picture) – designed by Philip Johnson for Ludwig Mies van der Rohe’s landmark Seagram building on Park Avenue.
Opened in 1959, the Four Seasons was something of a temple of modernism, and virtually all of its contents will be offered in the sale – from Eero Saarinen’s sculptural bronze Tulip tables (sold individually and in pairs, estimate $3,000), which grace the Grill Room, to tableware and cookware by L Garth and Ada Louise Huxtable, including serving bowls ($1,500 each) and wine coolers ($2,000 each). Other highlights include Mies van der Rohe’s cantilevered Brno chairs (sold in pairs and in sets of 12; $1,000 per pair, third picture), Hans Wegner’s The Chairs (also sold in pairs and larger sets, $8,000 per pair, second picture) – triumphs of Scandi design used in the smaller private dining spaces – and banquettes by Knoll ($2,000 each, fourth picture).
“There is something so inescapably powerful about this space – it is so intimate yet so grand,” says Lewis. What a way to take home a piece of culinary, architectural and design history.