#TBT: The Flatiron Building's Timeless Charm
You may have heard about a new app that allows New Yorkers to wax nostalgic over historic photos of the spot they’re standing on. Deja Vu offers a collection of geolocated vintage photos that enable the user to stand on a street corner and view a photo of the same place from up to 100 years ago. One such historical “then and now” landmarks is one of our favorite pieces of NYC architecture, and this #TBT star, the Flatiron Building.
When the Flatiron Building was built in 1902, it was one of the tallest, and certainly the most unique, in the area. Its distinctive shape was designed by Daniel Burnham, an important member of the Chicago School of Architecture, to fit into the wedge-shaped intersection of Broadway and Fifth Avenue. The etymology of its name is often attributed to its resemblance to the household appliance of the same name, but in fact, the triangular shaped area flanked by Fifth Avenue, Broadway, 22nd, and 23rd Streets was already known at the “Flat Iron”. The property was purchased in 1901 by mining moguls Samuel and Mott Newhouse, who were part of an effort to start another Financial District north of Wall Street. The Flatiron Building was commissioned to serve as the New York offices for the big name Chicago contracting firm George A. Fuller Company.
Though the Fuller Company left the building in 1929 and the area surrounding it became increasingly desolate, this iconic piece of Beaux-Arts style architecture withstood the test of time. Indeed, its stately, photogenic beauty and enduring popularity with photographers, artists, and tourists alike helped spearhead the restoration of the neighborhood and its surrounding areas into a mecca of high end restaurants (think The NoMad Hotel), shopping, and some very luxe living.
This cast-iron loft building has a keyed, locked private elevator that opens to Penthouse 6B’s original tin ceilings, exposed brick, beamed ceilings, and Corinthian columns. Oversized southern exposed windows feature original metal shutters, while the gut renovated space features every modern amenity. Central A/C is controlled by Nest, Bowers & Wilkins speakers are fully integrated, and there is custom recessed lighting throughout.
A chef’s kitchen by Boffi boasts a stainless steel appliance package featuring Bosch, Sub Zero, Gaggenau, and Miele, while the Boffi custom en-suite master bath has Pietra Serena tiling and a skylight, offering a spa-like urban oasis. The master bedroom also features custom built-in closets. The second bedroom can easily segue into a home office. A lush, landscaped semi-private rooftop garden offers cityscape views and a secluded oasis, with zen-inspired paving rocks, Garapa deck, and custom designed alfresco cinema.
Nomad is still very much the neighborhood to call home, and 88 Lexington Avenue is very much the address to choose. Built in 1927, this beautiful pre-war building is close to both Madison Square Park and Gramercy Park. The fully staffed, doorman elevator building has such amenities as laundry on every floor, a health club, and on site parking.
Apartment 801 is a dramatic 1-bedroom, 1-bathroom residence with 10 foot ceilings and oversized windows offering open Eastern exposure views. Fumed grey oak flooring and recessed overhead lighting runs throughout. The kitchen features custom European oak cabinetry, polished slab countertops, and Sub-Zero appliances, including a dual zone wine cooler. Fixtures are Dornbracht. The master bedroom has a customized walk-in closet and the five-fixture master bathroom features French limestone flooring and wall tiles, NuHeat radiant heated floors, travertine slab backsplash, and WetStyle Cube Collection soaking tub. Hansgrohe fixtures are designed by Philippe Starck.