How Steinway thinks your living room should look

How Steinway thinks your living room should look


norman lebrecht

November 10, 2021

Advertisement from the piano maker:

This stylish living room features a Steinway as its centerpiece. “Design is like a piano. What you get out of it depends on how you create it.” — Rob Bowen of Rob Bowen Design Group



  • JB says:

    Foul! So much tartan! Typical Scottish decadence.

  • PS says:

    This is what the television sees.

  • M McAlpine says:

    How did they manage to get hold of that picture of my summer palace?

  • SlippedChat says:

    I don’t understand any objection to Steinway’s use of my living room for this photo. Isn’t this the way everyone’s living room looks?

    I am, however, slightly offended that the narrow angle of the photography excluded the pipe organ.

  • bet says:

    Yes, do park your piano in front of single-pane windows and baseboard heating, because wood, ivory and metal love nothing more than direct sunlight, drafty air warm and moist in the spring and cold and dry in the winter, against desiccating indoor heating.

    And make sure you open that window often to let the garden dust and pollen plenty of opportunity to get inside the mechanism.

    Looking at all that woolen tartan is enough to make me shiver with cold.

  • Bostin'Symph says:

    Every home should have a Steinway Model D. 😉

  • Micaelo Cassetti says:

    Did Owen lift that comment from Tom Lehrer?
    “Life is like a sewer; what you get out of it depends on what you put in to it.”
    It’s not too bad a pic.
    I’d change just two things… Firstly, I’d have a Bosendorfer, and secondly, it would be a wood finish, not black.
    What is it about pianists and shiny black Steinways? Lack of imagination springs to mind…

    • henry williams says:

      Black is popular. the pianist is dressed in black. the piano is black. the audience are dressed in black also wearing black masks.
      the person checking your ticket
      is in black.

  • J Barcelo says:

    In the US, it’s silly how often you see set ups like this in model homes. It’s supposed to make the potential homebuyer feel classy, upscale or superior. But playing the piano is probably at an all time low. People just want them as a showpiece.

    • Terence says:

      Don’t knock the piano-as-showpiece. It helps keep makers in business and indirectly benefits pianists.

      Yes, it would be even better if it were played … let’s hope it inspires a (grand)child.

    • Antonia says:

      Actually, many new people have taken up the piano during the pandemic…Staying at home, and all that. Piano stores which formerly were seeing significant and sadly plummeting sales pre-pandemic cannot keep pianos in stock, now.

      Here’s a “for instance” regarding piano sales in L.A.

      The NY Times also did a piece in 2020 with a title such as, “Concerts Are Gone, But Not Piano Sales”. I’d link it, but I don’t want to use up one of my free NY Times articles for the month.

  • Stuart says:

    It really tied the room together, didn’t it.

  • Plush says:

    I specify a 7 foot Hamburg Steinway for this living room.

  • Will Wilkin says:

    Carpeting? Somebody open a window, I’ll listen from outside.

  • Sue Sonata Form says:

    I was watching one of those home sales reality TV programs and the owners had a grand piano, lid open, on display. Andrew Winter asked, “who plays” and the owners were not in the least chagrined having to say “none of us; it looks good”.

    • Stephen Gould says:

      I recall an HGTV episode of many years ago where for an interior re-do, the designer crashed through the budget to put a baby grand in the living room, without consideration of whether the clients could play it.

  • E says:

    In real life, the house should
    have at least one black cat, to
    accompany hours of listening
    to the piano.

  • Sean says:

    Blocks a rather nice view really.

  • John G. says:

    Just in case that a fine Steinway piano wasn’t enough to “class up” the room, they were indeed astute to add an upscale chess set on the left.

  • Freewheeler says:

    An acoustic piano? How quaint and old-fashioned!
    Make mine digital.

  • Mystic Chord says:

    The ’boutique’ hotel look tartan overdose is simply nauseating. But then I’m sure Steinways are never bought by people with more money than taste …

  • Frank Flambeau says:

    The coffee table is too cluttered with things.