Was it too good to be true? That was my thought upon seeing the renderings of the penthouse duplex at Seven Harrison Tribeca months ago. The answer is no, it’s even better — and it’s on the market now … if you have $25 million to spare.
You’ve seen planted terraces before, but the ones at Seven Harrison feel like an actual park: with a combination of honey locust, Fuji cherry, and hornbeam trees planted into the floor of the roof, not in planters. The 2,351-square-foot landscaped terrace with a reflecting pool was designed by Rees Roberts + Partners. Architect Steven Harris of Steven Harris Architects designed the penthouse and renovated the entire building.
Harris lived at Seven Harrison for 34 years prior to being offered a buyout for his second-floor loft. He took the buyout and added a request: that he receive the commission to renovate the entire building. He got it, and explains that the floor they demolished from his loft in order to make a double-height space with a maisonette unit allowed for the square footage to be relocated to the roof. “So in theory,” he says, “that is my old apartment.”
The expansive nine-foot-tall glass-window walls allow for an immersive indoor-outdoor feeling. “We pushed the frame of the glass down below the floor level and used the same stone inside and out, so you have a continuous line from interior to exterior,” Harris says. The limestone flooring in all of the entertaining areas — including the dining room here — is hydronically heated in order to keep bare feet cozy in the winter.
There are two living-room areas inside the glass house, one facing north and one facing south, shown here. “It’s a very fluid space,” Harris says, “almost like a free plan; [the two family rooms] move from one to the other. At the same time, the spaces are relatively discrete. You could imagine children watching television on one side and adults reading Proust in the other, or vice versa — probably more likely.”
Who can tell how much open sky will be left of the city when all is said and done? But these views of turn-of-the-century neighboring architectural details are gorgeous to look at. “It has a kind of intimacy about it,” Harris says, referring to the view. “It’s like being in Paris almost. I vastly prefer this to being on the 97th floor in something that looks at Kansas.”
The second living room facing north features a gas fireplace that can stay as is or be converted to wood-burning. In that event, there would be plenty of room to store wood outside.
The four bedrooms are downstairs. The master bath, one of four bathrooms plus a powder room upstairs, has flooring and countertops of honed Imperial Danby slab marble. I love that the door frames are so high. Luxury residences fall flat with skimpy door frames.
The master bedroom has three exposures and an en suite bathroom, dressing room, and closets.
The kitchen is a grand affair, with outdoor space beyond the glass wall and custom bleached-walnut cabinets. There’s also a scullery room! This means you can feel like you have your own 21st-century Downton Abbey with a room to store your boots — and other gear you might need for penthouse country living.
And when the sun sets and the trees grow, nobody even has to know you are here.