In 1903, a select group of architects were invited to submit designs for the new Grand Central Terminal in a competition. The winning submission, however, was from the St. Paul firm of Reed and Stem. Reed and Stem had done other work for the New York Central, and Reed’s sister was married to William Wilgus, who by that time was the New York Central’s Vice President in charge of construction. Subsequent to the competition, New York architects Warren and Wetmore presented the selection committee with their own proposal for the terminal. Warren — a cousin of New York Central Chairman William Vanderbilt — succeeded in his “appeal.” In February 1904, Warren and Wetmore and Reed and Stem entered an agreement to act as The Associated Architects of Grand Central Terminal. Construction would last ten years. (This wording is from: http://www.grandcentralterminal.com/info/grandcentralterminal.cfm)
Monumental Statue and Tiffany Clock
To give you a feel for the scale of this building, the Louis C. Tiffany Glass Clock is 13 feet in diameter.
Grand Central Terminal officially opened on Sunday, February 2, 1913,and has been a hub of activity ever since.
Main Hall Ceiling
Relief detail over windows
This ceiling was cleaned and restored in the late 1990’s.
Light Fixtures around Main Hall
All of the lighting fixtures are plated in gold. I love the form of these and how they float over the passenger ramps.
Lighting fixtures over ramps
Lighting fixtures in Vanderbilt Hall
Vanderbilt Hall had been the main waiting room for the terminal, now it serves as an exhibition and special events space.
Outside the Oyster Bar
The ceiling inside and outside of the famous Oyster Bar was done by Guastavino. The tile is not only decorative, it is structural.
Elaborate marble carving
The marble in the terminal was carved by a number of skilled artisans and sculptors.
Campbell Apartment 1
The Campbell Apartment was originally office space for New York Central Investor and 1920’s tycoon John W. Campbell. The Campbell Apartment has been fully restored to reveal its original architectural details. It now serves as a cocktail lounge.
Campbell Apartment Fireplace
Campbell Apartment Ceiling
Front Facade at night
I see many similarities between the facade of the Idle Hour Tennis Court (below) and the Facade of Grand Central Terminal. The Idle Hour Tennis court was designed by Warren & Wetmore in 1903-1904, immediately prior to their appeal to design Grand Central Terminal in 1904.
South Facade Tennis Court Wing of Idle Hour