Corner (721 5th Ave): A 68-story
residential tower with a saw-toothed facade
designed to create as many "corner" apartments
as possible. Completed in 1983, it's been
home to stars and celebs like
Johnny Carson, Steven Spielberg, Dick Clark,
Sophia Loren, Fay Wray, Paul Anka, Pia Zadora,
Martina Navratilova and Andrew Lloyd Webber.
Michael Jackson and Lisa Marie Presley had
their honeymoon here.
Featured in The Devil's Advocate,
I'll Take Manhattan and Spider-Man.
Gucci's flagship superstore moved here in 2008.
Formerly on the site was Bonwit Teller,
department store founded in 1897 and moved here
in 1930, to an Art Deco store designed by Warren &
Wetmore and almost immediately redesigned by Eli Jacques
Salvador Dali smashed the window here on
March 15, 1939, furious that the store
had altered the display he had designed.
The company folded not longer after Trump
forced one last move.
33: This was the site of the James Donahue mansion, where he married Jessie Woolworth, one of the heirs to the five-and-dime fortune, and where their sons Woolworth and James Donahue, favorites of the society pages, were born. The elder Donahue later committed suicide after amassing $7 million in gambling debts here. The building became
Club Napoleon, a prominent speakeasy of the Prohibition era, operated by the Stork Club's Sherman Billingsley and Tommy Guinan, Tex Guinan's brother. It was later operated by the racketeer Larry Fay, who called it Casa Blanca and added gambling to the bootleg liquor; he was shot and killed on the former mansion's marble staircase by a disgruntled employee on January 1, 1933.
After repeal, the liquor board refused to give it a licence under the Club Napoleon name; a state official, reading of the marble staircases and tapestries, remarked, "Sounds like a pretty elegant place--why not call it that?" It did legitimate business for years as Place Elegante.
The site's transition from high-society mansion to speakeasy inspired two films--Night After Night (which introduced Mae West, and her catchphrase "goodness had nothing to do with it," to the screen), and The House on 56th Street. Speakeasy scenes in the film The Helen Morgan Story were shot here.
Corner (590 Madison Ave): A 40-story wedge-shaped glass
office building erected in 1983,
designed by Edward Larrabee Barnes for the
computer giant, which moved out in the early 1990s.
The dramatically cantilevered entrance
reportedly added $10 million to the construction
cost; a red Alexander Calder sculpture was
added later. The building includes a bamboo-filled atrium,
whose entrance features the fountain
by Michael Heizer. The former IBM Gallery served as
the home for the
Dahesh Museum of Art, a collection
of academic art founded by a Persian mystic, from
2003 until 2008.