Located in Tribeca, a neighborhood Edith Wharton could never have fathomed—a truly downtown community with plentiful rehabbed, and CO-OPed, wrought iron industrial-turned-luxury-residential buildings, its citizens similarly bedecked in architectural Céline or Oliver People’s eyeglasses—and, of course, this building is nothing like the cream colored limestone, European-inspired townhouses she advocated for, nor the now much admired brownstones, with, what Wharton determined to be of “a universal chocolate-colored coating of the most hideous stone ever quarried,” this home would, hopefully, have garnered quite the reaction from her, and not a dreaded un-reaction: a concerted effort to never acknowledge its presence. And, yet, I will always acknowledge, nay celebrate, the existence and construction of this magnificent bluestone edifice.
I have never seen construction techniques such as these and am enthralled by them!
This building, 12 Warren Street, is the most magnificent of caves; it is a structure to make both Neanderthals and the omnipresent Joneses jealous. The façade of this structure has been quarried from Tompkins Bluestone Co., Inc., located at 325 Tar Hollow Road, Hancock, NY, in the Catskills. Here, the stones were meticulously counted, sorted, and positioned, before being numbered, packed, and shipped down to Manhattan to be reassembled to create the ravishing exterior of the building.
12 Warren Street, sleek as it is, with its downtown, ripped jeans and leather biker jacket appeal, is a very rough, elegant surface, similar to a Kiehl’s facial exfoliant—a new locus of where form and function intersect.
I would gladly enter this most glamourous of caves, especially to escape those unfriendly New York City winters. As a graduate student at Sarah Lawrence College from 2014-2016, I was frequently in the City for both academic and social reasons, including the Polar Vortex that occurred in 2015. Everywhere: white, gray, requiring long underwear, boots with thick tread. Every day I took a big vitamin D pill from Trader Joes, brought with me from California. The light, bright interiors melded with the rusticity of the exterior is an exciting juxtaposition I gladly embrace, and would call home. The building’s location, near outdoor, cultural, and numerous dining options, is bar none. I would readily venture out in a heavy coat and Chelsea boots, even on the harshest of days, if were listed as in residence at 12 Warren Street, an architectural beauty, always knowing I could call this cave home—especially if I lived a basement unit, with their tall, liminous white ceilings. They are a warmer white, especially when paired with tall fishtail palms, rubber plants, and parlour palms, by bringing an evergreen forest into my residence. A dash of summer, always.
The public spaces of the building not only employ the exterior’s impressive bluestone theme, yet also contrast it with crisp, clean lines and finishes. The building is composed of 13 individual condominium units, which all share these communal spaces, which are presided over by a 24 hour a day doorman.
Those windows! staircases! ceilings! kitchens! The sheer amount of space available, especially of a space so well designed, always sheathed in a bluestone evening gown, to the residents of 12 Warren Street is an immense privilege. And with that, I could imagine hanging a beautiful collection of art, specifically of Old Master paintings, with their full, rich, deeply hued scenes offset by magnificent gilt frames. I would consider hanging painting such as those below, which were recently at a Sotheby’s Old Masters Day Sale on July 5, 2018. Ms. Warton would certainly approve of this selection.
White walls have, historically, been the bane of my existence, and, yet, today, I can only sing their praises. White walls provide a welcome backdrop for furnishings, art, plants, and any form of décor alike. It highlights not only the architecture of the space, but each individual addition to the space, as well as the views or connections to the outdoors the room may provide. At 12 Warren Street, full floor residences are mixed in with duplex and triplex units, which all jigsaw together in a magical way, especially in regard to the multi-story units. It is in these units, of which both occupy half of the garden, or basement, level, that immense ceilings are afforded, complete with strikingly sophisticated stairways winding ever higher. Yet, the interior spaces of all the units are provided with plentiful light, open spaces, and welcoming floorplans that enable private, at-home entertaining, a true luxury in Manhattan Ms. Wharton would respect.
There are currently three residences, which start at $5,395,000, available at 12 Warren Street. Two of the spaces are the multi-story units inhabiting the garden level, and the third is a full-floor unit encompassing the sixth floor. The Penthouse unit, which has already been sold, has a prominent exterior garden which begins at the base of the exterior staircase of the unit, inviting its residents up to the secluded, and private, roof deck. This would be quite the cave to call home, wouldn’t it?
Architect: DDG Partners
For more information please visit: http://12warren.com/