As part of the renovation project of the Cultural Services of the French Embassy in New York, Atelier de Ricou was selected to restore the Ballroom and the Marble Room. After restoring the Venetian Room in the same building several years ago they were honored to be able to continue to preserve this historic space. They were tasked to restore this Payne Whitney mansion on 5th Avenue to its Gilded Age splendor while infusing it with a contemporary spirit. By using a historical analysis, it provided them with some valuable sources of inspiration: a high ceiling, the ingenuity of the ballroom’s entrance portico, which made it possible to re-establish a centered composition of the room, the use of symmetry in a classical order, and finally, the use of special materials: gilding, mirrors and marble.

The Ballroom of the Cultural Services of the French Embassy

Two “false” windows have been completely recreated and added to the ballroom to bring symmetry. Mirror mosaic doors and columns as well as majestic pilasters in eglomized glass adorn the walls covered with a mural on canvas. The lanterns, designed in the Parisian workshops, echo the long curtains that adorn the windows, which were made by Jouffre and painted by Atelier de Ricou. The electrical outlets were created by Meljac.

In the Marble Room, the older sections have been restored and, in order to bring harmony to the room, L’Atelier de Ricou has created false marble that now covers the cornice and stairs.

After 1 and a half years of restoration work, the results are extraordinary!
In honor of this special achievement, on November 10th a special cocktail reception took place where both the press and interior designers were introduced to this exceptional place.

The guests were captivated by the magical atmosphere conferred by the soft and warm glow of the candles on both sides of the Ballroom, which underlined the elegance of the work done. The many journalists and other guests were able to discover the extent of the work carried out through a captivating talk given by Stéphanie de Ricou.
A sublime décor that gives back to this mansion its magic and elegance of yesteryear.

“We are very happy to have been able to restore the Ballroom and we are particularly delighted with the final result.
We wanted to mark the occasion through this inauguration because a project like this, we do not see fifty in our lives. Of course, we had to face, alas, the Covid conditions that forced us to go back and forth. We are all the more proud to have succeeded in carrying out this unlikely project and we are very grateful for all the people who helped us to make it a reality .” – Stéphanie de Ricou