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July 19, 1946 |
New York City, New York
|Children||Sophia, Ava & Louis|
|The Ian Schrager Company|
Ian Schrager (born July 19, 1946) is an American entrepreneur, hotelier and real estate developer. Often associated with co-creating of the Boutique Hotel category of accommodation. Originally, he gained fame as co-owner and co-founder of Studio 54.
Early years 
Schrager grew up in a Jewish family in Brooklyn. His father Louis owned a factory in Long Branch, New Jersey. which manufactured women’s coats and died when Schrager was 19. His mother Blanche died when he was 23. He received a Bachelor of Arts from Syracuse University in 1968 and a Juris Doctorate from St. John's University School of Law in 1971. In December 1975, after practicing law for three years, Schrager and his close friend Steve Rubell opened Enchanted Garden, a disco in Douglaston, Queens. Within 6 months, they were looking to open a night club in Manhattan. They signed the lease for Studio 54 in January 1977 and 6 weeks later it opened.
Studio 54 Era 
Schrager felt something in the air–he recognized a significant void in the nightlife industry and with Rubell, developed the nightclub discothèque Studio 54. It was a response to the social revolution and captured the breaking down of social and cultural barriers. They transformed the old Gallo Opera House on West 54th Street in New York City into a new age, spectacular nightclub. The club's ambiance was constantly changing: using the space's original theatrical infrastructure, they were able to dramatically change the environment and size of the space multiple times a night—something that had never been done before. The club was exciting and always doing something different and unexpected. They often hosted special "one night only" performance art pieces and theme parties for which the club completely metamorphosed; every night it was transformed into something new, original and different. Studio 54 took the nightclub scene by storm and was an instant success. To this day, it is considered the most significant and famous nightclub of all time.
After Studio 54, Schrager and Rubell opened their next nightclub, Palladium, in the old Academy of Music building in New York City. It was the first of its kind in that Schrager made art a focal point of the club's experience. He collaborated with cutting-edge artists Francesco Clemente, Jean-Michel Basquiat, Julian Schnabel, Kenny Scharf, and Keith Haring to create a dramatic, curated environment. Large video installations lining the dance floor were "undeniably powerful" as part of the art and architecture; throughout the night multiple dynamic installations were featured as the screens were raised and lowered like pieces of a stage set. Schrager and Rubell enlisted world-renowned Japanese architect Arata Isozaki—his first project in America—to reimagine the old music hall into a nightclub while still maintaining the space's integrity. Schrager recognized the power great architecture had to influence an environment; working with Arata was just the beginning of his dabbing in architecture. He has since worked with iconic architects, artists and designers such as Philippe Starck, Herzog & de Meuron, Andree Putnam, Julian Schnabel and John Pawson to name a few.
Morgans Hotel Group 
In the 1980s, Schrager and his business partner Rubell turned their attention to hotels and found that their "on the pulse", keen instincts for the mood and feel of popular culture gave them a unique perspective that would allow them to significantly impact the hospitality industry just as they had done with nightlife. Their first hotel, Morgans, opened in 1984 and was an instant hit, introducing the boutique lifestyle hotel to the world. Following the success of Morgans, they opened the well received and highly successful Royalton Hotel and Paramount Hotel. With these properties, Schrager introduced "lobby socializing" whereby the hotel lobby became a new kind of gathering place for hotel guests and New York City residents alike.
Schrager is also credited with inventing the "Urban Resort" with his Delano Hotel in Miami and Mondrian Hotel in West Hollywood. These were followed by the Hudson Hotel in New York, where he fully realized his concept "hotel as lifestyle" which he continued to refine, expanding to cities such as San Francisco with the Clift Hotel and London with St. Martins Lane Hotel and the Sanderson Hotel. He stayed with the hotel business and went solo after he lost his partner Steve Rubell, who died of early exposure to AIDS on July 25, 1989.
Ian Schrager Company 
In 2005, Schrager sold Morgans Hotel Group, a company he founded, to create Ian Schrager Company which owns, develops and manages hotels, residential and mixed use projects. Since then, he has collaborated with Julian Schnabel to transform the fabled Gramercy Park Hotel in New York City (which he no longer owns). Schrager has also created two groundbreaking residential properties: 40 Bond and 50 Gramercy Park North. 40 Bond was designed by Swiss architects Herzog & de Meuron as their first residential project in America. With 50 Gramercy Park North, Schrager introduced the idea of "effortless living". The project, designed by John Pawson, offered all the benefits of owning a home, the services of a 5-Star hotel, plus the concept of "executive lifestyle management" that provides a completely staffed household without the hassles and inconveniences of ownership.
Schrager is currently working on two new hotel brands. The first brand, PUBLIC, is a new genre of hotel offering great value, great service and great style that will set a new industry standard. Ian Schrager has taken the best from the luxury set, the best from the boutique/lifestyle set and the best from select service and created a new breed of hotel where everything has been rethought and every original idea updated. This brand will be defined by the unique experience it creates rather than by a business classification or price.
The first hotel, PUBLIC Chicago, debuted in October 2011 to critical acclaim. The second brand, yet to be announced, will be a new kind of luxury brand for modern people.
Schrager’s latest venture is a partnership with Marriott International, intending to create a new brand of hotel with about 100 properties to be located in cities throughout North America and South America, Europe and Asia. EDITION currently has one hotel, The Istanbul EDITION, located in Istanbul Turkey. New hotels are slated to open in London, Miami Beach, New York City, Bangkok, Abu Dhabi, and India.
Personal life 
In November 2008, he married Tania Wahlstedt (maiden name Garcia-Stefanovich), a former ballerina with the New York City Ballet. She has two daughters, Amanda and Lili Wahlstedt, from a previous marriage. They also have a son together, Louis.
- De Lollis, Barbara (2010-10-14). "Boutique hotel guru Ian Schrager: Can hotel lighting be too dark?". USA Today.
- The Guardian: "The king of Manhattan is backMammon: Ian Schrager won his style spurs with Studio 54. Now he unveils a cool new look for his hotels" by Nick Mathiason October 24, 2004
- Evening Standard Magazine: "The Hippest Hotel Guy" By Charles Gandee retrieved October 13, 2012
- "Tania Wahlstedt and Ian Schrager". nytimes.com. 2008-11-15. Retrieved 2008-11-27.
- Martin, Douglas (1988-07-11). "New Yorkers & Co". The New York Times. Retrieved 2010-05-04.
- Goldberger, Paul (1985-05-20). "An Appraisal; The Palladium: An Architecturally Dramatic New Discotheque". The New York Times.
- New York Media, LLC (22 July 1985). New York Magazine. New York Media, LLC. pp. 28–39. ISSN 00287369. Retrieved 25 April 2013.
- Stodghill, Ron (19 August 2007). "A Hotelier Is Breaking the Mold Once Again". The New York Times. Retrieved 25 April 2013.
- Stodgehill, Ron (2007-08-21). "Going Boutique: Ian Schrager and Marriott forge a partnership". International Herald-Tribune. Retrieved 2007-12-29.
Further reading 
- The New York Times - Nov. 27, 2008
- TimesOnline (UK) - Marriott goes for boutique hotels, Nov. 11, 2007
- The New York Times - A Hotelier Is Breaking the Mold Once Again, Aug. 24, 2007
- Travel & Leisure - Design Champion 2007
- Reuters - Hotelier Ian Schrager draws lessons from Apple, July 24, 2007
- Calderone, Michael (2006-01-16). "The Bond Street Boys". The New York Observer. Unknown parameter
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- Daily Truffle - Ian Schrager Opens New Waikiki Hotel "The Edition" with Christina Aguilera, October 18, 2010