One of the perks of having a doctor for a best friend is
free medical advice. One of the perks of being a doctor and having a best
friend that's an interior designer is a lifetime of design help...
As a designer, I believe that people should be paid for
their talents. But like most of you, there are a select few people in my life that I
would never consider charging for my assistance. My best friend, Eleni, is one of those people.
So when the time came for her to move from Boston to Manhattan for her oncology
fellowship, I gladly offered to help her find and set up her new home. In these
Design Diary posts, I'll share
details about the process.
Not surprisingly, finding an apartment in NYC was
challenging. The hospital requires that
Eleni live in close proximity for at least the first year of her fellowship, so
we were limited to the Upper East Side in our apartment hunting. This was both a blessing and a curse. On the
one hand, it limited the neighborhoods we could consider and helped focused our
search. On the other hand, it meant
pursing less expensive fringe areas weren't an option. Time was also a constraint, as Eleni was deep
in the middle of a rotation filled with 30 hour shifts in Boston at the time
that the apartment search needed to take place. Like it or not, a broker seemed
our best option.
Two days after speaking to a friend-recommended broker,
Eleni received a call about a not yet listed apartment that met most of her
criteria. The catch? It needed to be seen and decided upon the next day. Due to
short notice, we enlisted the help of another friend, to view it on her
behalf. It was a one bedroom apartment
in a walk-up building, on the third floor.
The rent was high, but low by NYC standards. The location was great, and
it was one block from the subway.
Our friend went to see the apartment, and on a lark, the
agent showed her another one, in the same building but on the fifth floor. She reported back — the fifth floor apartment had an almost identical layout,
but the third floor apartment was best. Eleni submitted her application. Almost
immediately she heard back that someone already living in the building had also
submitted an application for the apartment, and they would most likely get it.
Was she interested in the fifth floor apartment, they asked? (First reaction? No,
it's a fifth floor walk-up!) Long story short — pros and cons were weighed, bank
accounts were emptied, and Eleni is now renting a fifth floor walk-up apartment
on the Upper East Side that she's personally never seen.
Next week, she'll get keys and we'll have the chance to see
the apartment for the first time. We'll take
pictures and measurements, and I'll get down to the nitty-gritty details of
(Image: Flickr user JasonParis, licensed via Creative Commons)