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The Plaza Stories
October 16 @ 6:30 pm - 8:30 pm
Wednesday, October 16,
6:30PM Reception, 7:00PM Lecture
Members: Free; Guests: $15
THE PLAZA is the account of one vaunted New York City address that has become synonymous with wealth and scandal, opportunity and tragedy. With glamour on the surface and strife behind the scenes, it is the story of how one hotel became a mirror reflecting New York’s place at the center of the country’s cultural narrative for over a century. Journalist Julie Satow will share how this thrilling, unforgettable history of one illustrious hotel has defined our understanding of money and glamour, from the Gilded Age to the Go-Go Eighties to today’s Billionaire Row.
From the moment in 1907 when New York millionaire Alfred Gwynne Vanderbilt strode through the Plaza Hotel’s revolving doors to become its first guest, to the afternoon in 2007 when a mysterious Russian oligarch paid a record price for the hotel’s largest penthouse, the eighteen-story white marble edifice at the corner of Fifth Avenue and 59th Street has radiated wealth and luxury.
For some, the hotel evokes images of F. Scott Fitzgerald frolicking in the Pulitzer Fountain, or Eloise, the impish young guest who pours water down the mail chute. But the true stories captured in THE PLAZA: The Secret Life of America’s Most Famous Hotel also include dark, hidden secrets: from the cold-blooded murder perpetrated by the construction workers in charge of building the hotel, to how Donald J. Trump came to be the only owner to ever bankrupt the Plaza.
Julie Satow is an award-winning journalist who has covered real estate in New York City for more than a decade. A regular contributor to the New York Times, her work has also appeared on National Public Radio, the New York Post, The Daily Beast and elsewhere.