Today, July 31, 2012, marks the closing of The Ritz for major renovations.  The grand hotel closed in stages, starting with the Escoffier cooking school and the Hemingway Bar.  The Ritz has been home to some of the most world-famous cultural icons in history, including Marcel Proust, Coco Chanel, and Ernest Hemingway, who is rumored to have declared that he liberated the Ritz at the end of WWII.  Though Hemingway did not, in fact, liberate the Ritz, he will always be remembered for his patronage of the famous bar that now bears his name and displays his memorabilia.

A portrait and bust of Ernest Hemingway, one of the bar’s most famous clients.

Colin Field, the bartender who put the Hemingway Bar on the map.