The lobby was signature Starck. Huge flowing swaths of fabric
encircling the salespeople; more fabric, extending 30 feet from the
ceiling for the curtains; a giant silver frame from which the talking
head of Philippe was projected in video. Behind the curtains, however,
was an office building in various stages of disrepair. We were escorted
to a room where we were served exotic cocktails. Eventually we were
taken up to the 19th floor to view 4 model apartments....
For $1.9 Million, I expected more. But maybe that is just me. Maybe
researching bathroom tile and hunting down the best toilets for the
better part of a year has made me jaded, and made me see the building
as already dated in some way. Maybe it was just too design cheez.
Personally, if I was paying $1.9 million for an apartment, I would
expect something other than your basic 4'x4" white ceramic tiles on the
bathroom wall. The kitchens were cute however, and the spaces were huge
and lots of people were oohing and aahing. There was a lot of buzz
about how the interiors of the closets were painted fun, bright colors.
Everything is white, so when you open the closet door, it really causes
a stir. Some of the kitchen cabinetry was a bit overkill in that it was
drawers followed by a door. that is a lot to open when you are looking
for a spoon.
'people were very serious.' They were seriously considering the
purchase of the studio or a 2000 sqft one-bedroom, 2 work studies and 2
baths with an additional open bedroom that couldn't be called such
because it had no windows, or even the 3 bedroom (almost $4M). More
people than you would think showed up with an urge to buy and not just
to nibble on the tasty hors d'oeuvres.
One woman, who happened to be a broker, told me that a guy called her
from Venezuela to say that he wanted to buy an apartment in this
building and this building only. Such was his admiration for Mr.
This weekend's NYT real estate section mentioned that Mr. Boymelgreen
bought this former JP Morgan office building for $100M and hired Mr.
Starck to design all the interiors. Everyone in attendance seemed to
agree that it was the best deal in town, not because it was cheap or
even under-market, but that it was as solid an investment as one could
make. It was, after all, Philippe Starck.
It was all just a bit surreal, actually. JS