Franklin Report Report Card for Miguel Saco Fine Furniture & Restoration, Inc. in New York City
★ Franklin Report Card

Miguel Saco Fine Furniture & Restoration, Inc.

39-50 Crescent Street
Long Island City, NY 10021
(212) 254-2855
Main Contact: Rafael Rovira


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Services & Specialties
Superlative furniture restoration

FR Review:
Miguel Saco is the first name in museum quality furniture restoration–there’s him, and then there’s everyone else. A thirty plus-year veteran of the trade, he has seen styles come and go, but held on to a devoted A-list clientele (gallerists, curators, noted collectors, auction house managers) who all told us: “honestly, Miguel’s really the only one I trust.” Working out of a Flatiron workshop with nine craftsman, Saco handles a wide variety of pieces, ranging from the expected (midcentury modern, 19th century French) to the esoteric (on a recent studio visit, Saco was contemplating how best to treat a tattered Italian Futurist chair). Issues run the gamut–this is a firm that is as likely to be reattaching a leg as they are to be recreating an intricate eggshell mosaic. However, sources praise Saco equally for what he doesn’t do: they say he has an unerring instinct for knowing how much or how little a piece of furniture needs. In a field where improperly refinishing a piece can erase its value, this distinction is everything

Unsurprisingly for someone who “can see the soul of a piece of furniture,” Saco himself is a long-practicing artist. He studied in his native Spain and began producing sculpture, initially only taking restoration work on the side to pay the bills. Over time, the repair work grew and grew, becoming a full-time job in 1984. Saco’s process reflects his deliberative, thoughtful personality–the expert craftsmen in his shop go step by step, never rushing to finish a piece before knowing what comes next. However, the shop manages to meet tight deadlines if they arise–one prominent gallerist we spoke with mentioned a significant project that was turned around over a weekend. Occasionally Saco will put his considerable expertise to making new custom pieces, but the firm’s daily bread is restoration at the very highest level–their work can be seen everywhere from the White House to the Metropolitan Museum. It probably goes without saying that this isn’t the place to get that CB2 armoire fixed up, or even for a second-tier antique–the price of repair (charged around a top-of-market hourly cost) is likely to exceed the value of the piece. However, for a truly paragon example, sources say “Miguel is the first call.”
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