Hudson Yards is now NYC’s most expensive neighbourhood. I toured the first residential building to open in the $25 billion neighbourhood — and it was clear it’s selling much more than just real estate.
One afternoon in mid-January, I visited 15 Hudson Yards, an 88-story luxury tower in New York City. It was the first residential building to open in Hudson Yards, a new neighbourhood on Manhattan’s West Side that opened in March 2019.
On my tour of 15 Hudson Yards, which was designed by Diller Scofidio + Renfro and Rockwell Group, I got a sneak peek of a model unit and the building’s 40,000 square feet for amenities on the 50th and 51st floors.
At $US25 billion, Hudson Yards is the most expensive real-estate development in US history. And as of October 2019, it’s the most expensive neighbourhood in New York City, with a median sale price of $US5 million, according to a new PropertyShark report.
The site’s first open residential building, 15 Hudson Yards, known for its 40,000 square feet worth of lavish amenities, welcomed its first residents in February.
“Our world-class amenities and residences truly embody the spirit of Hudson Yards, where stunning architecture and design meet next-level wellness and entertainment offerings,” Sherry Tobak, the senior vice president of sales at Related Companies, said of 15 Hudson Yards in a press release.
One January afternoon, I headed over to Manhattan’s West Side for a sneak peek of 15 Hudson Yards, two months before the neighbourhood was set to open.
The stately entrance made me feel as though I were walking into a high-end hotel.
The lobby was modern and stylish …
… with lots of sleek lines and shiny finishes.
After checking my coat, I was taken up to the 51st floor, where other reporters were awaiting our tour. Most were gazing out the window and taking in the view, and I immediately saw why.
The views of downtown Manhattan, One World Trade Centre, and the Hudson River were unbeatable.
We were gathered in what I later learned was a “club room.” The 51st floor at 15 Hudson Yards is “devoted to entertaining, leisure, and cultural pursuits,” according to press materials — and it quickly became clear that this building was as much about luxury real estate as it was about luxury lifestyle.
The room was decorated with warm colours and accents such as candles and stylish coffee-table books.
The 51st floor includes a club room, two private dining suites, a soundproof screening room, a golf club lounge, wine storage and a tasting room, a business centre, and a coworking space.
The coworking space had a long conference table, comfortable chairs, and, like the club room, floor-to-ceiling windows for optimal city views.
The screening room was full of leather chairs and had a popcorn machine.
When we stepped into one of the private dining rooms, I felt as if I had actually set foot in a glamorous ballroom.
The building has a full-time lifestyle director to help residents with anything from arranging a child’s birthday party at Disney World to organising themed, catered events in one of the private dining rooms.
We passed through other common lounge spaces, all sumptuously decorated.
We came to the chef’s kitchen and wine-tasting room …
… which could seat at least 13 people.
Tobak said most other developers would have likely put such amenities on the lower, less valuable floors of a building. “To be able to sell amenities that are this high up in the air … is something that’s very different than any other building,” she said.
We were led out of the tasting room …
… and into the wine cellars, of which the building has 45 available for residents to buy.
There are 35 wine cellars that hold 192 bottles of wine and cost $US25,000 apiece. Ten hold 1,500 bottles of wine and are available for $US200,000 each.
Next we went down to visit the fitness centre. It was huge, spanning an entire corner of the 50th floor. There were plenty of weight machines and cardio machines.
If my gym had this view of the city, I might be more motivated to work out.
If the gym isn’t your thing, 15 Hudson Yards also has a yoga studio …
… and a massage room, where massage therapists can be brought in for residents’ appointments …
… and where you’ll find complimentary Aesop products.
But the amenity that most impressed me was the 75-foot indoor lap pool overlooking the Hudson River. If I lived here, I would be in it all the time.
After our look at the pool, we went down to the 25th floor to check out a model unit.
The two-bedroom, 2.5-bath condo was designed by Ken Downing, Neiman Marcus’ fashion director.
I wasn’t a big fan of the bold, colourful design choices, but that was just personal taste.
The bedrooms felt a bit small to me — definitely smaller than my room in Brooklyn, in a building that’s far from the same class as 15 Hudson Yards.
Of course, we’re talking prime space in Manhattan — but with a $US4.2 million price tag, the condo could have felt a bit more spacious.
I stepped out of 15 Hudson Yards and was welcomed by a nighttime view of Vessel, Hudson Yards’ climbable art installation. As I headed home, I couldn’t stop thinking of the staggering level of luxury that residents of this swanky new building will enjoy.