services 02.20.04


All prices are determined by the condition of the walls to be painted and how much trim (window panes that need taping, woodwork, door frames, etc.) there is in a room. Trim painting takes more time than wall painting and so the charge is upped. These prices are based on average or good conditions. Materials are extra in all cases.

Charles Roussin Interior Finishing, 718.596.1025
In business since: 1993
What they do: More than the basics: straight painting, but very strong with faux finishes in oil-based paints such as trompe l'oeil, woodgraining, and ragging.
Price range: by the day or by the job—$300 per day
Liability insurance: $1 million and a half, more if needed
Workman's comp: no
Clients' comments: "I would consider him to be an artist more than a house painter—he has an excellent eye for color and how colors flow from room to room. He is immaculate in his work—no drips or drops on the floor, no paint on the windows."

Dell Decorating (Fergel Byrne), 914.760.9098
In business since: 1991
What they do: Good for straight painting and wallpapering and some faux finishes.
Price range: by the job. A small one-bedroom apartment in good condition is $600-$700.
Liability insurance: yes, 2 million
Workman's comp: yes
Clients' comments: "The fellow (Fergel Byrne) who heads this team of Irish painters is a charming, conscientious man who I had complete confidence in. I knew he would do an extraordinary job and they did. Not a spot of paint except for where it's supposed to be."

Design Atelier (Randi Barr), 212.587.0691
In business since: 1993
What they do: Decorative painting from simple glazes to extravagant murals using environmentally green materials, specializing in textured materials such as Venetian plaster and stone-like applications. Also gilding and stenciling.
Price range: $5-$10 per square foot.
Liability insurance: no
Workman's comp: no
Clients' comments: "She is reasonably priced. But more important than price to me was the way Randi understood what I wanted when I didn't know myself exactly what I wanted…every evening when I came home from work, my kitchen was immaculately clean and ready for me to cook dinner."

Hernan's Painting Corporation (Hernan Cano), 646.932.6840
In business since: 1986
What they do: An all-purpose painting and wallpapering company. Skim coating, Venetian plaster, and stucco.
Price range: works by the job, figure $150 man day, per day.
Liability insurance: $2 million
Workman's comp: yes
Clients' comments: "The project presented challenges (walls in poor conditions needing skim-coating, 18-foot ceilings, other contractor delays, problems to work around), but Hernan met them all and delivered an excellent finished product."

Junior Morales, 347.731.3517 or 718.824.0670
In business since: 1965
What they do: When you need a little more than painting. Mr. Morales is a general contractor and does some carpentry and sheetrocking as well as paint preparation, plastering and general interior painting.
Price range: A 1-bedroom apartment starts at $1200.
Liability insurance: no
Workman's comp: no
Clients' comments: "He painted our apartment beautifully, installed a bunch of medicine cabinets, and also built us two sets of fine-looking bathroom shelves from scratch."

Peter Murphy, 646.242.3623,
In business since: 1996
What they do: Basic straightforward painting.
Price range: $50-$100 per hour.
Liability insurance: no
Workman's comp: no
Clients' comments: "His work is picture perfect and he does it with such ease, it's almost sickening (for those of us who labor and have the sore backs to prove it)."

Phil Kerrigan Painting, 917.705.6555
In business since: 1979
What they do: Straight painting and plastering.
Price range: by the job or by the day. $200-$300 per day.
Liability insurance: $1 million, more if necessary
Workman's comp: yes
Clients' comments: "A real, old-fashioned professional painter—knows exactly what he is doing and makes an art of a job well done."

Sheridan & Sugrue (Michael Sheridan and Cliff Sugrue), 718.796.2357,
In business since: 1998
What they do: Good fixer-uppers: high quality skim coating, plastering, painting, building bookcases and some carpentry.
Price range: $275 per man, per day.
Liability insurance: $3 million
Workman's comp: no
Clients' comments: "They are easy to work with, full of good solutions to problems, and careful and thorough in their work."

SKB Painting, 585.200.6781,
In business since: 1986
What they do: Color consultation to work with the available light, fabrics and flooring. Also does some faux finishes.
Price range: Works by the hour or by the job. Small rooms $75 to $150 per room.
Liability insurance: Will get insurance required by the job where needed.
Workman's comp: no
Client's comments: "He's quick, well-priced, and very talented. He has design skills so, for instance, he was able to guide my paint choices in my office and bedroom."

Smolin Painting (Ira Smolin), 212.831.0205,
In business since: 1979
What they do: Solid basics and more. Straight painting, paperhanging, and decorative finishes.
Price range: $500 per man, per day.
Liability insurance: $1 million
Workman's comp: yes
Clients' comments: "Easy to work with and really knows his stuff."

Teodoro Patino, 718.562.6231
In business since: 1986
What they do: Good, straightforward work: plastering, skim coating, drywall, and painting.
Price range: small 1-bedroom apartment, figure $600 plus materials.
Liability insurance: no
Workman's comp: no
Clients' comments: "He brings a bunch of guys and does a great job lickety-split."

3-D Clinic, 212.219.2120,
In business since: 1986
What they do: A division of a high-end construction company, 3-D does painting and small construction projects. High-quality work from experienced workmen. Price range: $95 per man per hour with a one-day minimum.
Has liability insurance: yes
Workman's comp: yes
Clients' comments: "I was totally thrilled with their work. They seriously opened my eyes. They have resources I couldn't believe and experience in everything."
What in tarnation is going on at the Mandarin?

February 19, 1:50pm. The lobby of the new Mandarin Oriental. Ordered: 1 Kobe beef burger, medium rare. The diner cuts the burger in half to reveal a well-done burger. It's sent back. After a few minutes, the very same burger returns (still cut in half), with a new bun and fresh fries. It's sent back with a request for a new burger. Eventually, a new burger arrives, but it, too, is well-done.
"Is that burger better?"
"Well, it's overcooked, too, but I'm hungry."
"I'm sorry," she says, and walks away.

It is a matter of some debate whether this is actual Kobe beef, anyway, since you'd have to put some effort into turning such fatty meat into something as dry as this burger. (The food comes from the same kitchen as Asiate but is prepared by a different cooking crew).

And service is a mess: Water glasses don't get refilled, plates don't get cleared. The floor is not freshly vacuumed. One corner of a chair's armrest is already ripped, with the stuffing coming out. Does the Mandarin think people won't notice any of this?

Oh, one more thing: When someone asks for mayonnaise, it's really not okay to bring a small jar of Hellman's to the table.

Room rates start at $499 and the burger is $24.

And this from a reader:
What's with the goons working security at the Mandarin Oriental? I've been there for after-work cocktails several times and had a pleasant, if ridiculously pricey, experience. Quiet, congenial, etc. But now they've got these thugs roaming the joint—big, huge guys with greased back hair that look like they should be working a hooker bar under the 59th St. Bridge and who have just the attitude to match.

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