Jean-Louis Deniot, Waldorf Astoria.

Portrait of Jean-Louis Deniot by David Oliver, courtesy of the Waldorf Astoria.

the Waldorf Astoria.

Rendering by Noë & Associates / The Boundary; courtesy of the Waldorf Astoria.

the Waldorf Astoria.

Rendering by Noë & Associates / The Boundary; courtesy of the Waldorf Astoria.

the Waldorf Astoria.

Rendering by Noë & Associates / The Boundary; courtesy of the Waldorf Astoria.

the Waldorf Astoria.

Rendering by Noë & Associates / The Boundary; courtesy of the Waldorf Astoria.

the Waldorf Astoria.

Rendering by Noë & Associates / The Boundary; courtesy of the Waldorf Astoria.

the Waldorf Astoria.

Rendering by Noë & Associates / The Boundary; courtesy of the Waldorf Astoria.

the Waldorf Astoria.

Rendering by Noë & Associates / The Boundary; courtesy of the Waldorf Astoria.

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New York

Checking In: Jean-Louis Deniot’s Groundbreaking Quiet Time

On March 3, we attended a preview inside The Towers of the Waldorf Astoria. After being closed since 2017 for a $1B renovation, the property reopened with anticipated news that attracted both travelers and buyers alike. In addition to welcoming guests to its 375 hotel rooms, the property also, for the first time, is welcoming buyers to 375 residences. Those looking for a new property can now purchase a home—and a piece of history—within the New York City landmark.

The new residential component within the Waldorf Astoria reveals major collaborations—with developer Andrew Miller of Dajia US; architect Frank Mahan of Skidmore, Owings & Merrill; and interior designer Jean-Louis Deniot.

Inside, The Towers of the Waldorf Astoria properties sparkle with grandeur design and modern comforts. Within an Art Deco atmosphere, kitchens feature wood and custom-designed cabinetry by Deniot and fabricated by Molteni&C; the master bathroom offers heated floors, rain showers, and custom Italian vanities; and closets open up to dressing rooms, featuring handcrafted finishes and contemporary touches.

Recently, Whitewall got in touch with Deniot to see how he was doing amid COVID-19, and to hear how history and nature is inspiring him.

WHITEWALL: How are you doing?

JEAN-LOUIS DENIOT: Great. This surprise quiet timeframe is a great opportunity to reset all clocks.

WW: What are you listening to, reading, or watching?

JD: I listen to radiomeuh.com, NTS, and Spotify. I read a lot online, of great variety—a lot of architectural history of all periods, as I find something pleasing and interesting in every single style. Every style and genre is defendable. I am attracted to every single style as it corresponds to a particular era.

I love to go back through history and look at all those various expectations. Style itself is always a renewal and regeneration of something old. It shows culture, because when you take something old and make it new, you have culture.

I am watching every James Bond film possible. I love a variety of documentaries. The music can be amazing, as well as the cinematography and the stories.

WW: What are you cooking?

JD: I’ve been working intensely, with the most immense pleasure, on the Waldorf Astoria in New York City. I’ve created the most stately interiors in order to captivate the maximum audience possible and to sell 375 condo apartments. Future buyers will be able to enjoy themselves amongst over 50,000 square feet of amenity spaces. I’m having a blast.

WW: How are you staying connected?

JD: I consider the Internet to be one of many tools to stay connected. Just like a pencil, a book, or a photo, these are just tools. I remain connected with my world 24/7. My job is to be connected with beauty, balance, and osmosis. I am never disconnected.

WW: How are you staying creative? Are you able to make work at this time?

JD: For a creative, there is nothing better than having some time to contemplate, whilst the world is on the same page—where there is no need to retreat in order to create. This pace is now today’s momentum. Because we’re all staying put, the focus on the now is stronger. Time can be stretched, and obligations compacted, so there is plenty of room for creativity!

WW: Where are you finding hope or inspiration?

JD: I think you can find inspiration as soon as you have reached peace and freedom. I appreciate how serene and how grounding this quiet time can be.

When you’re out of inspiration, there is nothing more beautiful than nature. Anyone can cut a few branches outside, place them in a vase, and bring some inspiration back into your house. You don’t need a laptop or the internet, you can find beautiful inspiration by drawing from nature. The inspiration comes from our interaction with nature.

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