An inspiring renovation with superb structure and patrician facade, this 1848 Gramercy Park townhouse in New York City presented exciting challenges for the new generation of the Isaly family. Previous conversions had left one large triplex crowned by three loft-like residences. Their dream was simple but ambitious: the reconfiguration of the building into two dwellings, one atop the other, of equal value and scale. At the same time, the structure’s deteriorated condition meant investing in a whole new steel frame as well as replacement electrical, plumbing and HVAC systems.
Fractal Construction redeveloped the upper half of the building only, kicking off the project by adding a whole new top floor. Measuring 620 square feet, the additional story thus solved the issue of an equal division of space between the two dwellings. Thereafter, the design plans called for an open-plan, floor-through kitchen/dining/living space, a TV room, office, three bedrooms and three and half bathrooms.
The family imagined a showcase home that honored its soul while unashamedly bringing it into the new century. In their quest for daring, they turned for help also to ODA Architecture, lighting designer Ingo Maurer and sculptor Emilio Garcia. Everyone on the team harnessed their talents to the single vision of forging spectacular, multi-function spaces in a family home bathed from top to bottom in the sparkle of the sun in the summer and the softer rays of the New York winter.
The result is a Manhattan address that captivates like few others. The walls and ceilings of the living and kitchen area are punctuated with the sensuous sculptures and exploding light fixtures of Garcia and Maurer. The bricks-and-mortar rear wall of the two main floors has vanished, replaced by a glass curtain fitted with tiny diodes, invisible by day but glinting at night like a private constellation.
The outdoor terrace leading from the living room has a glass floor and overlooks the private gardens below. With every available patch of roof converted into usable space, the house boasts two more terraces as well as a roof deck.
This 19th Street loft is located on the top floor of a landmarked building in New York City’s Flatiron District. Designed by SHoP Architects, in conjunction with interior decorator Jaqueline Touby, the design maintains the open, expansive feel of a loft while accommodating a detailed program by relying on efficiently designed millwork, integrated technologies, and home automation systems. The centerpiece of the 4,000 square foot loft is a double-height glass-enclosed stair that leads to an extensive roof terrace/garden. The stair acts as a dramatic backdrop to the main living area, provides natural ventilation and augments natural light levels.
The loft was purchased in 2009 for $3.9 million and was renovated and furnished for an additional $2 million. The owners are Laurel Touby, a freelance writer who sold her online media company, Mediabistro for $23 million. Her husband, Jon Fine, is a musician and magazine writer. One of the most expensive purchases was a $30,000 hand-woven leather, chain-mail and fur indoor swing. Amongst other pricey fixings, the sprawling sectional sofa cost more than $30,000. The couple picked out art furnishings to decorate their posh pad, amid so much custom work there were some relative bargains, like $3,500 for a plastic and glass coffee table filled with cobalt-blue pigment and a toy taxi that was a copy of an Yves Klein piece. Via
This four story townhouse at 67 Charles has been designed by Turett Collaborative Architects, situated on a charming tree lined block in the heart of the original Greenwich Village Historic District in New York City. Originally constructed as one of a series of three rowhouses in 1867 by Bartlett Smith, the brownstone facade and painted wood cornice is a typical example of the French Second Empire style common to rowhouses built in that period. While the front facade has remained relatively unchanged throughout the building’s history, the 4,070 square foot interior has seen several renovations throughout the years which were less than kind to its historic bones.
Several historic details on the parlor level including base and crown mouldings, a ceiling medallion, and fireplace mantles throughout the house had managed to survive. These historic elements were very dear to the clients, yet they also recognized the value of contemporary space planning, details, and amenities. Their design directive to TCA was threefold: to preserve these historic elements; to create a dialogue between these preserved elements and a decidedly contemporary envelope; and to create a functioning layout complete with modern amenities that would serve the family into the future. In response, TCA created an architectural language to highlight the moments where old and new would interact.
Original base and crown mouldings appear to pass through glass entry vestibules at both the garden and parlor levels. Recessed metal reveals encircle the perimeter of preserved fireplace mantles demarcating old and new. A modern chandelier is juxtaposed against a restored ceiling medallion. Door jambs lined in non-directional stainless steel discreetly celebrate the use of contemporary reveals, without diminishing the texture and finesse that the owners so cherished in the preserved original mouldings. The new home demonstrates at every scale how the old and new can complement and enhance each other.
Photos: Courtesy of Turett Collaborative Architects
This classic loft tries to maintain its spatiality through the use of materials, brick, wood and steel in NoHo, an historic district in New York City. The 4,000 square foot (279 square meters) loft was designed by architecture studio JENDRETZKI LLC. Instead of conventional partitions from floor to ceiling, free standing volumes house the different environments creating a landscape of intriguing geography of materials, heights, light and shadows. Structural wood beams are lost through free volumes.
The master bedroom maximizes its open space floor plan, giving the sector of bathroom and shower their own volumetric identity. The same shower is between a wall of stone and the brick perimeter wall. Kitchen furnishings are designed in black steel and translucent plexiglass. The loft uses eco-friendly fireplaces of alcohol with and without ventilation. All carpentry work is in mahogany manufactured in Argentina by Guillermo Miraglia and exported to New York in parts for an easy assembly at work.
Photos: Alejandro Wirth
Design studio Dufner Heighes were commissioned with the task of turning back the clock on a New York City townhouse. The most recent developer gutted the building and left if feeling cold and stark, so the new owner wished to create a cozy home with modern details. The designers restored the original facade from 1899 and reinstated original architectural and design details. The 4,200 square foot multi-story townhouse opens by way of steps that lead up to the first floor entry level featuring a double parlor. The living room with its custom Koi wallpaper mural adds elegant warmth to the home. The rear parlor beyond is the TV room and study. The kitchen and dining room are on the garden level, offering views out to an outside garden and sitting area. The second floor houses the two children’s bedrooms. The master bedroom retreat is situated on the third level. The top floor was designed as a rooftop lounge with both interior and exterior living spaces.
Glassed-in lounge features a whirl ceramic wall installation by J Prichard Design and a Moroccan relief rug from Stark. A skylight offers additional light to penetrate into the cozy space.
The roof deck has its own fireplace and teak furniture.
The dining room is on the garden level.
The master bedroom on the third floor is a cocoon of soft pastel color with silk carpeting and a new stone fireplace.
The walls are covered in suede wallpaper.
On the second floor, one of the two sons’ rooms is designed with custom built-in furniture to retain as much floor space as possible. A round pivoting porthole with corkboard to connects the two boys rooms.
A painted teak bench and lots of plantings fill the small garden.
The TV room and study are painted in high-gloss gray lacquer. Custom steel bookshelves are cantilevered off the walls.
The fireplace surround was replaced from a modernist design to a classical marble.
The curtains have been hung from the ceiling to create the impression of height.
Through the front door of the home is a Lindsey Adelman pendant bubble light fixture with a stair runner from Tai Ping.
This fabulous Fifth Avenue studio spotted on NY Mag, was once a dentist’s office in a past life became the new apartment home for designer Suchi Reddy of Reddymade Design, in Greenwich Village, New York. The cramped 375 square foot space fit her budget, a mere $400,000! Purchasing the home three years ago with wacky plumbing, Reddy was seduced by the late afternoon sunlight through the windows and the high ceilings and the fantastic view of the Gothic church across the street. Designing Manhattan luxurious Manhattan apartments for clients, Reddy knew the home had great potential and great bones. Reddy took on an eighteen month renovation, completely gutting the place. To get an idea of the volume and how everything was going to fit in the space, Reddy designed a dollhouse-size model without partitions. She even designed a scaled down version of herself to make ensure she could freely move through the space without knocking into anything.
She began with recessing the walls inside the originals, creating bookcases, picture shelves and designing seven electronically controlled blinds to evoke a sense of depth. A total of fifty-one drawers and closets were tucked into the new walls and cooking area. The platform bed opens up on both sides to allow light to penetrate in from the bathroom window, to create an overall sense of illumination. The small scale model showed hard edges and surfaces, so to work around this, Reddy opted for soft white and gray quartzite atop the counter between the kitchen and living areas, linen was applied to the bedroom wall surfaces, walls were given a Venetian plaster finish for softness and illusion of space and the wooden closet doors were coasted with plaster to create a cushier texture. Utilizing a monochromatic color scheme of cream and white helped to open up the space even more. She relies on art to distract from the studio’s small size. Reddy lives in this space quite comfortably, even hosting dinner parties for six!
Reddy constructed a cloud light from packaging materials; it floats above her customized Spoon table, designed by Antonio Citterio and Toan Nguyen for Kartell.
When more space is needed, the table lifts toward the ceiling.
A curtain made from traditional Indian gold and linen, given to Reddy by her sister, rises electronically into the ceiling above.
When the curtain is lowered, it acts as a translucent room divider.
Photos: Douglas Friedman
This rare private garden oasis is nestled atop this duplex penthouse loft in the prime area of Chelsea, New York City, New York. Discovered on Sotheby’s, this top floor loft features soaring ceilings from 9 feet to up over 20 feet. There are multiple skylights and windows on three exposures, bringing in plenty of natural light and a unique drama throughout all areas of the loft. At the southern end of the spacious living/dining area is a square 400 square foot den. With windows on two sides and a full bathroom adjacent to this space, this room can easily be divided into two separate bedrooms. A grand staircase takes you up the master bedroom suite, which has its own bathroom and private south-facing terrace.
The rooftop garden is very spacious and beyond spectacular. The mature, fully-landscaped rooftop spreads over 1,600 square feet on multiple levels with fascinating architectural elements, making it the perfect space for intimate seating areas, sensory dining opportunities and infinite possibilities for entertaining, not to mention the amazing city views!
This is a rare, sensory retreat in the heart of the city, listed for sale at $4,495,000, from here.
David and Jane Cohen had finally moved into their perfect dream apartment filled distinctive architectural details, big beautiful windows and stunning views of the New York City skyline. The terrace of the penthouse, located in the Murray Hill neighborhood, is perfect for entertaining. Their temporary furnishings were too neutral and bland for the 2,000 square foot space, making the aesthetic of the penthouse appear as a big white box. They wished to have a bright and colorful home, so they hired designers Robert & Cortney Novogratz to fulfill the task.
The goal of the designer’s was to infuse the penthouse with a vibrant and timeless eclectic look. They mixed contemporary furnishings with vintage pieces and colorful surrealist works of art by artists such as Cristina Vergano and Richard Phillips. To make the new home really pop, they used metallics to reflect the New York City skyline and bold punches of color in the furnishings and artwork to make the space really extraordinary.
The master bedroom features a bed that is backed by the skyscrapers instead of using a traditional headboard. The bed was decorated with ethnic details such as linen and an ottoman in terracotta to contrast with the urban city backdrop. Even the bathroom shower features incredible urban city views. The illuminating chandeliers create a dramatic statement in the main living area are placed at varying heights from the 18 foot high ceilings and connect the two floors of the house. The dining room is comprised of a Philippe Starke inspired marble dining table and silver Louis-style chairs. The oval shape allows for additional seating and fits perfect in the space. The mint green 40s chairs, navy Deco chairs and Harry Bertoia chairs were discovered at Adelaide. Via
Visit the website of Robert & Courtney Novogratz who also have a show on HGTV, here.
Before and After
This classic metropolitan loft found on Sothebyâ€™s features a “wow factor” that only could be found in SoHo, one of the most incredible neighborhoods in Lower Manhattan, New York City, New York. This dramatic space is located in an architecturally significant, pre-war building, featuring restored original cast-iron columns, beautiful exposed brick arches, and abundant natural light through a wall of five enormous new oak-framed sash windows which offers fabulous city views, 14 foot high ceilings and hardwood floors. An open and spacious kitchen with a 6-burner Wolf stove, commercial-grade vented hood, stainless Miele dishwasher and new double-door refrigerator with bottom freezer. A movable granite island is fashioned from an antique cast-iron drafting table. With two bedrooms and two full bathrooms, this incredible loft has everything one could want and more.
This amazing loft space is listed for sale at $3,499,000 from here.
The Gramercy Duplex apartment renovation in New York City, New York combines two existing one bedroom duplex units into a one two bedroom duplex. Designed by Slade Architecture, the client who is a single mother with a young child wished to have a healthy and environmentally friendly renovation. On the lower level the architects created a living space that spanned the footprint of the two existing apartments along the exterior wall. On the interior of the apartment, the separation between the two units was maintained to create a kitchen and powder room on one side and a master bedroom suite on the other.
There is a deep wall of paneling for storage as one enters the duplex that allows the homeowner to contain their clutter, as well as built-in seating and a shoe storage drawer. The wall then becomes part of the kitchen to host appliances and additional kitchen storage all concealed behind the panels. At the end is a bench cut out of the deep wall with overhead storage that also contains an automated drop down LCD TV. The kitchen was designed to be part of the living space with a movable walnut and Richlite island to allow the owner to reconfigure the space for entertainment or quite family dinners. A new staircase extends from the kitchen cabinets to connect the two levels.
“The master bedroom is conceived as a single space containing bathroom and sleeping functions. The vanity floats in the middle of the space and doubles as the headboard and side tables for the bed. The toilet and bath/shower are built into the back wall of the space. A wall of closets separates this master bedroom from the kitchen. The bedroom has a glass partition that allows the user to sleep in privacy; most of the time the bedroom is open to the living room. Upstairs we created a bedroom for the daughter and a guest room which functions as a study/ playroom most of the time. All of the storage is located behind full height sliding glass partitions in the daughter’s bedroom. Full height glass partitions and sliding glass doors are used to divide all of the spaces on the upper floor while allowing for abundant natural light and a sense of openness.”
Visit the website of Slade Architecture here.