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A blog from CityRealty (Links below will take you to the 6sqft site)


These schools are rich in original architectural details, but the interiors are top residential (PS 90 in Harlem) These schools are rich in original architectural details, but the interiors are top residential (PS 90 in Harlem)
Schoolchildren throughout New York are looking forward to a three-day weekend, but the real estate industry doesn't take a holiday, especially where long-shuttered schools are concerned. These buildings are often located in highly coveted neighborhoods and date back to the late nineteenth to early twentieth century. While the interiors may be unfit for an academic environment anymore, developers and designers find that these serve as excellent bones for a residential setting. The result is expansive apartments with high ceilings located in a historic setting.

Below, see the most masterful transformations of city schools into luxurious residences with high-end finishes and amenities. A handful of units are on the market , but with the in-demand addresses, eye-catching architecture, top-of-the-line interiors, and rich histories, it's no surprise that availabilities in these buildings are few and far between.

The Glass Farmhouse, Midtown West
448-West-37th-Street-1 All images of The Glass Farmhouse via Compass
448-West-37th-Street-1 All images of The Glass Farmhouse #8B via Compass
448-West-37th-Street-2 Dining area and kitchen
448-West-37th-Street-3 Bedroom
A few short blocks from Hudson Yards, this brick and limestone loft building was converted to condominiums with 12' ceilings, light-filled living space, and open skyline views. This expansive apartment boasts tall casement windows, beamed ceilings, and endless storage space throughout. The open chef's kitchen flows into a large dining space and comes outfitted with custom cabinetry, glass backsplash, granite countertops, enormous island, and state-of-the-art appliances. The building welcomes pets and offers an attentive staff, a laundry room, and a newly landscaped roof deck with 360-degree views. See further details here.

The Beekman Regent, Midtown East
351-East-51st-Street The Beekman Regent via Corcoran
351-East-51st-Street-1 All images of The Beekman Regent via Compass
351-East-51st-Street-2 Kitchen
351-East-51st-Street-3 Bedroom
The Beekman Regent, originally Primary School No. 35, is listed on the National Register of Historic Place and was the 2002 winner of the Mercedes Benz Property Award for "Finest New Redevelopment in the World." One look at its many setbacks and design reminiscent of The Dakota is enough to show how it won. This loft-like apartment features soaring ceilings, oversized windows, crown molding, and grand entrance foyer. Amenities at this doorman building include a gym, conference room, lounge, laundry room, package room, and on-site valet parking garage. See further details here.

555-West-End-Avenue 555 West End Avenue (Rendering credit of Hayes Davidson
555-West-End-Avenue-1 All images of 555 West End Avenue via Sotheby's
555-West-End-Avenue-2 Kitchen
555-West-End-Avenue-3 Master bath
Ever since this Upper West Side Catholic school was built at the beginning of the 20th century, residents and visitors have marveled at the carved stone façade elements, parapets, filigreed windows, limestone window bays, and turrets among the eye-catching details of the English collegiate and Gothic style design of William A. Boring's design. Cary Tamarkin, a contemporary architecture luminary, restored these elements while adding a discreet penthouse and making minor alterations, all with Landmarks' blessing. The school provided excellent bones for apartments throughout, and the two-level library takes that even further with a 42' Great Room, cathedral-like ceilings, massive arched windows, and mezzanine-level master suite. See further details here.

PS90, Harlem
220-West-148th-Street-1 All images of PS90 via CORE
220-West-148th-Street Living room
220-West-148th-Street Roof deck
Originally a public elementary school, PS90 graduated to a highly desirable doorman condominium. Its elaborately ornamented terra cotta and limestone exterior was carefully restored to its original detail, but the interiors had to be torn out and replaced. Nevertheless, the school's grand proportions can be seen in the spacious rooms, 12' ceilings, and 10' windows. The front and back courtyards have been newly landscaped, and additional amenities include a fitness center, lounge, and storage space. See further details here.

Public School 9 Annex, Prospect Heights
279-Sterling-Place 279 Sterling Place via Compass
279-Sterling-Place Living room
279-Sterling-Place Kitchen and living area
Public School 9 Annex may have been built out of the necessity to relieve overcrowding at the school across the street, but the result is a Romanesque Revival building that would become a New York City landmark and entrant on the National Historic Registry. The interiors were masterfully converted to contemporary homes with soaring ceilings, oversized windows, excellent storage, and top-of-the-line appliances and finishes. The building welcomes pets and benefits from an address just off Grand Army Plaza. See further details here.

29 King Street, Soho
29-King-Street-1 All images of 29 King Street via CORE
29-King-Street Great Room
New development is going up all over Hudson Square, but this Queen Anne-style building dates back to 1886, when it was built as a grammar school. Nearly 100 years later, the New York City Board of Education auctioned off Public School 8 and The Brodsky Organization bought it. In the present day, apartments show signs of their classroom pasts with soaring ceilings and oversized picture windows. They come outfitted with modern appliances, LED lighting, and generous closet space, but not at the expense of historic elements like exposed brick and oak floors. See further details here.

Inkwell, Midtown West
520-West-45th-Street All images of Inkwell via Brown Harris Stevens
520-West-45th-Street Living room
520-West-45th-Street Study
When P.S. 51 was originally built at the beginning of the 20th century, it was said to be one of the first New York City schools to serve its students lunch. More than a century later, the Beaux Arts building would be another trend-setter as it got converted from a school to a condominium. Elements of its previous incarnation come through in the form of chalkboards for grocery lists, cubbyholes for shoes, and rolling ladders for storage units in the attractive apartments. Additional features include 13' ceilings, tall windows, bespoke cabinetry and millwork, and, in select units, gas fireplaces and private terraces. See further details here.

The School House, Lower East Side
371-Madison-Street All images of The School House via Modern Spaces
371-Madison-Street Swimming pool
371-Madison-Street Courtyard
The Lower East Side is one of New York's most vibrant neighborhoods, but this prewar school has been converted to loft-like apartments that act as light-filled oases from the hustle and bustle. It has a full-time doorman, and building amenities include a fitness center, near-Olympic-sized pool, laundry room, on-site parking, bike room, screening room, and courtyard. See further details here.

The Residences at PS186, Hamilton Heights
526-West-146th-Street The Residences at PS186 via Dattner Architects
via Dattner Architects
At the beginning of the 20th century, this Neoclassical school building was designed by New York City Chief C.B.J. Snyder. Over 100 years later, after the structure had fallen into significant disrepair, Dattner Architects took on the task of preserving its historic exteriors and converting the interiors to community space for the Boys and Girls Club of Harlem and affordable apartments. The units boast 14' ceilings, and residential amenities include a video intercom, laundry room, community room, bike room, and the services of a live-in superintendent. See further details here.

17 Monitor Street, Greenpoint
17-Monitor-Street All images of 17 Monitor Street via Watermark Capital Group
17-Monitor-Street Kitchen/dining area
17-Monitor-Street Roof deck
A short distance from the L train, the St. Cecilia Catholic School has been converted to a modern "residential retreat" while honoring its prewar architecture. Interiors feature 14' ceilings and high-end finishes and fixtures. Residential amenities include fitness center and yoga studio, lounge with pool tables, and furnished rooftop with Manhattan skyline views. See further details here.

2269 First Avenue, East Harlem
2269-First-Avenue 2269 First Avenue via Issac | Stern Architects
Construction is expected to wind down soon on the former P.S. 185 in East Harlem, which is expected to be rentals upon completion. A brick and glass addition will seamlessly be incorporated into the original school, and all sections will get new casement windows. Many apartments will have private terraces, and amenities will include a fitness center, lounge, and media room. See further details here.

174 Pacific Street, Cobble Hill
174-Pacific-Street 174 Pacific Street via Brown Harris Stevens
174-Pacific-Street-1 All images of 174 Pacific Street via Compass
174-Pacific-Street-2 Foyer
174-Pacific-Street-3 Bedroom
The onetime P.S. 78 is a New York City landmark that gets an A in renovations! All lofts feature soaring ceilings, hardwood floors, and exposed beams while incorporating modern appliances and infrastructure. This apartment includes the original cupola tower that looks out on stunning views of the Manhattan skyline and the Statue of Liberty from arched windows, and now houses a bedroom. Additional features include a wood-burning fireplace, kitchen with skylight, and luxurious master suite. The building is conveniently located near popular restaurants and transportation. See further details here.
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