News Releases


Multi-Million Dollar Transformation Combines Design and State-of-the-Art Technology

NEW YORK, NY (May 21, 2009) – An elegant setting which has hosted dinners and special events for Presidents and other Heads of States, Grand Hyatt New York’s Empire Ballroom will undergo a $12 million transformation beginning this July. Scheduled for completion in September 2009, the renovation includes all 18,000 square feet of space on the hotel’s Ballroom including the luxurious foyer and pre-function space. The Empire Ballroom can host events from 100-1700 people.

Known previously as the Commodore Ballroom, it was the place where President John F. Kennedy accepted the Democratic Party nomination for President in 1960, where Martin Luther King spoke in 1956, where former President Bill and Hillary Clinton celebrated his presidency, and where many Heads of States from around the world have convened.

Using the architectural references from the original Commodore Ballroom, the new Empire Ballroom is being designed with respect to the integrity of the legendary space built in 1917. The metal grillwork that will be featured in the new Empire Ballroom as well as the overall renovation will respect and enhance the historic nature of the venue in the contemporary way of Grand Central Station.

“The Empire Ballroom is known throughout the world as a landmark location for the most significant gatherings,” said Matthew Adams, Vice President and Managing Director, Grand Hyatt New York. “The new look and feel will offer an unsurpassed venue for all styles of functions and we look forward to being the premier Ballroom in Manhattan to host the most special events.”

The guest arrival experience will be dramatic with an escalator showcasing beaded glass drapery and color changing LED lights. As guests enter the Empire Ballroom level, the new crisp, white marble foyer will feature art glass chandeliers. The warm carpet tone sets the stage for the vaulted ceilings and LED changing lights throughout.

Inside the new Empire Ballroom, a series of cast-resin sculptures at different elevations are lit from above creating a champagne sky. The ceiling offers amber spotlights that can pin spot individual tables. Traditional airwalls are being replaced with wood-clad columns to separate the five spaces, Salons A, B, C, D and E. A permanent stage will extend out and retract when not in use. The foyer will have flexible and moveable registration pods to accommodate multiple functions in the same space. 

State-of-the art audio-visual sound is being installed along with permanent drop-down projection screens. An updated lighting control system will be able to create multiple hues and color tones to reflect the mood of the event. Both the Ballroom and Foyer will feature an enhanced communications and data package, featuring category 6 communications infrastructure to meet the needs of today’s meetings.

To learn more about Grand Hyatt New York, please visit or call 1-800-233-1234 or 1-212-883-1234.

About Grand Hyatt New York
With a premier location on 42nd Street between Park and Lexington Avenues, the Grand Hyatt New York lies in the heart of mid-town Manhattan. Attached to the legendary Grand Central Terminal, the Grand Hyatt is just steps away from the city’s best culture and attractions, including Times Square, Broadway, art, culinary experiences and world-class shopping.

The hotel has 1,311 guest rooms including 51 suites. The suites range in size from 600 to more than 3,500 square feet. The guest rooms have been recently renovated and feature the Hyatt “Grand Bed” and have large workspaces. The Grand Club provides added luxury offering elevator key access, complimentary breakfast, afternoon snacks and evening hors d’oeuvres and drinks. The Grand Hyatt New York is perfect for groups of any size. Boasting over 50 meeting rooms and 55,000 square feet of meeting space, the hotel can accommodate groups from 10 to 1,700 people.

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About Global Hyatt Corporation

Global Hyatt Corporation, headquartered in Chicago, is one of the world’s premier hotel companies. The hotels owned, operated, managed or franchised by its subsidiaries provide authentic hospitality to guests in 44 countries through a passionate commitment to personalized service, cultural relevance, and the environment. Global Hyatt subsidiaries own, operate, manage or franchise more than 370 hotels and resorts worldwide under the Hyatt®, Hyatt Regency®, Hyatt Resorts™, Grand Hyatt®, Park Hyatt®, Hyatt Place®, Hyatt Summerfield Suites® and Andaz™ brands with additional properties under development on five continents. Global Hyatt Corporation is also the owner of Hyatt Vacation Ownership, Inc., operator of Hyatt Vacation Club®. The success of Global Hyatt is driven by the commitment and energy of the thousands of men and women around the world who provide exceptional service to hotel guests. From the U.S. and Canada, reservations for any Hyatt hotel worldwide may be obtained by calling 1-800-233-1234 or visiting

Casper van Eldik Thieme
Grand Hyatt New York 646-213-6675

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