Balazs at the 2012 Time 100 gala
André Tomas Balazs|
January 31, 1957
Boston, Massachusetts, USA
|Occupation||Hotelier and residential developer|
|Known for||Standard Hotels Chateau Marmont|
(m. 1985; div. 2004)
Uma Thurman (2004–2007, 2015–2016) |
Chelsea Handler (2010–2013)
Cosima Vesey (2017–present)
André Tomes Balazs (born January 31, 1957) is the president and CEO of André Balazs Properties that includes a portfolio of hotels across the United States and residences in New York, especially in New York City.
Early and personal life
Balazs was born in Boston, Massachusetts. He graduated from Cornell University as a College Scholar and member of the Quill and Dagger society, and then earned a master's degree in business and journalism from Columbia University. He was a founding trustee of the New York Academy of Art, and has served as a member of the board of directors of the New York Public Theater and Wolfsonian-FIU. He was the recipient of the Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum Design Patron Award.
Balazs married Katie Ford on November 16, 1985; they divorced in 2004. They have two daughters, Alexandra (born 1991) and Isabel (born 1994). He was engaged to actress Uma Thurman between 2004 and 2007, and the couple again dated in 2015/16.
Sexual Assault Allegation
In 2017, a New York Times article reported that Balazs had groped Amanda Anka at a 2014 dinner party in London in front of a group of people, including Anka's husband Jason Bateman. Bateman and his wife subsequently issued a statement as follows: "On behalf of Jason Bateman and Amanda Anka, we can confirm that the account of André Balazs's outrageous and vile behaviour on that night in London is factual."
André Balazs Properties currently consists of eight hotels across the US. The luxury group comprises The Mercer Hotel in New York City; Chateau Marmont in Hollywood; Chiltern Firehouse in London and Sunset Beach on Shelter Island. The Standard hotels include: The Standard, Hollywood; The Standard, Downtown LA; The Standard Spa, Miami Beach; The Standard, High Line, Meatpacking District; and The Standard, East Village.
In his early years, Balazs worked at Biomatrix, a New Jersey based bio-tech company founded by his father. In 1990, he purchased Chateau Marmont, subsequently launching his career as a hotelier. Located on Sunset Boulevard, the building was initially built in 1929 as apartments, modeled after Chateau d'Amboise, a royal retreat in France's Loire Valley.
In 1997, Balazs opened Sunset Beach, a luxury boutique hotel and restaurant, open seasonally and located on Shelter Island in New York. The property features 20 rooms and also houses a boutique featuring designer pieces of apparel, jewelry, and beach accessories.
In 1998, Balazs expanded his hotel collection when he purchased and restored The Mercer hotel in downtown New York. Designed by French designer Christian Liaigre, The Mercer offers 75 guest rooms on six floors of a Romanesque revival building.
The Standard, Hollywood is the first of Balazs's Standard hotels. Opened in 1998 on the Sunset Strip, the 139-room hotel features a 24-hour restaurant, shag carpeted floor-to-ceiling lobby with nightly DJs and video art.
The fourth and largest Standard hotel (337 rooms, 18 floors), opened in 2008 and is located in Manhattan's thriving Meatpacking District. The riverfront hotel bridges over the elevated High Line Park. The Standard, New York features The Standard Grill, the hotel's restaurant as well as an outdoor Biergarten, serving traditional German food and beer, and Le Bain and Top of The Standard.
Balazs has placed a strong focus on the culinary programs for each of his properties. The restaurants at the properties include the Standard Grill at The Standard, New York, under the helm of Michelin chef Dan Silverman; The Lido Restaurant and Bayside Grill at The Standard Spa, Miami and Sunset Beach, with Executive Chef Mark Zeitouni; Bar Marmont and the terrace restaurant at Chateau Marmont with Carolynn Spence; and The Standard Biergartens in New York and Downtown LA with Kurt Gutenbrunner. Other chefs in the company stable include Jean-Georges Vongerichten at The Mercer Kitchen and Micah Fields at The Standard, Downtown LA.
In addition to his role as a hotelier and restaurateur, Balazs is currently revitalizing The Locusts, a historical private estate and retreat in Staatsburg, New York; as well as restoring the farm operations on the property, which supplies fresh produce and farm-raised meats to The Standard Grill in New York City.
In 2007, Balazs began a collaboration with Wölffer Estate Vineyard on Long Island to create his own vintage of rosé.
He also owns the Chiltern Firehouse, a hotel in a former fire station in London. Chiltern Firehouse was designed in conjunction with Studio KO, though Balazs is known to be personally heavily involved in the design of his hotels and it includes bar areas, a restaurant run by former Viajante chef Nuno Mendes and 26 suites.
- "Miss Ford Plans To Become Bride Of Andre Balazs". The New York Times. July 21, 1985.
- Holson, Laura M. (November 9, 2017). "André Balasz, Celebrity Hotelier, Is Accused of Groping". The New York Times.
- Harriet Alexander (9 November 2017). "Andre Balazs accused of groping Jason Bateman's wife at Chiltern Firehouse". The Telegraph. Retrieved 14 February 2018.
- Matt Tyrnauer (February 2009). "Hop on the High Line". Vanity Fair.
- Steve Cuozzo. "Lefrak Builds Tower of Power". New York Post. Archived from the original on April 25, 2010.
- Sam Knight (May 2008). "One Kenmare Square: There Is No There There". The New York Times.
- Suzanne Slesin (April 2007). "Me! Me! Me! All the Way Home". The New York Times.
- Jean Nathan (August 1993). "What's Up in the Old Hotel". The New York Times.
- Roxanne Golding (2012). "Summer At Sunset Beach". Beach Tomato. Archived from the original on 2012-06-30.
- George Gurley (March 1998). "Up in the Old New Mercer Hotel". New York Observer.
- Matt Tyrnauer (June 1999). "Hotel California" (PDF). Vanity Fair.
- Matt Tyrnauer (June 1999). "The Standard, Downtown LA". Vanity Fair.
- Amanda Kludt (June 2009). "Good News/Bad News: The Standard Grill". Eater.
- Lockhart (June 2004). "Balazs To Build in Meatpacking". Curbed.
- Amanda Schwab (November 2011). "Standard East!". New York Post.
- Steve Cuozzo (August 2011). "Grill of Your Dreams". New York Post.
- "Chef Mark Zeitouni". StarChefs.com. May 2011.
- Kate Krader (February 2007). "At Bar Marmont". Food & Wine.
- Pauline Sung (October 2011). "Biergarten Opens on Rooftop of LA's Standard". Haute Living.
- Maria Jayne (July 2012). "Locusts on the Hudson plans organic farm at Mills-Norrie State Park". Poughkeepsie Journal.
- Juliana (May 2008). "Andre Balazs's Dark Secret Wine". Hotel Chatter.
- Matt Tyrnauer. "Andre Balazs: Prepared For Takeoff". Hamptons.
- Hyslop, Leah (13 June 2014). "What's all the fuss about the Chiltern Firehouse?". The Telegraph. Retrieved 17 June 2014.
- Curated, Something. "André Balazs: Creator of Experiences and Spatial Storyteller". Something Curated. Something Curated. Retrieved 14 February 2017.
- Grigoriadis, Vanessa (October 31, 2005). "Prince Street Prince". New York Magazine. Retrieved December 12, 2012.
- Novack, Kate (August 14, 2007). "André Balazs". Time. Retrieved December 12, 2012.
- Ouroussoff, Nicolai (April 8, 2009). "Industrial Sleek (a Park Runs Through It)". The New York Times. Retrieved December 12, 2012.
- Usbourne, David (November 18, 2006). "André Balazs: The king of America". The Independent. London. Retrieved December 12, 2012.