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

NYC Real Estate News: What NYC Apartments are Breaking Records?

JUNE 27, 2012

A recent interview with noted architect Robert A. M. Stern reveals an insider’s opinion on what makes 15 Central Park West such a sought-after address,NYC Apartments for Sale at 15 Central Park West are in demand. and why the architect himself doesn’t have a home there: He prefers the custom-built windows at his home in one of his other luxury condo buildings, the Chatham at 181 East 65th Street (NYObserver).

Art lovers in West Chelsea are getting more reasons to stay local: The Dia Foundation is moving ahead with plans for expanding its Manhattan headquarters on West 22nd Street. The three new buildings in the project are intended to quietly showcase the art within and honor the history of the neighborhood; they were designed by Roger Duffy of the architecture firm of Skidmore, Owings and Merrill (the design minds behind 101 Warren Street and several other standout NYC towers). The foundation acquired the old Amato Marble Works building last year, making the new project a return to NYC for Dia (NYObserver).

The future of the Brooklyn Bridge Park project that has kept Brooklyn Heights folks buzzing just got a little clearer. Toll Brothers and Starwood Capital will develop the 10-story hotel and residential complex, while Rogers Marvel Architects will design it (CurbedNY).

Private outdoor playgrounds are becoming an increasingly hot amenity. With more families staying in the city, play space in such popular buildings as the Laureate at 2150 Broadway are moving the residences that offer them to the top of buyers’ lists (TheRealDeal).

Buyers from China and Hong Kong accounted for $9 billion of total U.S. home sales in the year ending in March, up 89% from the previous year. Fifteen buyers from Asia have purchased apartments at 515 East 72nd Street this year alone. As a result, developers are keeping Asian buyers looking for NYC condos in mind as they design and market new buildings. The grandest apartments in top-ticket tower One57 at 157 West 57th Street are on the 80th through 88th floors – unit 88 is under contract to a Chinese buyer for about $50 million – a reference to the Chinese belief that eight is a lucky number (WSJ).

The recent $42 million sale of an Upper East Side Italian Renaissance palazzo style home at 973 Fifth Avenue set a 2012 record as the year’s biggest private townhouse deal (CurbedNY).