Café des Artistes
Café des Artistes was a fine restaurant at One West 67th Street in Manhattan and was owned by George Lang. He closed the restaurant for vacation at the beginning of August 2009 and, while away, then 85-year-old Lang decided to keep it closed permanently. He announced the closure on August 28, 2009. His wife, Jenifer Lang, had been the managing director of the restaurant since 1990.
The restaurant first opened in 1917, at street level of the Hotel des Artistes tower. Café des Artistes was designed for the residents of the Hotel des Artistes, since the apartments lacked kitchens. Artists such as Marcel Duchamp, Norman Rockwell, Isadora Duncan and Rudolph Valentino were patrons.
Late in 1985, there was a fire in the kitchen, but the restaurant was able to reopen.
In early September 2009, two years into the Great Recession, Lang announced that the café was closing; shortly thereafter, Lang filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy protection, claiming debts of nearly $500,000, some of which was owed to a union benefit trust. At the time, he also faced a lawsuit from the Hotel Employees and Restaurant Employees Union Welfare Fund.
In 2011, a new restaurant, The Leopard at des Artistes, opened in the location. According to the New York Times, it caters to those in New York society who derive "fame from power rather than the other way around".
The restaurant's famous murals, retained in the new restaurant's 2011 renovation, were painted by Howard Chandler Christy. Christy was a tenant of the building, Hotel des Artistes, until his death in 1952. There are six panels of wood nymphs, the first of which were completed in 1934. Other Christy works on display include paintings such as The Parrot Girl, The Swing Girl, Ponce De Leon, Fall, Spring, and the Fountain of Youth.
In popular cultureEdit
- 1981: It is the setting for the film My Dinner with Andre. Actual filming took place in the then-unoccupied Jefferson Hotel in Richmond, Virginia.
- 1986: It is the location of dinner in which Kim Basinger dresses in a mustache with Mickey Rourke in the film Nine 1/2 Weeks. 
- 1993: It is the location of a poker lesson in the Woody Allen film Manhattan Murder Mystery.
- 1996: In the series Friends second-season episode 21 "The One With the Bullies", Monica Geller mentions that she was a sous chef at this restaurant after returning to her apartment from a bad interview.
- 1996: The film The First Wives Club used the restaurant as the location where the three women have lunch after their friend's funeral.
- 1997: The restaurant is mentioned in the best-selling novel Reliquary by Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child.
- 2006: In the series 30 Rock first-season episode "The Blind Date", Jack Donaghy asks Liz Lemon to meet his friend, Gretchen Thomas, at the restaurant.
- 2007: In the series Gossip Girl first-season episode "Bad News Blair", the restaurant is mentioned by Eleanor Waldorf.
- 2012: In the series Gossip Girl sixth-season episode "It's Really Complicated", the restaurant is mentioned.
- Fabricant, Florence (2009-08-29). ""Café des Artistes closing"". Dinersjournal.blogs.nytimes.com. Retrieved 2017-11-10.
- "Café des Artistes history". Archived from the original on 2007-06-03. Retrieved 2006-11-30.
- New York Deco, page 127, Richard Berenholtz, Carol Willis, Maren Elizabeth Gregerson (captions), Welcome Books, 2009, ISBN 978-1-59962-078-7.
- December 18, 1985 NEW YORK DAY BY DAY Cafe des Artistes Making a Comeback
- Wells, Pete (September 9, 2009). "Aftermath". NYTimes.com.
- Sifton, Sam (2 August 2011). "The Leopard at des Artistes". The New York Times. Retrieved 18 August 2011.
- "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2013-12-24. Retrieved 2013-12-21.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link)
- "Manhattan Murder Mystery". sonymoviechannel.com. Sony/CPE US Networks. Retrieved 2015-01-12.
- "Gossip Girl". Archived from the original on 2015-01-20. Retrieved 2015-01-20.
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