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Open House Agenda: Three Apartments to See This Weekend

By Donna M. Airoldi | February 21, 2014 7:36am
 Open houses for apartments with New York City lore.
Apartments in Historic Buildings
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NEW YORK — As new developments continue to change New York City’s skyline, sometimes it’s nice to reflect on the buildings and architects that are a part of a neighborhood's historic foundation. Here are three such apartments.

170 John St., Apt. 2B, Financial District, Manhattan
1 Bedroom/1 Bath
643 square feet
Common Charges: $587 per month
Real Estate Taxes: $432 per month
Open House: Sunday, Feb. 23, noon to 2 p.m

Lowdown: This 1840 building on John Street just off the East River was originally the Hickson W. Field Store, then became a ship chandlery (retailer) known as the Baker, Carver & Morrell building. It is one of the last surviving examples of granite Greek Revival buildings in New York and in 1971 was added to the National Register of Historic Places.

The sellers renovated the unit about three years ago with a new kitchen and bathroom, refinished flooring and an ethanol gas fireplace.

"The husband is a contractor, and he personally completed the work,” said Julia Spillman of Douglas Elliman. “No corners were cut.”

The unit also comes with a 40-square-foot storage space "across the hall from the entrance” to the apartment, Spillman said. “It’s like a giant walk-in closet.”

Though on the second floor, 2B — which has northern and eastern exposures — is “flooded with light in the morning.” It overlooks a park where one of the slips used to be and has a view of the Brooklyn Bridge.

Location: The building is across from the South Street Seaport (soon to get a makeover), Pier 15 and the East River Waterfront Esplanade. Though hit by Hurricane Sandy, the area is “more lively than ever,” Spillman said, with new restaurants and hotels opening regularly. (Although a favorite bar, Meade's, closes Sunday.) There’s a 24-hour Duane Reade nearby, and John Street has three groceries, she added.

There’s easy access to the FDR Drive. Many trains stop nearby at Fulton Street, and the East River ferry stops at Pier 11/Wall Street.

Why put it on your open house calendar? The unit is in excellent condition, gets great light and has reasonable monthly charges, Spillman said.

60 Broadway, Apt. 6N, Williamsburg, Brooklyn
1 Bedroom/1.5 Baths
1,023 square feet
$1.15 million
Common Charges: $793
Real Estate Taxes: $1
Open House: Sunday, Feb. 23, noon to 2 p.m.

Lowdown: Own a piece of original hipster Williamsburg — dating back about 75 years before contemporary artists or musicians moved to the area. This one-bedroom loft is in the Gretsch Building, home of the Gretsch Musical Instruments factory, where the acclaimed drums and guitars were manufactured from 1916 to the early 1970s.

The building underwent a luxury loft conversion in 2005, and this unit is one of its few one-bedrooms.

“What makes this particular unit unique is it’s a corner unit, which is always desirable, and it has very large windows with south-facing views of downtown Brooklyn,” said Jermain Miller of Douglas Elliman.

The current owner bought the apartment from the sponsor and did not renovate. There is a $658 monthly assessment in place for façade work through February 2015, but taxes are abated until 2020 at the full-service building.

Location: The famed Peter Lugar Steak House is a stalwart restaurant in the neighborhood, but new venues are opening up regularly, such as the nearby Daily Press Coffee shop and the upscale Key Foods urban market. After much debate, the former Domino Sugar plant is now being converted, which will add even more new developments to the area.

There’s easy access to the BQE and the LIE; the nearest trains are the J, M and Z at Marcy Avenue.

Why put it on your open house calendar? “Overall, the unit has been kept in really great condition, considering we’re looking at a 9-year-old apartment,” Miller said. “And the building is really popular. Anyone looking to purchase now or in the foreseeable future can trust their investment in this building.”

40 W. 67th St., Apt. 8C, Lincoln Square, Manhattan
2 Bedrooms/2.5 Baths
Approximately 1,200 square feet
$1.695 million
Maintenance: $2,309 per month
Open House: Sunday, Feb. 23, noon to 1:30 p.m.

Lowdown: This beautifully maintained apartment is part of the West 67th Street Artists’ Colony Historic District, a group of eight buildings added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1985. Rosario Candela, a “starchitect” of the early 20th century renowned for his Park Avenue structures, designed the building in 1928.

“This isn’t a cookie-cutter apartment. There are really wonderful details, such as the stained glass window behind the couch,” said Carol Halterbeck of Halstead Property. “It’s huge and adds a beautiful ambiance to the apartment. There also are stained glass windows in each of the bathrooms, which is a unique feature.”

The current owners renovated the kitchen and master bathroom about two years ago, Halterbeck said, adding that the stained glass in the kitchen is not original to the building, but it is antique. The unit also contains a “beautiful tiled windowed seat” behind the couch, that isn’t readily apparent in the photos.

Another plus: The owners recently added split central air to the master bedroom and living room, which is hard to do in pre-war buildings, Halterbeck noted, adding that the quiet units keep the entire apartment cool.

Even though the part-time doorman doesn’t start until 4 p.m., there are staff members on duty seven days a week to take packages and deliveries, starting at 7 a.m.

Location: This tree-lined block between Columbus Avenue and Central Park West is steps to Central Park, Lincoln Center, Columbus Circle and offers all one could possibly need in terms of bars, restaurants and shops. There are uptown, downtown and crosstown buses within one block. The 1 train is at 65th Street and Broadway, and the 2 and 3 express trains are at 72nd Street.

Why put it on your open house calendar? “This is one of the most desirable blocks on the Upper West Side, as far as historic [buildings] are concerned,” Halterbeck said. The reason it’s been on the market for a while is because a couple deals “went south.”