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New York’s 75-year Old Jumeirah Essex House Completes
$90 Million Refurbishment Project
New Design Evokes The “Golden Age of Travel” of the 1920s and ’30s

NEW YORK - October 2, 2007 - New York City’s landmark Jumeirah Essex House is about to enter a new phase of its rich and storied 75-year history as it completes a year-long ambitious $90 million soft goods makeover project. In January of 2006, Dubai-based Jumeirah Group announced plans for a comprehensive refurbishment program that would specifically enhance the facilities and services of the hotel and re-establish its status as one of Manhattan’s premium luxury hotels. Work commenced on the makeover project last fall in which all of the hotel’s 515 guestrooms, suites, corridors and lobby have now been completely redesigned with a spectacular new look paying homage to the hotel’s original Art Deco design and heritage. 

Atlanta-based hospitality design firm, Hirsch Bedner Associates, created and developed an innovative new design schematic that complements and builds upon the hotel’s original Art Deco theme with 21st century contemporary design nuances. The newly redesigned guestrooms combine the comfort and functionality of the modern era with the style and sleekness of the heyday of international travel in the 1920s and ’30s. 

“The completion of the refurbishment project marks a new era in the hotel’s glorious and fabled history,” remarked Scott Dawson, General Manager of the Jumeirah Essex House. “The hotel’s new look embodies and captures both the spirit and essence of Manhattan’s vitality. Vibrant, dynamic and bold, the new redesign comfortably bridges the gap between the hotel’s past, present and future. We have begun welcoming our guests and providing them with an exciting new environment that appeals to the discerning traveler.” 

High-Tech Style Meets Art Deco Chic 

Business and leisure travelers alike will find the many new high-tech guestroom features appealing from both a comfort and functionality aspect. All of the new guestrooms at the Jumeirah Essex House are designed to offer guests an integrated experience when it comes to the comfort of their stay, using only the most advanced state-of-the-art technology such as: 

  • In-room technology is designed and developed with the guest in mind keeping it guest-centric and provides guests with the opportunity to control their room features either through the LCD controls or through traditional switches (e.g. lights) if they prefer to do so. 
  • Guestrooms feature Plug and Play Internet and other devices, making it effortless for guests to use the in-room technology and use their own devices seamlessly. 
  • All guestrooms feature High Definition on demand in-room entertainment. 
  • All guestrooms and suites feature mood settings with touch-screen control pad for lighting, background music, environmental controls and temperature settings in which guests can selects the best level that suits them, as well as easy contact for the hotel’s guest services. 
  • LCD TVs and the latest mini-bar system designed within the contemporary wood cabinetry, which also conceals a snack tray, personal safe, and a red leather-lined compartment for the hotel’s stationary and compendium. 
  • In-room television sets offer guests round-the-clock “real-time” views of both Central Park and scenes looking towards Times Square courtesy of live feeds transmitted from rooftop cameras. 
  • The unique ostrich-print upholstered headboard features a horizontal niche for colorful artwork, which is up-lit with a custom-programmed color-changing LED fixture that modulates on a continual basis to create a variety of different moods in the room. 
In redesigning the guestroom interiors, Hirsch Bedner focused on the hotel’s original Art Deco design concept by updating the rooms with the following elements: 
  • Sumptuous finishes include lush golden carpets, deep red velvets, alligator-print leather accents, and exotic honey-toned wood veneers. The luxurious custom-designed furniture for the guestrooms is modern with a refined state of elegance. 
  • Beautifully-appointed wall-to-wall wood cabinetry units offering both desk and drawer space, allow ample work space for guests to use their notebooks and spread out with their other electronic equipment and work in a relaxed atmosphere without being confined. 
  • Comfortable desk chairs in red leather and a pull-out desk unit allow for easy access for business tasking. 
  • Hand-stitched, leather-wrapped handles enhance the custom cabinetry and hammered nail studs on the white leather ottomans gracing the front of the beds are reminiscent of the elegant steamship trunks of the 1920s and 30s when people traveled in style. 
  • Rich red leather-wrapped mirrors reflect breathtaking views of Central Park. 
  • Accordion-fashioned blinds adorn the windows featuring a “leaf” pattern design evocative of the trees in Central Park. 
  • Bathrooms sport rich pearlescent wall coverings and feature jewel-toned amber-colored glass vessel sinks sitting on rich marble and wood cabinets. Contemporary polished chrome faucets and fittings add a special touch. 
  • Guestroom high-tech enhancements include the addition of Voice Over Internet Protocol (VOIP) phones, wireless and cell phone repeaters. 
Lobby Deco-Deluxe – Ooh, La La-lique! 

Another important part of the Jumeirah Essex House’s refurbishment program is that of the lobby. Tailored to further enhance the guest experience, the lobby design includes upgrading the reception area and expanding the lobby lounge. 

Upon entering the lobby, guests are treated to and surrounded by the rich array of Art Deco detailing including sparkling beige, tan, and black marble floors, polished black marble fluted columns with bronze capitals, dark mahogany wall paneling, gold leaf moldings and dramatic crystal chandeliers. 

The lobby’s centerpiece and focal point is a unique Lalique-style glass and polished marble reception desk with backlit hand-carved panels featuring an Art Deco floral motif. Macassar ebony chairs reminiscent of the period and covered in supple cream leather and sofas covered in ostrich-printed cream fabric sit on lush red wool carpets hand-knotted in Nepal. Plush banquette sofas in the Salon are surrounded by rich, red drapery-covered walls and provide a comfortable place to sit and relax. Beautiful commissioned paintings and photographs of the Manhattan skyline and Central Park as part of the hotel’s new artists-in-residence program adorn the lobby walls. 
The rich finishes and color scheme of the lobby is continued throughout the guest corridors. The lush custom wool carpets made in Ireland are bordered with polished black stone. Dramatic, oversized roses in various tones of red and cream decorate the rugs and harkens back to the floral patterns which were an integral and recurring theme to Art Deco design. The walls are upholstered in supple golden leather-wrapped panels. 

The period’s inspired custom red-leather benches and custom wall sconces further enhance the space. The custom guestroom signage plaques featuring Art Deco-style lettering are made of cast bronze with red leather inserts that complete the look. 

About Jumeirah Essex House 

The 515-room Jumeirah Essex House is celebrating its 75th anniversary and has recently completed a major $90 million soft goods refurbishment project that will offer a new Tony Chi- designed restaurant featuring noted Chef Kerry Heffernan scheduled to open later this year. This historic New York City hotel, with a coveted Central Park address, is ideally located in the heart of Manhattan. Jumeirah Essex House is part of the Dubai-based luxury international hospitality group Jumeirah and sister to the world’s most luxurious hotel, Burj Al Arab. Features of the hotel include breathtaking views, unrivalled conference and banqueting facilities. 

The Jumeirah Essex House is a recipient of both the Michelin Guide’s 2007 “Five Pavilions Award,” and the 2007 AAA Four-Diamond Award. The hotel garnered three awards at the recent 2007 14th Annual World Travel Awards in New York including “North America’s Leading Hotel,” “North America’s Leading Business Hotel” and “New York’s Leading Business Hotel” voted by travel agents worldwide and was ranked 2nd in the “Best Hotel in the U.S.” category in Global Traveler Magazine’s 2006 GT Tested Awards. 

Other hotels in the Group’s portfolio include Jumeirah Carlton Tower and Jumeirah Lowndes Hotel in London, Jumeirah Beach Hotel, Jumeirah Emirates Towers, Jumeirah Beach Club Resort and Spa, Madinat Jumeirah and Jumeirah Bab Al Shams Desert Resort & Spa in Dubai. For reservations, please call Jumeirah Essex House toll free at 1-888-645-5697 or visit 

About Jumeirah 

Jumeirah properties are regarded as among the most luxurious and innovative in the world and have won numerous international travel and tourism awards. The Dubai-based luxury hospitality group encompasses the Jumeirah Carlton Tower and Jumeirah Lowndes Hotel in London as well as the Dubai portfolio: the world renowned Burj Al Arab, the world’s most luxurious hotel; the multi-award winning Jumeirah Beach Hotel; Jumeirah Emirates Towers; Jumeirah Beach Club Resort and Spa; Madinat Jumeirah and Jumeirah Bab Al Shams Desert Resort & Spa. 

The group’s activities are however, not restricted to hotel and resort management. The Jumeirah portfolio also includes Wild Wadi, regarded as one of the premier water parks outside of North America and The Emirates Academy of Hospitality Management, the region’s only third level academic institution specializing in the hospitality and tourism sectors. 



Also See: Interpretations of the Hotel and its Environment Subject of Major Art Works for the Jumeirah Essex House Lobby in New York City / March 2007
Dubai Investment Group Acquires the Essex House Hotel from Strategic Hotel Capital LLC; Jumeirah Hospitality & Leisure Named to Replace Starwood as Operator of the 605-room Hotel Bearing Two Brands: Westin and St. Regis / September 2005


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