The Charles was another casualty of the downturn in 2008-2009.
Turns out, though, that it was only partly dead.
Instead of being constructed, the Charles had remained an empty lot on First Avenue and 73rd Street for the last few years.
As development picked up over the last year, so, too, did the plans for this sliver building.
Planned to rise 30 stories, with only 27 units, the layouts and overall plan has been rethought for what appeals today.
With the same marketing team, and the same interior designer, David Collins- who has done a lovely job at The London Hotel here on west 54th street, among others.
With so few apartments, and all of them at least full floor properties, duplexes, or three-level, along with a full complement of amenities, this gem of a building clearly intends to overcome its major obstacle- location- by offering so much more.
Exquisite kitchens, tall ceilings, floor-to-ceiling windows, extraordinary views, custom hardware, large-slab stone flooring in the baths, details, details, details.
With so few apartments, and all of them large, they aim to draw buyers who are affiliated with the nearby hospitals, families who are connected to the
Lycée Français across First Avenue, and for whom the future connection to the Second Avenue Subway offers a value proposition.
However, starting at $1600 per square foot on the lowest floors- the base of the building without as much view or light, to the higher floors, and quickly jumping into pricing that competes with the most successful projects city-wide- the question for me is whether the draw of the New and the allure of David Collins & Ismael Leyva’s vision will be enough to get people to First Avenue.
This is not a new neighborhood, but rather a very established corner of the Upper East Side.
I wonder whether the bright line of Third Avenue, beyond which many monied buyers have not traveled to purchase, will remain bright enough to keep success away.
The Penthouse, and top floors were sold in a large grouping to one buyer.
Two other units are in contract- and 7 out of 27 would be enough to make the condominium effective.
So, the condo is certainly being built.
Given the lack of inventory, perhaps the pricing will stand up and the units will sell.
I have some concerns that the pricing may be a touch too high, but opinions of value are what makes a market.
Apart from the pricing, The Charles delivers a very pretty product for today’s buyers.
It is certainly worth a visit.
More next month- as I visit 50 UN Plaza and 1 Riverside Boulevard.