About Steinway Hall
Located on West 57th Street in the heart of Midtown Manhattan, Steinway Hall is the legendary flagship store of Steinway & Sons. Since opening in 1925, it has been a landmark destination, imbued with a rich history and tradition, eagerly sought out by music enthusiasts, piano students and professionals throughout the world. Three floors of elegant, distinctive selection rooms are filled with more than 150 Steinway and Steinway-designed Boston and Essex instruments.
Built to the specifications of the Steinway family, and designed by the architects Warren & Wetmore (Grand Central Terminal, New York Yacht Club), Steinway Hall is a grand testament to the beaux arts tradition, a registered New York City historic landmark, and above all an environment rich with passion. The breathtaking two-story rotunda is the dramatic centerpiece of Steinway Hall. The spectacular 35-foot domed ceiling was handpainted by Paul Arndt, with allegorical scenes of lions, elephants, goddesses and nymphs depicting the influence of music on human relations. The walls are adorned with fluted white Italian marble columns alternating with green pilasters of highly polished Greek marble. Descending from the ceiling is a magnificent, glittering 19th century Viennese crystal chandelier.
Steinway & Sons commissioned esteemed American artists to create paintings that would create a rich visual landscape throughout Steinway Hall. Original oil paintings depict great composers, such as Berlioz, Chopin, Handel, Mozart and Wagner, or legendary pianists, such as Franz Liszt. Ignaz Paderewski, Sergei Rachmaninoff and Anton Rubinstein. Many distinguished artists are represented, including Rockwell Kent, N.C . Wyeth and Charles Chambers, overall creating the effect of an opulent art museum where grand pianos are on display.
Beyond the rotunda, a gallery displays memorabilia collected by five generations of Steinways, giving life to the history of Steinway & Sons as well as a glimpse into America’s rich musical history. Included in the display cases are awards and medals presented to Steinway & Sons during more than 155 years of piano making, insignias noting the firm’s appointment as official supplier of pianos to the world’s great concert halls, scale models of historic Steinway pianos, and displays of meticulously-crafted parts and materials used in all Steinway pianos, whether for the home or for the concert stage.
Also on display are the other members of the Family of Steinway-Designed Pianos, including the Boston and Essex piano lines. Both lines have been designed by Steinway & Sons and made to our specifications to accommodate those clients who seek outstanding quality features in mid-priced and introductory-priced instruments. Magnificent, one-of-a-kind instruments from Steinway’s custom made art case collection, pianos made in exotic wood finishes from the Crown Jewel collection and specially designed pianos from the Limited Edition series are all found within the walls of Steinway Hall.
Below street level is the world famous Steinway Basement. Here, all Steinway pianos to be delivered in the New York area are scrutinized by a team of specially-trained technicians. In addition to inspecting every detail of cabinetry, they tune, regulate, and make certain that the fine tolerances in each instrument’s action mechanism meet the uncompromising Steinway standard.
At the 58th Street side of the basement is the renowned Steinway “piano bank” where piano professionals come to select instruments they will use in concerts, in recordings, and on tour. As one accomplished concert pianist put it, “There isn’t a first class piano player in the world who does not expect to visit the Steinway Hall concert basement before a New York performance. It is a piano mecca – sort of the center of the piano universe.”