Ian Schrager is best known for transforming older hotels into decadent modern destinations. In 2005, though, his company took on something a little different, gut renovating a pre-war New York City shul into a luxurious residence that's now up for rent. Let's take a look at the Schrager spin on the home as sanctuary — or in this case, sanctuary as home.
Step out of the bustle of the East Village and into this wenge-panelled oasis. The tall windows are a nice nod to the building's past without being overly liturgical, and the exposed brick brings in a needed hit of edginess.
Heading towards the back of the house, the wenge continues from the living room into custom-built kitchen cabinets. I'm not sure the granite-topped island is, as the listing says, 20 feet long, but six stools and double ovens mean this kitchen is equipped to feed the whole family.
The dining room opens onto a spacious terrace (one of three in this four-storey townhouse). There's plenty of light from the wall of glass, but the cosy matching walls and ceiling and almost cobwebby chandelier create an intimate, cocoon-like feel.
A second-floor library has a fireplace and wet bar tucked into a glossy marble panel. Floor-to-ceiling bookshelves and a pedestal table feel traditional, but the metal frames and tangerine sofa are hotel-worthy touches of glitz.
The principal bedroom — one of four — manages to be both dramatic and soothing, thanks to the deep blue drapes and walls. The bedroom itself is a bit small, but between the terrace (complete with a hot tub), walk-in closet, and ensuite bathroom, the suite takes up nearly the entire third floor.
Intrigued? I certainly am, even if I'd have to pray for a miracle to cover the $23,500 per month rent.
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1-5. Town Residential