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12 East 12th Street: Review and Ratings

between Fifth Avenue & University Place View Full Building Profile

Carter Horsley
Review of 12 East 12th Street by Carter Horsley

This elegant, 12-story, residential condominium at 12 East 12th Street in Greenwich Village was erected in 1907 by the Master Builders Construction.  

It was designed by Samuel Sass who designed the narrower and very similar adjoining tower at 8 East 12th Street in 1901. 

The two joined buildings have a total of 26 apartments. 

The wider building houses Gotham, a well-known restaurant on its ground floor. 

These buildings gained prominence when a 24-foot-high watertower on the wider building was converted to a circular "cottage" designed by Messana O'Rorke. 

The two buildings have similar façades but earlier one has orange spandrels. 

They are across from the Cinema Village movie theater and a very short walk to the east of the impressive First Presbyterian Church on Fifth Avenue.

Bottom Line

A handsome and ornate mid-rise, mid-block pair of buildings just east of Fifth Avenue in very central Greenwich Village location with large apartments.



Both buildings are clad in buff-colored brick, stone and terra-cotta, with a 2-story base mostly painted blue-grey. There is a doorway at each end, topped by triangular pediments with gold ornament and a panel reading "MASTER BUILDERS". In the center is a storefront with modern glass infill. 

The upper floors are organized into three bays of four window panes each, except for the 4th floor, which has three windows separated by stone pilasters supporting a triangular pediments in each bay. The three bays terminate in a segmental-arch with keystone at the 9th floor, where there are also large cartouches between each bay, and a projecting stone cornice with large modillions. 

The top floors have fluted pilasters with deeply recessed window bays. The building is crowned by a bracketed metal roof cornice. 

The buildings have inconsistent fenestration and the newer building is more ornate. 


The building has a key-locked elevator, a video intercom system and pets are allowed.


Apartment 12W is a two-bedroom duplex with 12-foot ceilings on the lower level and a fireplace in the 31-foot-long living room.  The open kitchen has skylights, a breakfast bar and white lacquered cabinetry and stainless steel countertops, a Sub-Zero refrigerator, a Miele dishwasher and a Viking range.  A polished stainless steel circular stair next to the 12-foot-long entry foyer leads to the landscaped roof and the circular cottage with an 11-foot-diameter that has its own central air, heat and cable. 

Apartment 6 is a four-bedroom unit with an entry foyer that leads to a 80-foot-long living room that opens onto a 17-foot-wide dining room and an open 17-foot-long kitchen with an island and a 11-foot-wide maid's room in one direction and a 17-foot-long bedroom with a sliding door in the other.  At the other end of the living room are an office and two bedrooms, all with sliding doors, and another bedroom. 

Apartment 4S is a three-bedroom unit with a narrow entry foyer that leads past a 17-foot-home office to a 30-foot-wide dining room with an open kitchen with an island and the 16-foot-wide living room and a 10-foot-wide, windowed office with a terrace. 

Apartment 5SE is a two-bedroom unit with a 15-foot-wide entry foyer that leads to a 36-foot-long great room with an angled wall and a 13-foot-long open kitchen with an island.  The apartment has a narrow, 19-foot-long terrace.


Out of 44

Architecture Rating: 19 / 44

Out of 36

Location Rating: 25 / 36

Out of 39

Features Rating: 14 / 39


CityRealty Rating Reference

  • 30+ remarkable
  • 20-29 distinguished
  • 11-19 average
  • < 11 below average
  • 27+ remarkable
  • 18-26 distinguished
  • 9-17 average
  • < 9 below average
  • 22+ remarkable
  • 16-21 distinguished
  • 9-15 average
  • < 9 below average
  • #22 Rated condo - Greenwich Village
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Downtown Brooklyn
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