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Thread: Living In | Carnegie Hill

  1. #1
    The Dude Abides
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    Jan 2005
    NYC - Financial District

    Default Living In | Carnegie Hill

    Living In | Carnegie Hill

    Full-Nest Zone, Empty-Nester Magnet

    This view of 95th Street between Park and Lexington Avenues shows off Carnegie
    Hill’s architecture — one of many assets.


    Published: October 8, 2006

    LAJOS ELKAN, a professor of French, and his wife, Diane, who is retired from advertising, knew they would always have Paris. But when it came to choosing the location for a pied-à-terre — the Ile-Saint-Louis in the City of Light or Carnegie Hill on the Upper East Side — they were won over by the short commute to Carnegie Hill from their three-story Tudor house in Queens.


    Map: Carnegie Hill

    On the Market

    Related: Community Profile

    “With the small restaurants, the beautiful buildings, the culture and the museums on Museum Mile,” said Ms. Elkan, “it reminded us of Paris. It’s really like a little oasis.”

    Mr. Elkan teaches at C. W. Post College on Long Island, and the two have another home in Hillsdale, N.Y. Between classes and trips to France, they plan to spend as much time as possible in the 600-square-foot one-bedroom brownstone apartment they bought on the spur of the moment after looking only casually around Manhattan.

    “It was love at first sight,” said Ms. Elkan, who volunteers at the Museum of Modern Art. “Five weeks later, we owned it.”

    What You’ll Find

    It may have been a “coup de foudre” — love at first sight — for the couple, but they are just two of a growing number of empty-nesters buying into what has long been considered a particularly family-oriented and child-friendly enclave. According to Cornelia Zagat Eland, an executive vice president at Stribling & Associates, older couples are gravitating to the area because of the museums, Central Park and the abundant shops and restaurants.

    “Everything is right at hand,” said Ms. Eland, who has lived in the neighborhood since 1969. “But they also like the quality of life there and the peaceful, residential feel.”

    According to Carnegie Hill Neighbors, the local civic group, the area’s boundaries form an irregular rectangle. Fifth Avenue, along Central Park, is the western edge; the southern one is 86th Street. The northern border, along 98th Street, continues just past Park Avenue. It then turns south, to 96th Street, then east again, up to but not including Third Avenue.

    The housing stock is a mix of sprawling apartment buildings like those that line Park and Fifth Avenues; brownstones on the side streets; a few modern condominium blocks; and grand old mansions, many in use by institutions like the Cooper-Hewitt Museum or the Dalton School.

    There is also a historic district, whose creation was championed by Carnegie Hill Neighbors, one of the city’s most active community groups and one of the few with full-time staffs. Since its founding in 1970, the 1,200-member group has waged well-publicized battles to maintain the low-rise character of the neighborhood. It has fought an adult education center proposed by the 92nd Street Y, as well as rooftop expansion by brownstone owners and plans for high-rise apartments, according to Lo van der Valk, the group president.

    The number of excellent schools continues to make Carnegie Hill popular with families, who also like the comfortable scale. Three- and four-story buildings give it an atmosphere that brings people out onto the streets at all hours. Neighbors seem to know one another, and merchants know customers by name. The neighborhood also has a private night-time security patrol. As a result, parents consider the area extremely safe for children.

    “I feel perfectly comfortable letting my kids ride their scooter in front of the house without having to watch them every minute,” said Kate Manning, a mother of three whose first novel, a psychological thriller called “Whitegirl,” was published in 2002. “You really couldn’t ask for a better neighborhood in terms of safety,” she said.

    For Jeffrey Silverman, who grew up in Carnegie Hill and is now rearing three sons there, it is as convenient for a family as it is safe: everything that anyone could need within walking distance.

    “Between Central Park, the movie theaters on 86th Street, the restaurants and the shops, you could live there and never have to leave,” said Mr. Silverman, who works in leverage finance and recently bought a town house on East 94th Street.

    For those who go to second homes on the weekends, Carnegie Hill has easy access to routes out of town, according to Ms. Eland, the Stribling broker. “And coming back in from the country,” she said, “you can still get a parking space on the street.”

    What You’ll Pay

    Town houses in move-in condition like Mr. Silverman’s are increasingly rare. According to Cathy Franklin, a director of Brown Harris Stevens, town houses in the East 90’s that needed renovation have sold in the $4 million range over the last few months, but brownstones at all price levels have sold quickly. “Town house marketing has been tremendous,” she said.

    Eloise Johnson, senior vice president and associate broker with Halstead Property, said there was little inventory to speak of among condos and co-ops, even at the highest end of the market — 9- and 10-room apartments with Central Park or Park Avenue views. Her current listings include two apartments in the same building, each at 2,700 square feet, being marketed as a possible duplex for $10.9 million. “That would be your McMansion in the city,” she said.

    A 2,700-square-foot Fifth Avenue penthouse with 2,000 square feet of outdoor space and views of the Central Park reservoir recently sold for $5.9 million, while a 3,000-square-foot seventh-floor condominium at 21 East 96th Street is on the market for $4.9 million, Ms. Johnson said.

    For apartments on side streets, she added, the cost per square foot is lower, and smaller units are priced on a par with those in nearby neighborhoods, like East End Avenue or the East 70’s.

    Current Halstead listings include a one-bedroom, one-bath unit at 130 East 94th Street, a prewar doorman building, for $499,000 and, in the same building, a two-bedroom, two-bath unit on the first floor for $890,000.

    Competition in the rental market is particularly acute in Carnegie Hill, according to Fritz Frigan, director of sales and leasing for Halstead Property. “We have people bidding over the asking price,” he said.

    Among current listings are an 1,100-square-foot two-bedroom, two-bath condo on Park Avenue and 95th Street priced at $4,950 a month, while a one-bedroom, one-bath unit in a co-op on 94th Street between Park and Madison Avenues is available for $3,000 a month, Mr. Frigan said. Another one-bedroom apartment, on 86th Street near Madison Avenue, is available for $3,200 a month.

    Studios can range from $1,500 a month, for a 250-square-foot furnished unit, to as high as $2,800 a month for a 500-square-foot space, according to Mr. Frigan.

    What to Do

    The 92nd Street Y, a landmark in the neighborhood, offers lectures, classes and concerts for children and adults. Museums include the Guggenheim, the Cooper-Hewitt, the National Academy Museum and the Jewish Museum, with the Neue Galerie and the Metropolitan Museum of Art a short walk away.

    Central Park is considered the neighborhood’s very own backyard, but in addition, Carnegie Hill has a network of small public playgrounds. It is also well served by major grocery store chains and small restaurants, including the popular new Sfoglia Trattoria.

    Residents are faithful to the small retailers and boutique owners who pride themselves on personal service. According to Ms. Manning, the novelist, the Corner Bookstore is typical, with its program of readings and annual party on Christmas Eve to which the neighborhood is invited. “They are really readers and know just what their customers want,” Ms. Manning said.

    The Schools

    A number of the high-quality public schools available to neighborhood children have fewer than 500 students. The elementary schools all teach kindergarten through Grade 5.

    At Public School 6 on 81st Street, 96.4 percent of fourth graders scored at or above grade level in math, while 90.4 percent scored at or above grade level in reading. Of fourth graders at P.S. 290 on 82nd Street, 96.3 percent scored at or above grade level in math; 87 percent performed at or above grade level in reading.

    At P.S. 198 on Third Avenue, which also has a prekindergarten program, 88.5 percent of fourth graders scored at or above grade level in math, while 55.6 percent scored at or above grade level in reading. At P.S. 77, the Lower Lab School, in the same building, 91.4 percent of fourth graders scored at or above grade level in math while 90.5 percent scored at or above grade level in reading.

    Public school students often go on to the East Side Middle School on York Avenue, which teaches Grades 6 through 8. Among eighth graders, 81.4 percent performed at or above grade level in math, while 88.5 percent performed at or above grade level in English.

    There is also Eleanor Roosevelt High School on East 76th, which is relatively new and teaches Grades 9 through 12. According to the Education Department Web site, its first senior class graduated in June, so SAT scores are not available.

    Hunter College Elementary School, which teaches kindergarten through Grade 6, and Hunter College High School, which covers Grades 7 through 12, are both on 94th Street. They are public, run by the City University of New York for gifted children; applicants are tested.

    Among the many private schools available to neighborhood children are the Allen-Stevenson School on 78th Street, which teaches kindergarten through Grade 8, and Dalton on East 89th, which teaches prekindergarten through Grade 12. Those that teach kindergarten through Grade 12 include Nightingale Bamford, on East 92nd, as well as two girls’ schools on East 91st: Spence and the Convent of the Sacred Heart.

    The History

    Part of what the original Dutch settlers called New Harlem, Carnegie Hill was farmland until the first residential parcels were cut up and sold off in the mid-1800’s. The arrival of the railroad around the same time spurred the construction of brownstone row houses, many of them grand residences of the wealthy owners of the breweries and piano factories that dotted the Upper East Side.

    When Andrew Carnegie built the neighborhood’s first lavish Fifth Avenue mansion in 1902, he started a trend among millionaires like the Vanderbilts, the Posts, the Kahns and the Burdens, whose elegant homes now serve as private schools, museums or consulates.

    What We Like

    The atmosphere is leafy and tranquil, but the streets are lively with children during the day and residents out for a stroll in the evening. The shaded streets lined with elegant mansions and handsome town houses, anchored by grand apartment buildings along Fifth Avenue and Park Avenue, offer one of Manhattan’s most appealing collections of architectural styles.

    Looking Ahead

    The accelerated pace of building renovation along a few side streets has longtime residents worried that Carnegie Hill is losing some of its cozy, familiar feel and becoming an oversanitized island for the very rich. There is concern that escalating retail rents could eventually force out small businesses.

    Copyright 2006 The New York Times Company

  2. #2


    A little corner of heaven on earth? But the cat's out of the bag...

  3. #3


    Upper Crust Catholic School Snags 91st Street Spot for Expansion

    by Dana Rubinstein
    October 1, 2008

    One East 91st Street.

    The Convent of the Sacred Heart School of New York, perhaps the city's most elite Catholic school and owner of the sublime building above, has closed on a much less attractive edifice down the street in which to implement a long-planned school expansion.
    The school, which educates the girls of New York's Catholic elite for more than $30,000 a year, is housed in two former mansions at One East 91st Street, at the corner of Fifth Avenue, but has long sought to expand:
    "For over a decade Sacred Heart has been looking for more physical space to augment its already impressive list of academic and programmatic offerings," wrote Head of School Joseph J. Ciancaglini and Board Chair Cornie Thornburgh in a letter to the school community also posted on the school's Web site. "The search led the administration and the board to consider an array of spaces within a twenty block radius of the school. Throughout the years we have looked at over a dozen options that for one reason or another – insufficient square footage, price – did not work for us. We are thrilled to announce that the search is now over and that we have begun a great work!"

    And so on Sept. 26, the school signed the deed for the Verizon building at 406 East 91st Street, between First and York avenues, for $23 million. The school plans to use the space for top-flight athletic programming:
    "The purchase and redevelopment of this new property will allow us to enrich our academic programs as well as create a first class athletic center. We will begin soon to plan the ways we will use this new space. Our hope is that it will include a topflight pool, a regulation sized gym for volleyball and basketball courts, additional space for specialized physical instruction, perhaps a rooftop artificial turf field and a shuttle bay for a school-owned bus. Moving our athletic program out of the two mansions will allow us to convert the current gym, weight room, gym offices and locker rooms into classrooms."

    © 2008 Observer Media Group,

  4. #4
    NYC Aficionado from Oz Merry's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2002

    Default 1055 Park Avenue

    On the Market: Park Avenue's Glass Slipper

    October 16, 2009, by Sara

    (click thumbnails to enlarge)

    Finally, we can all stop combing legal records for tidbits about lean and crystalline 1055 Park Avenue. The building's first unit (of five), the 2BA, 2BR duplex penthouse, has hit the market! It's asking $9,305,200, plus hefty common charges of $5,527. Some of the building's daring glassiness continues inside: there's a child-friendly "sculptural glass staircase" between penthouse floors. The renderings above are being used for the entire building, and sadly lacking in glass stairways, but when it comes to 1055 Park, we'll take whatever we can get.

    1055 Park Avenue, #PH5 [StreetEasy]
    1055 Park []
    All 1055 Park Avenue coverage [Curbed]

  5. #5
    NYC Aficionado from Oz Merry's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2002


    That is the most gorgeous streetscape .

    Caricaturist's Pretty in Pink Carnegie Hill Townhouse Asks $5.3M

    February 3, 2011, by Sara Polsky

    The Upper East Side and its townhouses have been criticized for being staid and stuffy. 122 East 95th Street doesn't have that problem. Artist Al Hirschfeld drew his famed caricatures of theater folks in his studio in the delightfully pink townhouse, where he lived from the 1940s through his death in 2003. The house is now on the market, the Journal reports. Hirschfeld's desk was recently removed from the premises, to be donated to the New York Public Library, but other quirky leftovers remain, like Hirschfeld-painted fireplace tiles and wallpaper featuring some of his caricatures. There are no hints of these features in the photos on the $5.295 million listing, which mentions the commemorative plaque outside and the "art, society, and theater memories." Still, we think the cat's out of the bag.

    Listing: 122 East 95th Street [Corcoran]
    Hirschfeld Home Where Nina Played on Market [WSJ]

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