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Application for Renovations to the Four Seasons Filed Without Owners' Knowledge

The restaurant could be forced to move next year. Is landlord Aby Rosen starting to plan its replacement?

Daniel Krieger

Tomorrow night the Landmarks Committee for Community Board 5 will discuss an application for "restoration and alterations" to the Four Seasons, the legendary power lunch destination in the Seagram's Building. This application, however, was apparently filed without the knowledge of the Four Seasons' owners, Alex von Bidder and Julian Niccolini. As von Bidder told the post, he didn't know about the application until he saw signs about the community board meeting posted to a lamppost outside the restaurant.

Presumably, then, the application has been filed by Aby Rosen, the owner of the building and the restaurant's landlord. What the renovations will entail, or what they'll mean for the restaurant is still unclear. At the moment, von Bidder and Niccolini are still supposedly involved in ongoing discussions with Rosen over the Four Season's future – when the current lease expires next year, it could face a significant rent hike, which would force the restaurant to move from its home of over 50 years. So are the renovations tied to a new restaurant Rosen wants to put in the Four Seasons' place? Only time (and perhaps tomorrow's meeting) will tell. For their part, von Bidder and Niccolini are actively scouting for new locations, and planning a $1959-a-head blowout for the day their lease expires. So it would stand to reason that Rosen is making some preliminary plans of his own.

The Four Seasons Restaurant

280 Park Ave., New York, NY 10017 212 754 9494