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The Rainbow Room, designed by Marcel Hennequet, was acclaimed an art deco classic immediately it was opened in 1933, and has warranted comparison with the Chrysler Building and Radio City Music Hall.
Biba’s task was not to change but to restore the room. The most expensive item in the building contract, it required the addition of new facilities (including a modern kitchen), and the removal of all later elements, to recreate one of the splendours of 1930s London. And at the end, the critics sighed with relief that it had been ‘preserved intact’. ‘Perhaps,’ reflected the thankless designers, ‘they all “remember” it as it should have been.’