Inside the Landmarked Lavatories of the Four Seasons

Miss Piggy would love the women's-room lounge.Photo: Daniel Maurer


According to Adam Platt, the venerable Four Seasons Restaurant contains the city’s greatest dining room (the restaurant's interior is actually landmarked). We wondered whether the restrooms measured up — and who gets the nicer facilities, the men or the ladies. All shall be revealed.

Use the vibrating shoe polisher (top left) at your own risk.Photo: Daniel Maurer

Theme: Designers Mies van der Rohe and onetime regular Philip Johnson got modern with marble. Gray marble and dark wood paneling make the men’s lounge feel a bit overcast, but the women’s lounge is cheerier: It includes an anteroom with a leather bench, puffy suede walls, and makeup-room mirrors fit for Marilyn Monroe.

Privacy: The slim stalls completely cocoon one in marble and oak; they're sort of like coffins, in a good way.

Amenities: Gentlemen get quilted toilet paper in the stall; at the sink, Scope, John Varvatos cologne, a lint roller, and the coup de grâce: a fifties-era stand-up electronic shoe polisher. Women get candles in the stalls; in the lounge, tissues for blotting lipstick.

Drawbacks: Obligation to schmooze the attendants.

Strategy: No need to shell out $68 for a lobster: The men’s room is right next to the front entrance, so pedestrians can duck in and out unmolested. Just remember: Jackets required.

Rating: — Daniel Maurer