The Four Seasons held an auction at its historic New York locale on July 26, and took in $4,105,873—more than four times its original estimate. Every single lot in the 650-lot sale was purchased, with thousands of bidders participating in an auction that began at 10 a.m. and didn’t conclude until after midnight.
Barcelona chairs, which sold for around four times their estimated price ($21,250)
“The response to this auction is a testament to the beloved icon that is the Four Seasons and to the owners, Alex von Bidder and Julian Niccolini, who have operated the restaurant for over 40 years,” said Richard Wright, founder of Wright auction house. “It was a pleasure to work with them and their team and an honor to hold this auction.”
Some of the notable sales: Barcelona chairs from the entrance lobby by Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, which were estimated at $5,000 to $7,000 and sold for $21,250; the Emil Antonucci Four Seasons sign, which was also estimated at $5,000 to $7,000 and sold for $120,000; and four guest check holders, which were estimated at $150 but sold for $1,400.
Proceeds from the $120,000 sale of the Four Seasons sign will benefit the Canadian Centre for Architecture.
As The New York Times reported, “The auction was held in the storied Pool Room, where bidders sitting on ranks of Brno chairs reveled in a setting—soaring ceiling, wood-paneled walls, window walls curtained with shimmering brass chains—protected by landmark status the restaurant’s furnishings unaccountably lacked.” A number of items were removed from the sale at the last minute, the Times reported, and donated to the Metropolitan Museum of Art, eventually to be included in a reconstructed Four Seasons period room.
Philip Johnson Associates’ curved banquette and table from the Grill Room; estimated at $3,500 to $5,000, it sold for $62,500.