Liv Tyler Revived Her NYC Townhouse to Its Original Late-1800s Glory and We’re in Awe

updated Aug 29, 2019
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Credit: Max Burkhalter
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It took some time—and the assistance of a team of architects—but the vision that actress Liv Tyler had for her West Village townhouse has finally come to fruition.

When the “Lord of the Rings” star purchased the four-story residence on West 11th Street in NYC back in 2001, the brownstone was in a major state of disrepair. The home was constructed in the late 1800s and had changed ownership multiple times over the years, serving as a residence for various types, including “three spinster sisters” and a politician.

“When I found it, it was really, really, really run down. You really needed to have a vision to see what it would be—and I could just see it,” Tyler told Architectural Digest. But thanks to the ultimate makeover treatment helmed by architect Ben Pentreath, the townhouse gradually morphed from its disheveled condition to an exquisitely decorated domicile, characterized by a soft and cozy aesthetic. 

Needless to say, revamping the townhouse was a major undertaking. Tyler understood that realizing her vision—reviving the home’s original splendor—required starting from scratch. “Literally, every window is new, every door is new. We gutted it down to the absolute brick. You would be in the basement looking up to the attic. The only thing that we kept was the stairs, all the beautiful carvings and the banisters, but each step, each tread and riser, had to be remade,” she said.

Tyler remained completely hands-on during the renovation process, as evidenced by many of the personal touches that can be seen throughout the house. There’s the framed photos of her grandmother and her mother, who is author, model, and musician Bebe Buell. Tyler and Pentreath handpicked a stunning vintage chandelier from Alfie’s Antique Market in London. Still shots from Tyler’s 1996 drama “Stealing Beauty” also accentuate the interior.

In the master bedroom sits a chaise lounge that the actress designed and made, plus this creative fave of Tyler’s: a Venetian style hanging mirror that cleverly conceals a flat-screen TV. She also added a pair of doors to a room that formerly served as her office, transforming the space into a central area flanked by two other rooms. Inside are books Tyler’s owned since childhood, stacked reading cushions and silk velvet curtains she selected with the help of designer and interior decorator Vance Trimble.

While Tyler’s most recent real estate acquisition is a London townhouse, the West Village brownstone clearly has her heart. “I’ve been here five times in the past few months. I just come and stay and plan little plans where I invite everyone that I love to come and be with me here. Everything I’ve ever owned is here. All my clothes, all my collections and all the little things.”