This they did, masterfully navigating the era’s strict building regulations. On completion, critic C. Matlack Price commended their success, comparing the building to “great Babylonian buildings, with terraces and gardens flaunting themselves hundreds of feet in the air”. Topped by a copper-clad tower, the new Heckscher Building as it was named, rose from a podium-like base with a Neo-Classical façade and French Renaissance detailing.
Above the building’s crown-like finial – its eponymous feature in later years – perched a 12-foot gold-plated weathervane in the form of a rooster which stood as a beacon of progress until its removal in 1942 to serve a higher calling: It was melted down to support the war effort.
As decades passed, the building gained prestige and worth, just as its address came to represent the finest real estate in Manhattan and in the early 1980s, was renamed once again, this time, most aptly, to the Crown Building. Lighting designer Douglas Leigh was commissioned to gild the ornamental façade, for which he used 30 gallons of liquid gold.
Today the Crown Building still maintains links to its commercial origins, with its lower floors housing the flagship stores of some of the finest luxury brands. From the seventh floor up however, the Crown Building is now the 83-suite Aman New York hotel. At the pinnacle of the building, 22 exceptional Aman Residences redefine urban living with peerless views of Central Park, bringing the Crown Building full circle as the city’s elite once again call this midtown crossroads home.