Downton Abbey is filmed at Highclere Castle in the U.K. — did you know the estate that it sits on is larger than Central Park? I love the house, and wrote an entire article for Time.com about it. Six Fun Facts About Downton Abbey’s Highclere Castle.
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In 1985, Tom Wolfe wrote an Esquire article where he talked about 42 New York buildings as “Good Buildings.” For your curiosity, the list is below.
Now since I was too lazy to go back and find the original article, this list is via Stephen Gaines’ The Sky’s the Limit: Passion and Property in Manhattan. If you are reading this post you’ve probably already read this book, but if not, buy it here now.
Of course, the question arises “in a downturn, what holds its value?” In the early ’90s, for example, the Gold Coast of Greenwich Village held up well, but currently it feels like celebrities would rather like in 15 Central Park West than down there. So we’ll have to see; the future will come to us.
But do bear in mind that some of New York’s best (or at least most hyperexpensive) buildings are not on this list — and some of those that were at the time aren’t. No Dakota, no Forty Fifth Avenue.
1 Beekman Place
10 Gracie Square
1 East End Avenue
550 Park Avenue
810 Fifth Avenue
River House — 435 East 52nd Street
4 East 66th Street
131-5 East 66th
2 East 70th Street
4 East 72nd Street
19 East 72nd
36 East 72nd
117 East 72nd
160 East 72nd
50 East 77th Street
21 East 79th Street
39 East 79th
66 East 79th
79 East 79th
25 Sutton Place North
One Sutton Place South
Posted 4 years, 7 months ago at 11:58 am. Add a comment
From a story Lauren Elkies did for The Real Deal. The magazine’s June 2008 issue showcases HJ Development’s 211 East 51st Street, #4D, a 505-square foot condo, and the devleoper was nice enough to price items, which don’t include labor:
Vanity (Polished chrome with a 3/4-inch Bianco Dolomiti marble slab, and custom-made wall-hung medicine cabinet): $4,000
Shower door (Frameless glass with polished chrome towel bar): $3,000
Wall tile, accent (Fireclay 3 by 5s, gray): $2,000
Wall tile, shower (White crackle ceramic tile): $1,600
Floor tile (Marble mosaic tile, Bianco Dolomiti): $1,300
Shower curb (Bianco Dolomiti marble slab, looks about 5″ high): $450
Showerhead (Kohler rain in polished chrome): $400
Sink (Kohler Kathryn undercounter): $350
Toilet (Toto): $330
Sink faucet and handles (Kohler stillness in polished chrome): $280
Robe hook (Vola in polished chrome): $200
Toilet paper holder (Vola in polished chrome): $175
Posted 4 years, 11 months ago at 12:49 pm. Add a comment
A view of a young Giants fan near the corner of Broadway and Barclay — where the Financial District starts to blend into Tribeca.
The white stuff on the ground is confetti, not snow.
Posted 5 years, 3 months ago at 7:19 pm. Add a comment
Since the New York Post has already released the address, there’s not much harm in describing the inside of 421 Broome — a keyed elevator opens into a 4,400-square-foot loft with 2.5 baths and a big open kitchen.
Loft rentals — my second deal at DG Neary was a five-figure Tribeca rental so I know whereof I speak — are generally priced off ceiling height, kitchens, windows and location.
If anything this loft was a little skimpy on outdoor space. But what made the apartment spectacular was its location — one of the best in New York — and its authentic detailing. Not only was there exposed brick, there were also the original cast-iron Corinthian columns from the original 19th-century building.
It was a shame that this star, who moved so many of us on screen, didn’t get longer to enjoy it.
Posted 5 years, 3 months ago at 7:26 pm. Add a comment
Open House New York is a weekend of architecture-related events and tours throughout the five boroughs.
Five years ago, the first OHNY drew 45,000 people. This year’s weekend is scheduled for October 5-7.
for a schedule of the events, go to Open House New York
Posted 5 years, 7 months ago at 4:02 pm. Add a comment
A $3 Million “real house” just went on sale in Second Life. How can I use the info to learn to stage my real house?
It’s a Coldwell Banker publicity stunt, but a good one — they’re marketing a $3MM home in the virtual world of Second Life.
Ok, hah, hah. But actually, this is a very cool thing for home sellers. By noting how one of the country’s top real estate agencies changes the way a house looks, we can learn all sorts of great tips about staging.
You can go to this ABC news link to take a look at both sets of pictures.
Notable changes between the “real” home and the virtual representation include:
* a stricter sense of entry (in reality, the entryway has an open space between two columns, while on SL there’s a solid wall).
* less landscaping — in SL the front shrubbery is much shorter, in order to show off the house; one shrub has been moved to the edge of the home, and one tree has been eliminated entirely. If you are selling your real home, consider pruning back trees that obscure the house’s features, especially the front windows. Also, even if you don’t want to spend a lot of money right before you sell your home, realize that every $1 you spend on landscaping will net you $3 back when you sell.
* there is a fire in the fireplace in the SL house. This makes the home seem warm and inviting. If you’re selling your home in the winter, you might want to light a Duraflame log to create the same effect. If you’re selling your home in the summer, use a mass of candleholders and candles of different heights to give that same sense of potential light, even if they’re not aflame.
* in the SL house, the fireplace surround and the columns are a darker grey. You could do this in RL using paint colors to create a greater sense of depth and drama in the room. Note that the current trend is not to use crazy contrast-y colors, such as red accents in a white room, but to use slightly darker tints in one neutral family. I love grays, but I should note that in New York City on the high-end, different shades of cream and beige are much more popular.
Picture 3 is the Realtor avatar, which I’ll comment on in a minute.
Pictures 4 and 5 are the kitchen. First, let’s just note that it’s important that the kitchen takes up two whole photos in the ABC News Story. It’s proof of the Realtor maxim, “Kitchens sell houses” — when you’re staging, if you can concentrate on only two things, the exterior and the kitchen are the places to start.
Second, notice how warm the cabinetry in the SL house is. First, the cabinetry in the real house is inexplicably three colors — pine, white, and some sort of dark mahogany. In SL, that’s been streamlined into one color, a cherry, which balances out the shiny cool of the stainless steel refrigerator. Finally, the countertop in the SL house is quite prominent, one giant slab of grey stone.
You might not want to spend $100K renovating your kitchen — and yes, it could cost that — but you can get a real bang for your buck by updating your countertop. The best approximation of what’s in the SL pictures is a grey quartz composite or, on the high end, a pietra del Cardoso stone.
Pictures 6 and 7:
This is every Realtor’s dream — an ability to focus on an open door, inviting the buyer in. Obviously, you can’t change the buyer’s focus in real life, but if you are taking photos of your house for a listing you might want to try a shot lot like this just as you’re walking in.Also, do you notice how much brighter the SL pictures are than the Realtor’s photos of the home? It’s an argument for sellers getting a professional photographer, who will use expensive lights when he or she does the shoot; also, as you get your home ready to sell, think about places where spending a few hundred dollars to put in a light fixture can really brighten a room.
For more tips on selling your house — and some wacky stories of my first year in real estate, check out my new book, “Diary of a Real Estate Rookie”– the pick of the week from Newsweek earlier this summer!
author, Diary of a Real Estate Rookie
Posted 5 years, 9 months ago at 6:27 am. Add a comment
click here for the New York Times story about the eight-person long waiting list for the five $225,000 parking spots at 246 West 17th.
As the story points out (though somewhat obliquely) much of what’s behind Manhattan’s high parking space prices is speculation — buyers often plan to rent them out or re-sell them.
Posted 5 years, 10 months ago at 5:49 pm. Add a comment
Heavy on Italian wines, but you can get Veuve Cliquot.
220 Front Street, between Beekman St. and Peck Slip.
Posted 5 years, 11 months ago at 2:36 pm. Add a comment
It is 100% human nature to want to see how our neighbors live. You can get decorating ideas (maybe they thought up something cool to do with that little ledge in the kitchen); see how potential buyers react to the idea of being in your area (in case you’re thinking of selling someday) and also just rock your nosiness a little.
It is also expected behavior for an open house. Chances are that the realtor is probably excited to see you, because you are a potential customer for her down the road — and she can point potential buyers to you and get you to say nice things about the building or the neighborhood.
So go ahead, don’t be nervous. Chances are, your neighbors won’t even be there. If they are, it’s fine to use the line “I love it here so much, I thought maybe I’d recommend your place to a friend who is thinking of moving to the area!”