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Iconic NYC views, with 49 Chambers Street to the left, via Compass Iconic NYC views, with 49 Chambers Street to the left, via Compass
When perusing real estate listings in more established New York neighborhoods, two terms tend to come up often: “New York City landmark” and “historic district.” While the two may sound synonymous, there are some differences buyers should be aware of. As the Landmarks Preservation Commission (“Landmarks”) puts it, “Historic districts are collections of landmark buildings that, together, create a distinct sense of place.” As a result, these parts of New York look very similar to the way they did decades ago. With the exception of ordinary repairs and maintenance, any work on buildings in these areas must be approved by Landmarks. New construction is permitted in historic districts, but Landmarks must determine whether the design is compatible with the neighborhood.

While there is definite overlap between the two, it is important to note that not every building in a historic district is a New York City landmark. That honor goes to individual buildings that have, in Landmarks’ words, “architectural, cultural, or historical significance.” These buildings are typically more than 50 years old, though younger buildings have been designated. In these cases, the buildings must be kept in good repair and cannot be altered in a way that detracts from the special qualities that led to the designation as a landmark. As with historic districts, any alterations or demolitions must be approved by Landmarks.

Several multi-family residential buildings have been designated landmarks, making it possible to live in a piece of New York City history. We take a look at listings in both timeless buildings and new updates that took place with Landmarks’ blessing.

Built in 1902 | Designated in 1974

Architect: James & Leo

60 Units | 12 Floors

171-West-71st-Street-01 The Dorilton

"The Dorilton is an outstanding example of French Beaux-Arts architecture in Manhattan" - Landmarks designation report

171-West-71st-Street-01 The Dorilton via Douglas Elliman
From the listing:
After a painstaking, gut renovation this two bedroom beauty is the perfect sun-filled home. The spacious living room room has two south facing, Parisian inspired windows, each with its own window seat. There is an elegant formal dining room that is perfect for entertaining and a work station with a built-in desk, built-in drawer and meticulously restored leaded glass windows.

The sleek, windowed kitchen is a chef's dream with its custom cabinets, top-of-the-line appliances and fabulous counter tops. The two winged bedrooms offer privacy, an abundance of closet space, and both of the luxurious bathrooms have heated floors and are pristine, including the en-suite primary. See floor plan and full details here.

Built in 1908 | Designated in 1966

Architect: Harde & Short

74 Units | 12 Floors

180-West-58th-Street-01 The Alwyn Court

"Few buildings like this have ever been built; there will never be another" - Landmarks designation report

From the listing:
A grand and gracious space with 11' ceilings, this is not your typical one bedroom New York home. As the heart of the home, the formal living room is bathed in light from over-sized windows and double exposures facing east and south making it perfect for entertaining.

With a big picture window, high-end stainless steel appliances, custom cabinetry and granite counter tops, cooking is a pleasure in the kitchen. The adjoining dining gallery is the perfect spot for many memories to come. Other notable features of the home include ornate moldings, plenty of wall space for displaying fine art, original and restored hardwood floors, thru-wall A/C's in every room and City Silence windows throughout.
See floor plan and full details here.

Built in 1912 | Designated in 1985

Architect: Raymond F. Almirall

99 Units | 15 Floors

49-Chambers-Street-01 All images of 49 Chambers Street via Douglas Elliman

"The Emigrant Industrial Savings Bank has a special character, special historical and aesthetic interest and value as part of the development, heritage, and cultural characteristics of New York City." - Landmarks designation report

From the listing:
This one bedroom with study, one-and-a-half bath residence designed by Gabellini Sheppard is housed within one of Manhattan's finest Beaux-Arts landmark buildings. A grand entry door opens to a foyer in this sophisticated home featuring unique craftsmanship and hickory hardwood floors in a custom chevron pattern throughout.

An open kitchen with custom ceruse cypress wood cabinetry by Minimal Cucine, seamlessly integrated into the living / dining room, features honed San Marino marble waterfall island, countertops and backsplash. The best-in-class collection of appliances include a Sub-Zero side-by-side refrigerator and freezer, Gaggenau gas cooktop with hood, Wolf dual convection oven with warming drawer, Miele dishwasher and wine refrigerator.
See floor plan and full details here.

Built in 1926 | Designated in 2002

Architect: Emery Roth and Thomas Hastings

142 Units | 42 Floors

465-Park-Avenue-01 Ritz Tower

"The building's sumptuousness, as well as its location on the corner of Park Avenue and 57th Street, one of the city's most elegant addresses, helped to attract many wealthy and famous residential and commercial tenants" - Landmarks designation report

465-Park-Avenue-01 Interiors via Douglas Elliman
From the listing:
This superb, recently renovated, two-bedroom/two-bath apartment on Park Avenue and 57th Street in the tower of the Legendary Ritz Tower, is now converted into a remarkably elegant one bedroom unit, with impressive entertaining space incorporating a formal Home Office (formerly second bedroom and bath). The sumptuous master bedroom has an en suite bathroom, large dressing room, and an enormous amount of closet space with large windows. The apartment has magnificent panoramic, open, city views to the north, south, and west. See floor plan and full details here.

Built in 1884 | Designated in 1969

Architect: Henry J. Hardenbergh

103 Units | 10 Floors

1-West-72nd-Street-01 All images of The Dakota via Douglas Elliman

"Clearly unique in its architectural character in New York, the Dakota, the city's first luxury apartment house, continues to be a conversation piece." - Landmarks designation report

From the listing:
Grand-scale living at the Dakota. Rare opportunity to own a massive sun flooded meticulously maintained, 4,500-square-foot, 11-room residence with a flexible layout comprised of 4 bedrooms, 4.5 bathrooms, an expansive double-living room, library, formal dining room, den, windowed eat-in kitchen, and separate staff room or office. Noteworthy features include 12' soaring ceilings with original restored moldings, wainscoting, seven stunning and ornate wood-burning fireplaces, hardwood floors, large proportioned rooms, oversized windows with open north, south, east, and west exposures and historical details throughout. See floor plan and full details here.

Built in 1894 | Designated in 1999

Architect: R.H. Robertson

125 Units | 23 Floors

150-Nassau-Street-01 150 Nassau Street

"It is one of the earliest, as well as one of the earliest extant, steel skeletal-frame skyscrapers in New York, partially of curtain-wall construction. This was also one of the city's tallest and largest skyscrapers upon its completion." - Landmarks designation report

From the listing:
Located on a high floor of the landmarked American Tract Society Building, this serene loft-like home boasts high ceilings, newly refinished wide-plank oak floors, original steel columns, a sizable entrance foyer, custom built-ins, a fully-wired speaker system throughout and a gas fireplace. With three exposures offering plenty of cross-breeze, the spacious unit measures almost 1,800 square feet. The open kitchen / living and dining area will delight any chef with top-of-the-line appliances by Viking, Sub-Zero and Miele, plus generous cabinet space and a floor-to-ceiling pantry. See floor plan and full details here.

Built in 1931 | Designated in 1993

Architect: Schultze & Weaver

375 Units | 52 Floors

303-Park-Avenue-01 All images of The Towers at the Waldorf Astoria via Noe & Associates with The Boundary

"The Waldorf-Astoria hotel, continuing to serve as 'New York's Unofficial Palace,' remains one of the city's great hotels and major social establishments, and among the handsomest, if most sedate, of the city's Art Deco skyscrapers." - Landmarks designation report

From the listing:
Own a piece of history at The Towers of the Waldorf Astoria! Residence 3110 is a 1,696-square-foot corner two-bedroom, two-and-a-half-bath home which offers a split bedroom layout with open eastern views and a dramatic view of the Chrysler Building to the south. All interiors have been artfully designed by AD100 Designer Jean-Louis Deniot.

The dramatic entry sequence is defined by a richly appointed and oversized lacquered front door with brass inlays, custom burnished bronze fixtures, and marble surround. One accesses the residence via traditional key or programmable keyless entry system, and the home will have a fully integrated Concierge Closet-a unique and secure portal for the private delivery of packages, dry cleaning, and room service 24-hours a day.
See floor plan and full details here.

Built in 1925 | Designated in 2001

Architect: Warren & Wetmore

60 Units | 91 Floors

111-West-57th-Street-01 All images of 111 West 57th Street via Douglas Elliman

"The style, materials, setbacks and massing, picturesque towers, and decorative elements add distinction to the building and make it a monumental architectural presence along the West 57th Street cultural corridor" - Landmarks designation report

From the listing:
Steinway Hall, originally designed by the celebrated firm Warren & Wetmore, is a distinguished monument to classical music that was completed in 1925. It has now been comprehensively reimagined by SHoP Architects and Studio Sofield to create a limited collection of light-filled, pre-war residences. Classic layouts and traditional features like coved walls, stepped paneled doors and intricately patterned solid oak floors are coupled with every contemporary comfort.

Elevators open directly into the Landmark Penthouse's formal entrance gallery with adjacent interior office and an exquisite powder room finished in jewel onyx. The south gallery leads to the monumental great room which boasts double-height, 26ft vaulted ceilings, a gas fireplace and arched glass doors opening onto a 1,000-square-foot wraparound terrace with exposures south, east and west.
See floor plan and full details here.

Built in 1898 | Designated in 1987

Architect: Stephen D. Hatch and McKim, Mead & White

160 Units | 13 Floors

108-Leonard-Street-01 All images of 108 Leonard Street via Nest Seekers

"The former New York Life Insurance Company Building is a monumental freestanding skyscraper in the neo-Italian Renaissance style" - Landmarks designation report

From the listing:
Paying homage to the most coveted elements of an architectural masterpiece at 108 Leonard, ornamental majesty and historic provenance are paired anew with fresh modern forms and contemporary design priorities. This 1,301-square-foot, 2-bedroom, 2.5-bath residence features uncompromised scale, volume and character. Upon arrival, a spacious gallery proceeds to an exceptional corner great room with dramatic windows, expansive walls for art and high ceiling heights.

Wide plank blond oak flooring elegantly arranged in a chevron pattern runs throughout entertaining and transitional spaces. Custom designed by Jeffrey Beers International exclusively for 108 Leonard, Scavolini cabinetry is featured in an open plan kitchen with Arabescato Cervaiole marble countertop, backsplash and waterfall island replete with supplemental storage and ideal for both every day and occasional entertaining. Generously proportioned, the kitchen is outfitted with premium Miele appliances including a 5 -burner gas cooktop with vented hood, combi steam/convection oven, electric speed oven and wine refrigerator.
See floor plan and full details here.

Built in 1931 | Designated in 1984

Architect: Emery Roth and Margon & Holder

208 Units | 30 Floors

300-Central-Park-West-01 All images of The Eldorado via The Corcoran Group

"The Eldorado is a fine essay in Art Deco design as expressed in the brickwork, ornament, entrance, balconies, and window" - Landmarks designation report

From the listing:
Peerless Reservoir and Park panoramas illuminate a 12-room, 5400-square-foot, duplex penthouse atop the iconic Eldorado. This residence is graced by ubiquitous sun, beautifully scaled rooms and a high ratio of window to wall Park frontage. Entering its broad center gallery from a semi privé landing, one is captivated by a 50' Central Park tableau filling the eastern walls of a magnificent living room and adjacent library opening onto a lovely terrace overlooking the Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis Reservoir.

Completing the impressive entertainment area is an embassy size formal dining room, chef’s eat in kitchen, two staff bedrooms and an additional northwest facing terrace. A grand staircase leads to the bedroom wing which contains a generous master suite with sweeping park views from oversized windows and a large dressing room. Four more master bedrooms, one with its own park view terrace, are well located in distinct areas.
See floor plan and full details here.

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