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A Guide to the Most Absurdly Named Buildings in NYC

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Recently, Million Dollar Listing star Fredrik Eklund announced a new condo project on Williamsburg's Berry Street called Williamsberry. This is a very silly name for a building in which ostensibly serious adults are going to live—it sounds like a froyo shop or a fancy English butler. But the truth is that every building name is silly because buildings already come with names: their addresses. Sure, there are exceptions— the Chrysler Building, for instance, is a special building with a dignified and logical name—but for every Chrysler Building there are a dozen 260N9s. Because who would buy a condo there if it was just called 260 North 9th Street?

Weird Spellings of Addresses

260N9 leads us into our first category: buildings that are almost just going by their addresses, but have decided to randomly spell out numbers, or abbreviate and/or combine words to create some monstrosity that no one will ever say out loud. 2ND7TH is a recent offender in this category, as is Five FortyOne, and, less recently, Twenty9th Park Madison. These types of buildings also sometimes like to combine a random word with the number from the address, such as Colony 1209, which sounds like it's on the moon.

Human Names

Another very common approach often taken by building namers is to name them as one would a human child, with a "the" in front. This can result in condos that sound like your grandfather (The Seymour, The Leonard) or a pop star (The Adele, The Robyn) or...just some guy...that you live inside of. (That one, The Nathaniel, gets an additional dishonorable mention for being named after the protagonist in an Ayn Rand novel.)

Anything With the Word "Mews"

A mews is a row of stables and carriage houses constructed around a paved courtyard. The few that still exist in New York City have, for the most part, seen the stables torn down and replaced by houses which essentially now exist on a private and secluded dead-end street—a rarity, obviously, in Manhattan. This makes them quite coveted. It has also led a number of condo developers to call their buildings, erroneously, Soho Mews, Chelsea Mews, Carlton Mews, etc.

Fake Nods to History

It's one thing to pave over a historic site with a glassy condo building, but it's another entirely to pretend to celebrate the history that you are actively wiping away by naming the building after, say, a former vaudeville theater.

Names That Sound Like Things They're Not Supposed To

Had no one involved in the creation of Jade8 ever heard of J-Date? Did no one on the development team behind Mantena think to Google that word? Other honorable mentions in this category include BKLYN Air, which sounds like an off-brand sneaker, and MiMa, which sounds like something you call your grandmother. And then there's the Isis Condominium on the Upper East Side (h/t to commenter newkyz). Though that one isn't exactly the developers' fault (it was developed in 2008), it has declined to change its name, unlike the Isis in Miami.

The Faux-Classy

Casa Moderne may be cringe-worthy, but it's probably a step up from the building's original name, Casa Bella Artes (Fine Arts House, or, in Latin, Cottage War Skills). Pretty much anything with a variant of the word modern works here—Modern 19, for instance. Also, The Continental Park, which is neither continental nor a park.


West 37th Street, New York, NY 10018