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The Gotham Town House, 153 East 57th Street: Review and Ratings

between Third Street & Lexington View Full Building Profile

Carter Horsley
Review of 153 East 57th Street by Carter Horsley

This gray-brick, 21-story building at 153 East 57th Street was designed in 1959 by Philip Birnbaum Associates.

It is a cooperative and has 139 apartments. It is called the Gotham Town House.

The building has a handsome fenestration pattern and some terraces, some of which have angled sides.

The building has a concierge, a garage, discrete air-conditioners, a roofdeck and is pet-friendly.

It has two excellent retail tenants, Royal Athena Galleries, one of the city's premier antiquities dealers, and Crush, a wine store.

According to a April 19, 1998 article in The New York Times by Christopher Gray "Around 1860 the city built a combination prison and courthouse at 153 East 57th Street, and a few brownstones and small factories popped up on the block."

"After 1870," the article continued, "mansion and town-house owners close to Fifth Avenue looked to this block for sites for their private stables....Although 57th Street off Fifth was posh by the 1890s, the block east of Lexington saw little activity until the Queensboro Bridge was built in 1909....In 1925, the National Casket Company built a magnificent showroom at 138 East 57th Street with marble display halls, and the next year the hardware merchant Hammacher-Schlemmer built its present office-showroom at 145 East 57th Street....In 1927 a group of society people took over the old Fayerweather stable at 149 and the adjacent stable at 151 and turned them into a private night spot, the Embassy Club. Their architect, William Lawrence Bottomley, kept the turreted stable as is, with only a coat of white paint and black trim. Bottomley added the sophisticated neo-Federal touches to the front of 151. The 900 members included the architect Kenneth Murchison, the actor Douglas Fairbanks and the violinist Efrem Zimbalist. Representatives of old New York - Stuyvesants, Rhinelanders, Harrimans and Biddles - were also members....In 1930 the Tishman family built the Art Deco building at 136 East 57th street, a suave work by Ely Jacques Kahn, and kept their offices there for two decades....Augustus Van Horne Stuyvesant Jr. died in 1953, and the next year his estate sold his carriage house at 148 to the developer Jack Brause. Mr. Brause leased it to John Nicholson who moved an early version of his Cafe Nicholson into the building....He leased an upstairs apartment to the conductor Skitch Henderson....Around 1959 two new apartment buildins went up at 153 and 157 West 57th Street, replacing the old courthouse and other buildings. At the same time Huntington Hartford put a new neo-Federal front by Casale & Nowell on the old National Casket Company, and the interior was redone in modernist style for the Colombian Center in 1967 by Paul Lester Weiner."

Rating

21
Out of 44

Architecture Rating: 21 / 44

+
18
Out of 36

Location Rating: 18 / 36

+
11
Out of 39

Features Rating: 11 / 39

+
7
=
57

CityRealty Rating Reference

 
Architecture
  • 30+ remarkable
  • 20-29 distinguished
  • 11-19 average
  • < 11 below average
 
Location
  • 27+ remarkable
  • 18-26 distinguished
  • 9-17 average
  • < 9 below average
 
Features
  • 22+ remarkable
  • 16-21 distinguished
  • 9-15 average
  • < 9 below average
  • #25 Rated co-op - Midtown East
 
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