Emery Roth was a prolific New York City architect who designed many notable buildings in the 1920s and ’30s. He was renowned for elegant prewar Manhattan apartment buildings like The Beresford, The San Remo, Ritz Tower, and The Whitby. He also designed a number of Art Deco buildings in the Bronx, some of which have been mostly forgotten. For much of his life, Emery Roth lived at 210 West 101st Street on the Upper West Side with his family. in the penthouse he designed. In honor of his birthday, we’re offering an exclusive peek into our Untapped New York Insider on-demand archive and sharing our celebratory talk from Roth’s 150th birthday!
This special virtual event was designed to celebrate one of New York City’s greatest architects and his family’s legendary firms Emery Roth & Sons. We celebrated Emery Roth’s 150 birthday with the Roth family and architectural author, Andrew Alpern. Alpern treated guests to the saga of a family of architects, from the first generation’s development of luxury apartment houses through the second and third generation’s re-imagination of office buildings as machines to maximize land value. Members of the Roth Family also spoke, including the late architect Richard Roth, Jr. and Emery Roth II.
Discover just how many Emery Roth buildings are still with us and why their beauty still captivates New Yorkers today. Listen to stories about Emery’s life both as a famed architect and as the head of an architectural family whose buildings would go on to influence the New York City skyline for most of the 20th Century. And be guided through a curated virtual tour of Emery Roth buildings led by Andrew Alpern himself.
Roth designed nearly 50 buildings, nearly all of which were near Central Park. Emery Roth & Sons, founded just a year or so before his death in 1948, would go on to design another 125 or so buildings, including modern skyscrapers and more Beaux-Arts-style buildings.
Richard Roth Jr., in honor of his grandfather’s legacy, has continued the storied legacy of his family’s firm, Emery Roth and Sons, when Project X was thrown into his lap. It was slated to be a high-profile tower directly behind Grand Central Terminal that would change Park Avenue forever. The project would bring two of the biggest names in architecture together, Walter Gropius and Pietro Belluschi, and it was Richard’s job to make sure it all came together. The result was a building that set the tenure of a late 20th-century Park Avenue and a structure that still fascinates New Yorkers today: the Pan Am Building, now called the MetLife Building.
Justin Rivers, Untapped New York’s Chief Experience Officer, interviewed Emery Roth’s grandsons Richard Roth Jr, his brother Emery Roth II, and his daughter Robyn Roth-Moise for a video exclusive to our Untapped New York Insiders archive. In it, the Roths spoke about the legacy of their grandfather (and great-grandfather for Robyn). It revolves around their memories of the legendary architect, some of his greatest works, and Emery’s apartment on the Upper West Side that was in the Roth family for many years. Richard and Emery II, who goes by Ted, spent portions of their respective childhoods either living or visiting there. Robyn also remembers having select family holidays there. You can unlock these interviews and over 200 more on-demand webinars by becoming an Untapped New York Insider! Get your first month free with code JOINUS.
Next, check out the Top 10 Secrets of the MetLife Building!