One of New York City’s most extravagant department store buildings, Lord & Taylor, has been standing tall on Fifth Avenue, between 38th and 39th streets, since 1914. Named a New York City Landmark in 2007, the building has been a major icon of the city for more than a century — and now, it is being sold and transformed into WeWork’s global headquarters. Hudson’s Bay, the company that owns the department store chain, said on Tuesday that it was selling its flagship store, according to The New York Times.
For those interested in learning about the building’s vast history before it is forever transformed, read on to discover its many secrets:
10. The Lavish Facilities Once Inside Lord & Taylor
Inside Lord & Taylor today
As grand and elegant as the Fifth Avenue Lord & Taylor building appears on the outside, no one could have possibly imagined the luxurious features that were once in the shop. Upon its opening in 1914, the building included a gymnasium, an open-air promenade, and even an entrance for customers to entire the building directly in their cars. It also contained a concert hall, housing a $75,000 Welte Mignon Pipe Organ claimed to have the greatest tone and quality possible.
The store also offered some unique shopping features for customers. For example, the equestrian section contained a mechanical horse that mimicked trotting and walking movements, so that customers would be accurately fit for their riding needs. There were also dressing rooms with multiple lighting options so that customers could see how their attire would look in various settings. Lastly, the store contained general waiting and rest rooms equipped with telephones, telegraphs, a cable office, a post office, and a traveling bureau.