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625 Park Avenue

Northeast corner at 65th Street

By Carter B. Horsley

This great and impressive apartment building was designed by J. E. R. Carpenter, the foremost architect of luxury residential buildings in the city of his generation. It was erected in 1931 and converted to a cooperative in 1968. The 15-story building has 56 apartments.

This is one of Carpenter’s most lavish designs. His other Park Avenue buildings include 550, 580, 630, 635, 640, 655, 812, 950, 960 and 1050. His Fifth Avenue buildings include 810, 825, 907, 920, 950, 988, 1030, 1035, 1060, 1115, 1120, 1143, 1150, 1165 and 1170 as well as 2 East 66th Street.

The building is entirely clad in limestone and the 10th floor corner has a great balcony beneath large arched windows.

625 Park Avenue entrance

"No other penthouse on the avenue can match the twenty-six room triplex at 625 Park," observed James Trager in his excellent book, "Park Avenue, Street of Dreams," (Atheneum, 1990).

"Huge terraces surround the living room, dining room, gallery, library, and kitchen, while other terraces surround the 68’ by 17’ recreation room. All of these rooms except the kitchen and gallery have woodburning fireplaces. The bedroom floor has six bedrooms and a maid’s room. One bedroom is 33’6" x 18’2", another 29’8" x 20’6". Circular staircases connect the three floors. Helena Rubenstein, the cosmetic queen, owned this penthouse for thirty years and used its sixty-eight-foot-long salon for parties and chamber music recitals. A special room was designed to hold her collection of ultraminiature furniture in glass-enclosed dioramas, and another to house a set of Venetian shell furniture and a series of wall murals painted by Salvador Dali. Imperious and demanding, Mme. Rubenstein enjoyed breakfast in bed while hearing presentations from her advertising agency people (who were not even offered coffee). Charles Revson of Revlon, her major competitor in the cosmetics industry, took over the place after Rubenstein’s death in 1965 and behaved in a similar fashion. Revson himself died in 1975," Trager noted.

The building’s superb location is very convenient to many restaurants and fashionable boutiques. Cross-town bus service is just to the north and a local subway station is at Lexington Avenue and 67th Street. The building has a canopied entrance, a doorman, a concierge and consistent fenestration. It has no garage and no health club.

For more information about this building check its entry at CityRealty.com

 

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