There used to be a trade-off between city living and country living: the attractions and excitement of living in an urban environment versus the space and amenities that living outside the city could provide. That type of trade-off is all well and good if you're willing to put up with certain limitations. But really, why should there be any limit on the things that some city dwellers have in their homes? According to The WSJ, there's a new class of wealthy people who would normally have made the trade for a suburban mega-mansion replete with all its comforts —back yards, swimming pools, skylights, multiple guest rooms—but now find it easier to just buy an entire building, get rid of upstairs and downstairs neighbors, and enjoy the city as it should be: inside with all their stuff.
Turning an old mansion that was converted into apartments back into its rightful state can take years and run costs into the eight-digit range, but the results can be "very satisfying," according to one owner who spent years waiting for tenants to move out before gutting and restoring a townhouse into a single family residence. Demand for candidate buildings, even when they've seen better days, remains strong. An example of a completed project—ready to move into—can be found at 452 Greenwich Street. The four-story building was recently renovated into a single-family home with five bedrooms, a private garage, wine cellar, roof deck, 38 windows, media center, and a home gym. And it's only $24.5 million!
· In Manhattan Home Search, Some Choose to Go Big [WSJ]
· 452 Greenwich Street [Sothebys via StreetEasy]
· Ultra-Wealthy Need More Mansions, Will Pay [Curbed]
· Re-Gilded Age [Curbed]