Open House Agenda: Three Apartments to See This Weekend

By Amy Zimmer | November 7, 2014 7:45am
 A Clinton Hill "treehouse," an UWS garden duplex and a Cobble Hill "cottage" offer urban oases.
Open House Agenda: Three Apartments to See This Weekend
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NEW YORK CITY — As the days get shorter and weather gets cooler, it's nice to hibernate somewhere that feels like a special urban oasis. These three pre-war homes offer just that, each with kitchens large enough to cook a big Thanksgiving feast and private outdoor spaces ideal for your own herb garden.

135 Clinton Ave. #4, Clinton Hill
2 Bedroom/1 Bath
Approximately 850 square feet interior; 350 square feet outdoors
Maintenance: $1,056 per month
Open House: Sunday, Nov. 9, noon to 1:30 p.m.

Lowdown: This light-filled fourth-floor unit, spanning the top floor of a 25-foot-wide brownstone, feels like a "treehouse," with sweeping views of the Brooklyn Navy Yard and across the river to Manhattan, said Deborah Rieders of Corcoran.

Unlike most brownstones where a roof deck must be accessed by going up a flight of stairs — making dinner parties somewhat of a hassle — this unit's outdoor space has a door right off the kitchen. It makes indoor/outdoor living feel seamless, Rieders noted.

The custom-renovated kitchen was designed "by someone who cooks" and is big enough for several people to prep a meal together. It also has a pantry and washer/dryer. 

Though billed as a two-bedroom, the second bedroom is fairly small, making it more appropriate for a nursery or office. But the unit's airy feel, high ceilings and built-ins, including a wall of bookshelves and floor-to-ceiling closets in the master bedroom, give it an expansive feeling.

The four-unit co-op expects to decrease the maintenance in 2017 when it pays off the underlying mortgage, Rieders added.

Location: The building is just off of Myrtle Avenue, which is undergoing a renaissance with new restaurants and bars. like the forthcoming Brooklyn Eats, which will offer pingpong. It's also a few blocks to shops and eateries along Dekalb Avenue.

The G train at Clinton-Washington is the closest train, less than half a mile away. The C at Lafayette is a bit further. The Brooklyn-Queens Expressway is also nearby.

Why put in on your open house calendar? There aren't many pre-war apartments like it nearby. "The area either has entire brownstones for sale or new construction," Rieders said. "There's so little for under $1 million."

305 West 98th St. 2ESOUTH, Upper West Side
1 Bedroom/1 Bath
Approximately 1,000 square feet interior, 600 square feet outdoors
Maintenance: $1,457 per month
Open House: Sunday, Nov. 9, noon to 1:30 p.m. by appointment only

Lowdown: Tucked away into a stately Beaux Arts building, the living room, chef's kitchen and bedroom of this garden duplex all look out onto its large, multilevel terrace. 

It gives the graciously-sized one-bedroom a serene feeling, said Stribling's Charlotte van Doren.

"The amazing outdoor space [is] great for al fresco dining or hanging out after work with a glass of wine. It's ripe for someone with a creative vision to put in a wonderful garden," she said, noting that there's irrigation to add plants or perhaps turn the textured wall bordering the space into a "green wall."

Besides a large private outdoor space (which doesn't look into windows of other apartments) additional perks in the unit include a walk-in closet for the bedroom, which is on the lower floor. The ample kitchen has new stainless steel appliances, large workspaces for cooking and a breakfast bar.

The Schulyer Arms is an 84-unit full-service co-op. Maintenance is on the high side, but the building allows 80 percent financing and gifting, which makes the home ideal for first-time buyers, van Doren said.

Location: The building is half a block from Riverside Park and close to the restaurants and shops lining Broadway, including the future home of a Soul Cycle outpost. It's a short walk to the 1/2/3 trains at 96th Street.

Why put in on your open house calendar? "It's generously sized, beautifully designed and [people] love that it has this wonderful oasis of outdoor space," according to van Doren, who noted that there is nothing else on the market quite like it in the neighborhood.

To schedule an appointment for Sunday, call Charlotte van Doren at 917-603-9489.

8 Warren Pl., Cobble Hill
2 Bedroom/1.5 Bath
Approximately 1,104 square feet interior; 175 square foot garden
Annual Taxes: $2,500
Open House: Sunday, Nov. 9, 1-3 p.m.

Lowdown: This charmingly rustic three-story townhouse — chock full of exposed beams, refurbished woodwork and exposed brick — is one of 34 Romanesque Revival-style homes lining a common English-style courtyard known as the Warren Place Mews.

The homes, each with a private garden, were built in 1878 as "workingman cottages" by Alfred Tredway White, a housing reformer and philanthropist known as "the great heart and mastermind of Brooklyn's better self."

"He felt not only should you build affordable housing for the working class, the housing should be beautiful as well," Corcoran's Jim Winters said.

White charged $4.50 a week in rent when they first opened, Winters said, noting Census data that revealed that among its earliest inhabitants at the turn-of-the-century included a man who was an actor in the circus and theater, and his wife, an aerial gymnast.

The current price tag is may not be as friendly to the working class.

But, Winters said, "it is where the market is." And with "tremendous interest" in less than a week since he's listed it, Winters thinks it might even fetch more than the asking price.

Though White dubbed the homes cottages, Winters said it feels like a "small townhouse." The master bedroom is on the bottom floor with laundry. The top floor, which is now one big space used as an artist studio by the seller, is typically carved into two other bedrooms, he said.

In addition to an updated eat-in kitchen, there's a new boiler, water heater and roof, Winters added.

Location: When standing in the tranquil mews, you might not realize the BQE is a block away. Brooklyn Bridge Park and the new eateries of the Columbia Waterfront District are nearby. It's also relatively close to the bustling shops and restaurants on Court and Smith Streets. It's about a 7-minute walk to the F/G train at Bergen Street.

Why put it on your calendar? "When you walk through the gate into the mews, it's magical," Winters said. "It doesn't feel like you're in the city."