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CityRealty's Top 10 Lists

New York City apartment buildings offer the best of everything: views, style, amenities, services, space, location, prestige...

CityRealty's residential architecture expert, Carter B. Horsley, has reviewed and compiled definitive Top 10 lists for every aspect of New York City apartment living and architecture. If you're looking for the right New York City apartment building with the best of something special you want in a home, or you just need to know who has the most spectacular rooftop decks in the city or the most incredible gargoyles, the CityRealty Top 10 lists let you know where it's at.

Top 10 New York City Apartment Buildings for Viewing the Macys Thanksgiving Day Parade

Thanksgiving Day in New York City is usually bitterly chilly. For those not prepared to bundle up and brave the crowds nothing could be better than watching the always fabulous Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade from apartments along the route. Of course, we are talking about watching it live, out the window, not on the tele, and with the windows open at least a crack to hear the roar of the mobs of young people held by their loving elders. The best views are not always from the penthouses but from mid-building, an up-close-and-personal perspective that most pedestrians can't appreciate.

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Top 10 Manhattan Residential Buildings to View Awesome Sunsets

We know that viewing sunsets is one of life's supreme joys, but there are joys and then are slightly better joys. Le Corbusier, the famous modernist architect, is said to have built a country house for his mother with a wall in the field with a hole in it for viewing sunsets - all the better for bringing them into focus and concentration. Let the residents of Battery Park City and Riverside Boulevard and Riverside Drive with unobstructed vistas of the setting sun over New Jersey go blind with their unfiltered exposure. Real Manhattanites know that the best views have something upfront, not necessarily personal, to add some drama. That said, however, several of the best buildings to view awesome sunsets are on the waterfront but they have windows that seem to go from the floor to the clouds. 

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Top 10 Condos, Midtown East

The Top 10 New York City condo apartment buildings in Midtown East are some of the most prestigious in the city because of their prime locations. Trump Tower, Olympic Tower and the Galleria at 117 East 57th Street all took advantage of new zoning provisions aimed at promoting mixed-use skyscrapers.

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Top 10 Condos, Riverside Drive, Riverside Boulevard, West End Avenue

The Top 10 New York City condos west of Broadway on the Upper West Side are surprisingly pretty fairly split between pre- and post-war apartment buildings and those on Riverside Drive, Riverside Boulevard and West End Avenue. The top building is The Heritage at Trump Place at 245 Riverside Boulevard at the base of Riverside Drive because of its commanding vistas both of Riverside Park and the Hudson River. 222 Riverside Drive takes top honor for Riverside Drive because it gracefully mimics its pre-ward cohorts on the elegant thoroughfare. 640 West End Avenue reminds us that West End Avenue is the city's most cohesive and elegant avenue with fine pre-war buildings on both sides of the two-way street.

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Top 10 Most Prestigious Condos, West Side

Since it was built in 2007, 15 Central Park West has been the talk of the town as the top of any list of the Top 10 most prestigious New York City condo apartment buildings. Had it been built 20 years or so earlier – before its two neighbors to the south, Trump International Hotel & Tower and the Time Warner Center, had been built - it might not have been so successful. One could argue that its Post-Modern design by Robert A. M. Stern was just what buyers were yearning for, but most of the area's most prestigious condos are modern and not Post-Modern, at least around Central Park. Its location and amenities certainly help push it over the top. Post-Modern design, of course, met with considerable success at many of Donald Trump's towers along Riverside Boulevard facing the Hudson River were they were designed by architect Costas Kondylis. 

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Top 10 Buildings with Driveways

There is something intangible about a driveway that adds glamour to a New York City apartment building. Perhaps it's the fact that residents and guests don't have to hurdle puddles in their party dresses. Perhaps it's because the hoi polloi, and the paparazzi, can be often kept at bay, at least psychologically, from penetrating too deeply onto the driveway's sidewalk. A mere driveway without a marquee or canopy, of course, would hardly do, in terms of protection from the elements. The most discrete take you inside the building's courtyard. 

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Top 10 Lobbies

The Top 10 Lobbies in New York City apartment buildings pack a lot of surprises. No Plain-Jane-Brown-Paper-Wrapper spaces, these! We talking gilded mosaic barrel vaults conjuring St. Mark's in Venice and angled, multi-level spaces with soaring, skylit atriums, and babbling brooks, and huge coat-rooms overlooking gardens and the East River, and cavernous halls fit for pharaohs, and large gray marble mausoleum-like rooms fit for the stars of the silent screen. 

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Top 10 Fifth Avenue Apartment Buildings

It doesn't hurt to be across from the only real zoo in Manhattan, the only real model sailboat house in Manhattan, and the city's most impressive museum. And if you have Pale Male's seal of approval – a nest – you can't lose. There's really no secret here for the Top Ten Fifth Avenue Apartment Buildings, just very, very, very good credit.

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Top 10 Pre-World War II Apartment Buildings

This list of the Top Ten Pre-World War II New York City apartment buildings is la creme de la creme. What you get is very solid and quiet construction, crisp and prompt service, impeccable location, intriguing fellow residents and an architectural masterpiece, all-in-all, a delectable, irresistible, urban stew.

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Top 10 Condos, United Nations area

The Top 10 New York City condo apartment buildings in the United Nations, and Sutton and Beekman Places neighborhoods are off the beaten path from Midtown but they have always attracted a steady and loyal clientele who enjoy waterfront views without sacrificing proximity to the restaurants and attractions of Midtown. The Trump World Tower became the city's tallest apartment building although it incurred the wrath of many residents for rising above the Secretariat Building of the United Nations. Many others curbed their height and slowly changed the area from pre-war low- and mid-rise apartments buildings to luxury apartment towers such as Three Ten at 310 East 53rd Street, 100 United Nations Plaza, the Mondrian at 250 West 54th Street, and The Collection at 441 East 57th Street.

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