By Marina Stanley
City dwellers may be craving a return to 2019-like normalcy, but for visitors to Manhattan it will soon be possible to rewind the clock much further: to the early 1960s.
That's courtesy of the storied Plaza Hotel and Amazon Prime Video, which are teaming up to recreate aspects of the hit show The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel.
The Emmy award-winning comedy is streaming its fourth season on Amazon Prime. Although the hotel itself is not prominently featured in the show, a suite on its 12th floor has been converted into a replica of main character Midge Maisel's Upper West Side apartment.
The room at the historic Plaza on Fifth Avenue is filled with mid-century art, antiques, and furniture similar to those sourced by the show's designers; the dark wooden, carved headboard is an exact replica of the one on set. Perhaps most enticing will be the closet, loaded with such Midge-inspired outfits as her signature wide-lapel wool coats and pearl jewellery, which guests can wear and purchase on site.
Overnights, available from February 10 to April 10, will start at $1 675 9about R25 000), reflecting nearly a 50% premium over the Plaza's one-bedroom suites. The rates include a themed afternoon tea menu and Midge-inspired blowout from the hotel salon.
While the TV-themed suite is hardly the first of its kind-a Queen's Gambit-inspired room at the 21C hotel in Lexington, Ky., is just one recent example-the Mrs. Maisel collaboration represents a unique partnership between an iconic hotel and the streaming giant, which itself has footed a portion of the costs to get the suite up and running. (Representatives from both companies declined to share details on the size or share of the total investment.)
For the the Plaza, the partnership comes at a good time. The 115-year-old hotel has struggled to regain footing after being acquired by Qatari sovereign wealth fund Katara Hospitality for $600 million in June 2018 and subsequently closing for a year amid the pandemic. And themed suites have historically represented good business for the property: According to Crystal Laurence, the hotel's director of sales and marketing, its 10-year-old Eloise suite has seen such consistent, year-round demand that it's become one of the hotel's signatures.
Amazon and the Plaza are hoping to generate buzz beyond the suite with additional offerings that can bring in a local crowd. Some of the show's costumes and props, including one of Midge's gold handbags and a pair of her long, green, leather gloves, are on display in glass showcases throughout the hotel lobby.
And a special riff on the Plaza's signature Afternoon Tea, from $99 a person, includes black-and-white cookie-inspired macarons and gussied-up pastrami finger sandwiches that pay homage to Midge's '60s Jewish New York.
Laurence expects the appeal to be even broader than the show's sizeable fan base. "The quintessential New York items on the menu will resonate, even if someone's never seen the show," she says.