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10 Storied Hotels Part of Tony Bennett’s Musical Journey

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Tony Bennett is an American, show tunes, and jazz singer known for highly popular hits such as Because of You and Rags to Riches. He built his reputation as a quality nightclub act following Sinatra and other jazz singers during his era.  Before he held gigs in huge concert halls, he used to perform in nightclubs and hotels; thus, there are several places that he holds dear in his heart. Here are the top 10 hotels that are closely tied to Tony Bennett’s journey to fame.

1. The Fairmont San Francisco

The Fairmont is a historic hotel in San Francisco that’s been around for over a hundred years. Famous for its opulent décor and upscale amenities, it is located on top of Nob Hill in Fairmont—providing a picturesque view of the bustling metropolis. This is the hotel where Tony Bennett first performed his signature song I Left My Heart in San Francisco in the famous Venetian Room in 1961. To commemorate his historic success, the restoration of the hotel in 1999 placed the Venetian Room in a time capsule wherein Tony Bennett’s personal items such as the Baccarat crystal heart was displayed.

Read our Storied Hotels Feature piece about The Fairmont San Francisco

2. Statler Dallas

This 19-story building is a modern American hotel that encompasses timeless culture and history. Located in Dallas, Texas, it was opened in 1956 and was known as the pioneer in the hospitality industry where music legends like Frank Sinatra, Tony Bennett and Michael Jackson performed. It was also famous for being among the first hotels in the country to have elevator music. However, the hotel closed in 2001 when the population in downtown Dallas declined. In 2018, it was reopened and what better way to grace the reopening of the hotel than Tony Bennett singing his chart-topping hits to an eager and affluent audience.

Read our Storied Hotels Feature piece about The Fairmont San Francisco

3. The Concord Hotel

The Concord Resort Hotel was a resort-hotel located in Kiamesha Lake, New York. It used to be part of a string of resorts known as the Borscht Belt between the 60’s and 70’s. It featured lavish decors and primarily catered to Jewish vacationers of New York. Tony Bennett, along with other stars such as Barbara Streisand and Judy Garland, performed in this hotel during its peak. However, it filed for bankruptcy in 1985 and was sold in a foreclosure auction for $10.25-million and closed in 1998.

4. The Cosmopolitan

The hotel is rated as “The Best Hotel in the World” by Gogobot in 2013 and was included in Conde Nast Traveller’s Top Hotels in the World. The hotel featured two high-rise towers with many restaurants, shops, pools, spa, and a casino. Located in Las Vegas, the Cosmopolitan Hotel is where Tony Bennett played a special show, together with Lady Gaga, to ring in the New Year of 2015. The interesting duo announced their collaboration on The Today Show titled “Cheek to Cheek.”

5. The Waldorf-Astoria

Tony Bennett always has a soft spot for the Waldorf-Astoria hotel. Located in New York, the hotel first opened its doors in 1893 and has many iconic people from all over the world as its guests including former President of the United States Barak Obama, Elton John, and many others. Tony Bennett also performed in the Grand Ballroom regularly. His latest performance in this hotel was in 2007 during the 10th anniversary gala for the North Shore-LIJ Health System. He also lived in the hotel and usually stayed at the Cole Porter Suite.

6. Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa

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The Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa is located in Atlantic City in New Jersey and is one of the strings of hotels owned by MGM Resorts International. It opened in 2003 and features 2,002 rooms thus making it the largest hotel in New Jersey. Tony Bennett has made several performances in this hotel together with other artists particularly Lady Gaga.

 

7. The Savoy, London

Before Tony Bennett started singing, he was a painter first. He noted that while he was on tours, he would paint in his hotel rooms and would be inspired by scenes he would watch from his hotel window. One of the hotels associated with his love for painting was the Savoy Hotel. Located in the city of Westminster in London, Savoy Hotel is where Tony Bennett presented Louis Armstrong his portrait in oil painting in 1970. The hotel has a long-standing history and earliest records show that it first started accepting guests in 1889. The hotel is famous for its lavish rooms and was the first luxury hotel in Britain that introduced electric lights plus hot and cold running water.

 

8. The Sands In Las Vegas (closed)

The Sands in Las Vegas is a special place for Tony Bennett. He performed in the Copa Room–the entertainment nightclub of Sands Hotel. However, the nightclub was demolished in 1996. Tony Bennett performed in the nightclub together with other notable performances such as Ella Fitzgerald, Count Basie, Nat King Cole, and Bobby Darin to name a few. Tony sang his popular songs including I Left My Heart in San Francisco and I Got You Under My Skin. The Sands hotel was launched in 1952 by a Texan oil tycoon Jake Freedman. Located in the Strip, the hotel is now defunct and no longer in use.

9. The Sahara Hotel and Casino (Now SLS Hotel & Casino)

The Sahara Hotel and Casino was located on the Las Vegas Strip and was built in 1952. Closed down in 2011, it was reopened in 2014 under new management. Today, it is called the SLS Hotel & Casino Las Vegas. The Sahara Hotel and Casino is where Tony Bennett performed in 1964 at the hotel’s Congo Room. What makes the show interesting was that it was recorded yet the fans did not see the recorded version until 2011 when it was released Live at The Sahara: Las Vegas (1964) where it got a stand-alone release and was still patronized by many of his fans.

 

10. The Sheraton Hotel, Times Square, New York

The Sheraton Hotel in New York is where Tony Bennett was honored into the Friars Club on his 90th birthday and joined the exclusive group of talents from Frank Sinatra to Tom Cruise. The Sheraton Hotel is situated in Times Square, New York City. It is part of the international hotel chain owned by the Marriott International Sheraton that operates 500 hotels worldwide. A 51-story hotel first opened in 1962 to sever the huge influx of tourist during the 1964 New York World’s Fair. Nowadays, it’s one of the most popular hotels in New York frequented by guests from all over the world.

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