Nick Churton of Mayfair International Realty investigates a Manhattan townhouse with a certain attitude to life.
Manhattan can be a serious place. Downtown around Wall Street it is serious about money. On the Upper East Side it is serious about sophistication. But between the two in the Village it can be serious about fun. And it would be hard to find a townhouse there more dedicated to the enjoyment of life and the city than 221 West 13th Street.
I visited this fascinating house in a delightful neighbourhood that was once the home of beleaguered bohemians. But the money moved in and now it is the home of Bulgari bohemians instead.
But I want to take you straight up to the roof, past three floors of beautiful sitting rooms with party seating, great kitchen, funky baths and seductive bedrooms. It is the roof that really crowns this extravagance.
A retractable glass skylight gives access to this rooftop realm. At one end is an infinity edged Jacuzzi flanked by a wide sun bed and built in barbeque and bar with grill, icemaker and dishwasher. In the middle of the terrace is an outdoor shower with a clear glass floor over the floor below – not perhaps for the modest or prudish! At the other end of the roof is a giant loggia with tented wall. It is perfect for parties or for sleeping under the stars – or both. It works in most weathers, as there is a 75,000 BTU heat and air conditioning unit making this possible. Nor will you miss your favourite TV show here either, as there is Blue-ray entertainment with plasma screen and surround sound system. But then there are TV screens everywhere in this house including the bathroom. There is even one in the in the small entrance foyer – just in case you want to watch the dying seconds of a movie as you dash out of the house.
This house bristles with gadgetry all going hand-in-hand with great attention to detail and a layout designed for a serious art collection. There I go again with that word serious. But seriously this is a seriously fun house.