By Carter B. Horsley
This pleasant, brown-brick apartment building
in the heart of the desirable Carnegie Hill neighborhood was erected
in 1923 and converted to a cooperative in 1951. The 14-story edifice
has 58 apartments.
It was designed by Rosario Candela, who is
widely considered to have been the countrys greatest designer
of luxury apartment buildings and he collaborated with many of
the citys most famous architectural firms. He collaborated
with Cross & Cross on the design of 720 Park Avenue and with
Arthur Loomis Harmon on the design of 740 Park Avenue, two of
the boulevard's most prestigious structures. He also worked with
Cross & Cross on the design of 1 Sutton Place South and his
other Park Avenue buildings include 765, 770, 778, 1021, 1172,
1192 and 1220. His other famous buildings include 834 and 960
Fifth Avenue and 19 East 72nd Street.
Candelas buildings, "it is said,
were the grandest of the decade that was itself the greatest,"
wrote Elizabeth Hawes in her book, "New York, New York, How
The Apartment House Transformed The Life Of The City (1869-1930)",
published by Henry Holt in 1993.
"He had a respect for privacy and an eye
for significant detail. He was a complete thinker. He added duplicate
water connections to street mains and multiple switches for ceiling
lights as well as beautifully turned staircases and separate wine
cellars. More significantly, he designed buildings from the inside
out. He placed windows where they received light, balanced a room,
or allowed a graceful arrangement of furniture
also invested unusual energy in the entry hall. In a typical apartment,
he made it a full-sized room with rich views into the interior
because he thought it was important to greet a visitor with a
full sense of a home
. Candela liked puzzles. During the
Depression, he took up cryptography, and during World War II,
he broke the Japanese code," Hawes wrote.
Born in Sicily, Candela came to the United
States in 1909 and graduated from the Columbia school of architecture
The building has a one-story rusticated limestone
base and a canopied entrance with a doorman beneath an attractive,
rusticated limestone window reveal on the second floor and a very
impressive and ornate limestone window reveal on the third floor
flanked by female figures. The building, which also has four stringcourses
and nice masonry quoins, has inconsistent fenestration and protruding
air-conditioners. The first floor window sills have nice curved
There are many fine private schools in this
neighborhood as well as many cultural and religious institutions.
The building is not far from public transportation and excellent
retail. It has no health club and no garage.