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The Octago, The Dakota, and 55 Central Park West The Octago, The Dakota, and 55 Central Park West
According to a recent study from WalletHub, New York has been named the best city for enjoying Halloween, outstripping runner-up San Francisco by six points. Factors like walkability, friendliness to trick-or-treaters, and number of costume and candy stores per capita were key factors in the designation.

If the study had included spooky destinations, it would have further burnished New York’s standings. Countless horror movies have begun with the premise of unwittingly moving into a haunted house, but such films do not take New Yorkers’ intrepidity into account. They accept that the city’s rich history contains spooky, even grisly stories, and that some of these are associated with the city’s most prestigious addresses.

Architect: Henry J. Hardenbergh | Built in 1882

Neighborhood: Central Park West

93 Units | 10 Floors

The-Dakota-Central-Park03 The Dakota (Douglas Elliman)
It's perhaps the city's most legendary apartment building, and you'd think that between Rosemary's Baby (which was used for exterior shots of the fictional Bramford), John Lennon's murder and a host of reported ghost sightings throughout the years, this massive, fortress-like co-op building with apartments as big as its reputation would scare people off. But it's still one of the most coveted residences in the city.

The Dakota, 1 West 72nd Street The Dakota, #82/83/84 (Bespoke Real Estate)
Central Park West co-ops
From the listing:
At approximately 6,000 square feet, the largest of apartments at the storied Dakota showcasing predominantly eastern Central Park views that wrap around to the north over 73rd Street, this home is a unique offering to a limited group of discerning buyers. A proper, handsome vestibule greets you upon entry, granting access to the separate formal dining room and an impressive corner living room, both with wood-burning fireplaces and soaring 11-foot ceilings. An elegant library and an enormous eat-in kitchen with top-of-the-line appliances and luxurious finishes round out the inviting, lush entertaining spaces. Staff quarters, a service area and a well-apportioned bedroom are tucked at the wing. See floor plan and full details here.

Architect: Charles Coolidge Haight | Built in 1887

Neighborhood: Central Park West

99 Condos | 25 Floors

455-Central Park West-03 Image courtesy of RKTB Architects
Among the neighborhood's surrounding townhouses and historic co-op buildings, the stunning architectural anomaly that is the "castle" at 455 Central Park West has a dark medical history as New York’s first cancer hospital. Built in 1887, when cancer treatment was somewhat of an oxymoron, the castle had a crematorium and a smokestack at the back that was often in use. The hospital closed in 1955, but it wasn't until a redevelopment plan took off in 2000 that it welcomed more fortunate residents at a luxury condo development.

455 Central Park West 455 Central Park West. Photo via Sotheby's International Realty
Central Park West condos 455 Central Park West, #LM20 (Compass)
Upper West Side condos
From the listing:
Live like Royalty in The Castle!!! This extraordinary Central Park West duplex apartment features fully renovated 4-bedroom, 4.5-baths, and a large eat-in kitchen. A grand foyer opens to a beautiful staircase curving upward to the second floor. The breathtaking circular living room, lined with windows facing south and west with Central Park views, is truly unique, with a spectacular 37-ft cathedral ceiling in one of the five turreted structures. It truly invokes the royal treatment! See floor plan and full details here.

Architect: Schwartz & Gross | Built in 1930

Neighborhood: Central Park West

109 Condos | 20 Floors

55-Central-Park-West-03 A spookier 55 Central Park West shown in 1984 movie Ghostbusters
55 Central Park West is a 19-floor co-op on the Upper West Side popularized by the 1984 film Ghostbusters. Its Gothic-like Art Deco stylings made the perfect fit (in addition to some CGI which increased its height and scare-factor) to play the central haunted high-rise in the film. The building is sometimes colloquially known as Spook Central or the Shandor Building, the fictional name it's given in the film. Quite lovely in person, the landmarked building was designed by the architectural firm Schwartz & Gross and finished in 1929. Its exterior brickwork transitions from a dark tone to a more yellow tone thought to make it seem as if the sun were always shining on the building. Not spooky at all.

55-Central-Park-West Its view of the super-skinny supertalls on Billionaires' Row could be unsettling to some..
55-Central-Park-West No terror dogs here, but the building welcomes pets. (#9C, Brown Harris Stevens)
Central Park West co-ops
From the listing:
Perfectly situated above the tree line, this beautifully renovated corner four-bedroom, three and one half-bathroom home boasts stunning Central Park and skyline views. Designed by world renowned architect Shamir Shah, and boasting approximately 3,300 square feet, ALL major rooms, including the kitchen and dining room, have Park views. The sunken living room and corner dining room take advantage of large casement windows to showcase Central Park and the skyline. A den with powder room features excellent storage space, two built-in desks and side views of Central Park. See floor plan and full details here.

Architect: Horace Trumbauer | Built in 1904

Neighborhood: Upper East Side Gold Coast

12 Condos | 6 Floors

1-East-62nd-Street-01 The Spencer (Sotheby's International Realty)
While Joan Rivers moved to her Upper East Side apartment following the death of her husband, she wasn’t there alone: In an episode of Celebrity Ghost Stories, she shared the story of how she brought in a professional to help her deal with “Mrs. Spencer,” the ghost of a former resident thought to be a niece of J.P. Morgan. Mrs. Spencer apparently messed with her electrical appliances; however, once she hung an old portrait of Mrs. Spencer in the building’s lobby, the haunting stopped. There has been no word of it since the apartment sold following Ms. Rivers' death, though.

Upper East Side condos The Spencer Condominium, #2A (Sotheby's International Realty)
Upper East Side apartments
From the Listing: This unique one-of-a-kind home with 16.4-foot high ceilings is available for the first time in more than 35 years. Three large French bay windows with original wrought iron balconies and a wood burning fireplace completes the expansive living room which adjoins a formal dining area with abundant space for entertaining-beyond there is a windowed kitchen with bar style seating and a bedroom that can also be used as a home office with a full bath, as well as a laundry room that completes the first floor of this unique duplex home. The primary bedroom suite with a spa-like bathroom and abundant closet space enjoys lush views of the historically remarkable mansions which the elegant tree-lined East 62nd Street is known for. See floor plan and full details here.

Architect: J.G. Glover | Built in 1851

Neighborhood: Clinton Hill

25 Condos | 5 Floors

320-Washington-Avenue-01 All images of Graham Condo via Compass
To hear “The Graham Home for Old Ladies,” as 320 Washington Avenue was known from 1899 to the early 1960’s, one imagines a genteel atmosphere behind its Romanesque Revival facade. However, it wasn’t all tea parties and knitting circles: In 1887, a nurse resigned after accusing a matron and nurse of abusing the residents. Several others weighed in, and one doctor even said that “old people are worse than children.” No evidence of abuse was found and the incident faded away, but neighborhood children would refer to it as “the spooky building” in the years before it was converted to a luxury condominium. The interiors bear little resemblance to the olden days, but the exterior and grounds have been restored to their former glory.

Architect unknown | Built in 1843

Neighborhood: West Village

1 Unit | 4 Floors

267-West-11th-Street-01 267 West 11th Street (CityRealty)
Earlier this month, 267 West 11th Street entered contract with an asking price of $25 million in an off-market deal. The buyer was not identified, nor is it clear whether they knew about the house’s history: In 1893, well-known madam Annie Sutherland died suddenly in the basement apartment she kept in the Greek Revival mansion. Her ex-husband was found to have poisoned her with belladonna, and was sentenced to death by electrocution.

Architect: Alexander Jackson Davis | Built in 1881

Neighborhood: Roosevelt Island

500 Rentals | 13 Floors

The Octagon, 888 Main Street The Octagon, 888 Main Street. Image via Bozzuto Management Company
NYC's Spookiest Buildings NYC's Spookiest Buildings (
One of the city's greatest landmarks, the Octagon was designed by Alexander Jackson Davis in 1841 to anchor of the New York Pauper Lunatic Asylum on Blackwell’s Island. The institution's patients were moved to Ward's Island in 1893, and the buildings eventually fell into terrible disrepair and were destroyed by a fire. That island is now Roosevelt Island, and the former insane asylum site hosts a luxury rental building with crazy amenities like a concierge, a pool, a gym, parking, two kids' playrooms, daycare, a movie room, a lounge and free shuttle buses to transit.

The-Octagon-Leasing The Octagon Leasing (
The Octagon-Apartments-03 Yea, we know. New York has gone soft. (Credit: The Octagon Leasing)
From the listing:
One-bedroom residences at The Octagon enjoy versatile floor plans featuring expansive double pane windows that allow a rush of natural light and water views, while chef-inspired kitchens are designed to excite your culinary spirit. Soaring ceilings are featured throughout and the convenience of an in-home washer/dryer is available in select homes. See floor plan and full details here.

More NYC buildings with a spooky rep

30-Morningside Drive 30 Morningside Drive is a partial rental conversion of St. Luke's Hospital's historic buildings

30 Morningside Drive

Two-beds from $7,300/mo
Three-beds from $10,570/mo
Four-beds from $13,100/mo

The Parkside Brooklyn
125 Parkside Avenue

Studios from $2,650/mo
One-beds from $3,350/mo

30-Morningside-Drive-01 Image via Del Shah Capital
125-Parkside-Avenue-01 The Parkside via Ray Builders
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