By Carter B. Horsley
This elegant 16-story apartment house has only
one apartment per floor and is one of the most attractive in the
very desirable and pleasant Carnegie Hill neighborhood.
Erected in 1925, the building, which has a
very elegant lobby, was converted to a cooperative in 1951.
Above its rusticated limestone base, the buildings
facade is dark brick except for the next to the top floor which
is also limestone. The penthouse has balustraded walls above the
buildings cornice and beneath its handsome and large watertank
enclosure which has Italian Renaissance-style window surrounds
and three arched designs in brick on each facade.
The Fifth Avenue facade and the longer sidestreet
facade are finely detailed, symmetrical compositions highlighted
by limestone pilasters. While facades that are clad entirely in
limestone are generally thought to be more impressive than brick
facades, this building demonstrates that deft handling of the
composition can be very appealing, indeed.
Here, the "mixed" facade is especially
appealing because it is contextual with the building directly
across 94th Street, the International Center of Photography building,
one of the finest Georgian-style mansions ever erected in the
city. The mansion was designed by Delano & Aldrich and completed
in 1913 for Willard Straight, a founder of the New Republic magazine
whose wife, Dorothy, was a leading suffragette, a founder of the
Junior League of New York and a member of the Whitney family.
Before it was converted into the photography center, the mansion
served for many years as the headquarters for the National Audubon
Society after 1952. In 2001, the building began to be converted
back to a single-family residence for a new owner.
Although far uptown, this quiet neighborhood
is extremely desirable because of its many private schools, religious
institutions and museums. It also has many attractive restaurants
nearby along Madison Avenue and cross-town bus service is nearby
at 96th and 97th Streets. The building has a doorman, a very handsome
lobby, but no garage, no balconies and no health club.