After more than a decade in development, sales finally launched this summer at 45 Park Place, the skyscraper developed by Sharif El-Gamal of Soho Properties. Construction on the 667-foot skyscraper—whose long, often troubled history is recapped thoroughly here—began last summer, seemingly putting that past behind it. And now, Soho Properties has opened a sales gallery for the development, offering prospective buyers a peek at the building’s 50 ultra-luxury condos.
The sales gallery is located on the ground floor of a Tribeca building, about a half mile from where the tower will eventually rise. It took about six months to build out the model—in part, because interior designer Piero Lissoni was involved in every part of the process of putting the gallery together. (Eventually, a sales gallery will move into the building, though that’s still more than a year off.)
There are several components to the sales gallery: the entrance is a smaller-scale version of 45 Park Place’s lobby, which will feature an emerald plaster wall and a blackened bronze reception desk. Models of a “great room,” a Boffi kitchen, master bathroom, and powder room are all to-scale for one of the building’s full-floor units, and show off the lovely fixtures and materials—all selected by Lissoni—found throughout. Even the furniture is from Lissoni’s own lines.
“It’s all about Piero Lissoni,” says Mary Ellen Cashman of Stribling, which is handling sales for the building. It’s the Italian designer’s first residential project in the city, and his heritage is all over the model, from the stone and fixtures (from MOMA Design) used in the master bathrooms, to the enormous kitchen, which serves as a focal point—done so, according to Cashman, because of its importance in Italian homes.
Lissoni is one quarter of the team working on the building as a whole, which includes developer El-Gamal, and architect Jean Nouvel, who will design the building’s “serenity garden,” along with the Muslim cultural center that will eventually rise next to the skyscraper. While Lissoni is responsible for the interiors, Michael Abboud of SOMA Architects is behind the building’s sleek, stepped exterior.
While the development has been a long time coming, it’s arriving at a particularly auspicious time. In the past few years, the Financial District has gained new cachet with the arrival of attractions like Santiago Calatrava’s World Trade Center Transportation Hub—a $4 billion boondoggle, but one that has garnered plenty of attention—along with myriad cultural, shopping, and dining options that make it feel like more of a neighborhood, and less like a place where people go to work and then leave.
The gallery includes a map of the area, showcasing some of those offerings and how 45 Park Place fits within that new neighborhood. “Our timing is perfect,” says Cashman. “The infrastructure for having a rich residential life is now in place, and that’s something that was a long time coming downtown.”
And the success of nearby developments, including 30 Park Place and the Woolworth Building, have shown that demand for these sorts of residences is there—though Cashman thinks the buyer for 45 Park Place is different from those buildings.
“We’re a boutique condo with a very strong amenity package, but without the hustle and bustle,” Cashman explains. “What we’re seeing from our buyers is that … they’re actually going to be living in the building.” While Soho Properties wouldn’t confirm how many units it’s sold so far, Cashman says that “for this time of year, and the market in general, we’re pleased.”