Monday, February 6, 2012

Olympic Tower

The Olympic Tower is a 51 story building, situated in Midtown Manhattan, New York City, on Fifth Avenue. It is located next to St. Patrick's Cathedral

The planned use of the building was a ground breaking concept at that time (1976) because it was the first mixed use zoned for Fifth Avenue. It was constructed as a joint venture with Aristotle Onassis, and his company, Victor Development, in partnership with Arlen Realty and Development. 

Within the building one can find the Hellenic Museums Shop, the Onassis Culture Centre and the Alexander S. Onassis Public Benefit Foundation (USA), named after his son. 

The Parthenon Marbles Cast Collection of the City College of New York on loan to the Alexander S. Onassis Public Benefit Foundation is located in the entrance lobby. They are direct copies made from molds of the original marble sculptural decoration of the Parthenon. This collection was acquired in 1852, being one of the first sets of Parthenon marbles casts to come to the U.S. 

Although not complete, the casts served an important educational function in the C.C.N.Y. art department's studio and art history classes for more than one hundred years. The ones displayed within the Olympic Tower have been restored by the Alexander S. Onassis Public Benefit Foundation (USA). 

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