Four Seasons Restaurant Auction Blasts Past Expectations

Bidders coughed up more than $4 million for the storied spot's décor and accoutrements.

The Four Seasons Restaurant
Photo: © Luay Bahoora / Alamy Stock Photo

The iconic Four Seasons restaurant in New York's Seagram Building served its final meals in its current form earlier this month following a buy-out by Major Food Group, which plans to reinvent the space with a more modern look. Tuesday, the restaurant's iconic retro interior trappings were put up for auction by the Wright auction house of Chicago, which offered hundreds of lots featuring the Four Seasons' former décor and accoutrements.

According to The New York Times, buyers, who hoped to take home a piece of the iconic space — popular among power lunchers and wedding planners alike — showed up to bid big on pieces designed by some of the world's most premiere designers, including Ludwig Mies van de Rohe and Philip Johnson, who designed the building itself.

The auction took place in the restaurant's famous pool room — where the dining tables surround a central pool, in which restaurant guests occasionally splashed around. Though early estimates anticipated the lots would take in a combined high of $1.33 million, by the time the 15-hour auction had concluded, it had earned a whopping $4.1 million from deep pocketed Four Seasons fans eager to own a part of history.

"The sale is bitter sweet for me, because I was married here," public relations executive Susan Magrino tells the Times. Magrino and her fellow nostalgic auction attendees — including Martha Stewart — bid on everything from tables to chairs to ashtrays found in the basement of one of the restaurant's owners. And, of course, the cotton candy machine that churned out the restaurant's famous dessert, which sold for $6,000.

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