In Manhattan, buildings designed by Robert A.M. Stern Architects command a premium. The firm’s architecture generally tend toward the sedate prewar style, conveying timeless elegance and affluence. Classic New York building features such as hand-set limestone, patterned brick, and ornamental metalwork characterize Stern’s buildings, with all manner of fluting, cornices, pilasters and entablatures as seen in the stately buildings of old.
One of the company’s latest projects, an impressively detailed 15-story structure clad in Indiana limestone on East 78th Street, is almost sold out. However, one of the remaining residences, a dignified, light-filled duplex penthouse, recently decorated by Robert Couturier, is available asking $16.95 million via Alexa Lambert at Compass. Common charges and taxes are projected at about $10,500 a month.
With five bedrooms and five baths in a floor plan that spans 3,816 square feet, the condo has plenty of room for the whole family plus guests. As with the luxurious exterior of the building, the interior details recall the great prewar apartment houses, including tall ceilings, detailed crown molding, and chevron wood flooring. The huge arched windows and Juliet balconies are what really set this aerie apart.
Public spaces are on the lower floor. Upon exiting the elevator, there is a double-height entrance gallery and staircase. At almost 18-feet wide and more than 26-feet long, the great room is spacious, with ample space for numerous sitting arrangements. A carved marble fireplace anchors one end of the room, while a terrace runs along the full width of the room. Abloom with hydrangea, with long view down Lexington Avenue, the terrace is also accessible from a discrete library or guest room.
A pocket door between the corner dining room and the kitchen allows for both relaxed meals and formal entertaining. In the kitchen, a Lacanche gas range, a Miele wall oven, plus a speed oven and a warming drawer, as well as Sub-Zero refrigeration and wine storage blend seamlessly with the custom cabinetry by Christopher Peacock. Custom knobs and pulls designed by Robert Couturier complement the Statuarietto stone counter, backsplash and island.
On the upper floor, the primary suite is on a corner for complete privacy. There are two large closets and a bathroom clad in honed Bianco Crisium and Bardiglio Nuvoletto stone, with a soaking tub, heated floors, and steam shower. A convenient snack kitchenette — no more midnight runs to the kitchen! — as well as a large laundry room are located by the other bedrooms, all of which have arched windows, en-suite baths and generous closet space.
Amenities are many: regulation squash court; regulation height basketball hoop; golf simulator; gym with Technogym equipment; private training/yoga room; children’s art and activity room; entertaining parlor with full height arched windows, a billiard table and catering kitchen. Capping it off is a a common rooftop terrace with amazing city views, limestone archways, an outdoor kitchen/grill, and a gas fire pit.