There's crystal. And there's lots of it. Luxury French crystal brand Baccarat opened the doors to its global flagship property in New York recently, the first of several new Baccarat-branded hotels slated to open around the world in the coming years. Located opposite the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA), steps from Fifth Avenue, the Baccarat Hotel & Residences asserts its presence on the streets of Manhattan with a 38-metre wide facade made to resemble corrugated crystal curtains. The opening of the Baccarat hotel marks a new chapter for the 250-year-old crystal company, which is now pitching itself as a lifestyle brand - of the decidedly French kind. Built into the telephone handset, for example, is a button marked "Champagne" that will send up a vintage bottle of bubbly for parched guests with luxury palates. Likewise, the minibar is filled with gourmet French treats from Fauchon, and the marble counters in luxury suites are lined with complimentary La Mer skincare products. The Baccarat hotel also features the first Spa de La Mer in the US. A total of 17 cascading chandeliers provide light, drama and opulence to the Parisian-inspired hotel particulier and offset a muted colour palette of taupes and greys - the colours of wealth. Guests are greeted with a spectacular light show upon entry, with a six-metre by seven-metre wall composed of 2,000 Baccarat glasses that are backlit by LED lights. Throughout the hotel - which has 114 rooms and suites and 60 private residences - a collection of art from the company's own archives lines the walls and fills the rooms. In addition to custom-made furnishings produced by French artists, design details include hand-pleated silk wall coverings, sparkling mica-covered vaulted ceilings, silver-leafed wood panelling, and marble walls and tables. The hotel is also hoping to make New York hotspots of its French restaurant Chevalier, overseen by Michelin-star chef Shea Gallante, and The Bar at Baccarat, with its bar and outdoor terrace overlooking the MoMA. Next year, Baccarat plans to open a second property in Rabat, Morocco, followed by hotels in Dubai and Doha.