© dbox for CIM Group & Macklowe Properties
When complete in April 2015, 432 Park Avenue will exceed One57’s height by almost 400 feet, but it is also in the running to compete for another sky-high title: the epic price tags on 147 units which appraisers have valued at a total of $2.47 billion. Developers Harry Macklowe and Los Angeles based CIM Group and architect Rafael Viñoly are certainly faced with a project of brave proportions. Harry Macklowe is hardly known for being risk averse, but after a series of well-timed deals amidst current condo-buying frenzy, 432 Park Avenue will soon be at the top of the NYC real estate world.
432 Park Avenue’s hype rose out of its height. From renderings that have been circulating since June, the building literally casts shadows on its neighbors. Judging from Viñoly’s previous designs, strictly right angled concrete and glass facades can become too imposing for small scale residential construction, but for his skyscraper-apartment, material brutality is a necessity and statement. The building’s dominating characteristics are apt considering New York City’s bustling skyscraper construction: it needs to stand out, and both its architecture and amenities achieve that.
Manhattan’s condominiums are experts at concealing luxury behind formidable facades, and 432 Park Avenue is expected to do just that. Unlike One57, the building will not have a hotel; rather, it will feature a private restaurant on the 12th floor with a terrace, a “club unit” complete with a fitness center, pool, whirpool, sauna, steam room, library and screening rooms from floors 12 to 16, 18 wine cellars, 3 retails spaces, and a car drop-off area similar to that of 15 Central Park West. Out of the 128 available units, ranging in size from 1,390 square feet to more than 8,000 square feet for the projected $82.55 million penthouse, CIM developers expects to pre-sell 40 of them followed by four a month beginning in October 2014. The average asking price is currently at $4,500 per square foot, below those at One57; however, units have already undergone a 3% price increase and considering recent enthusiasm over luxury condominium sales, prices can be expected to continue to climb.
Upon its completion in 1930, The Pierre Hotel--432 Park Avenue’s Old World neighbor--boasted unrestricted views of Central Park. This repeated motif in Manhattan condominium amenities still stands, beckoning with increasing fervor as luxury residential apartments compete in a skyline arms race. For Vinoly and many before him, his contribution to the “urban experiment” of New York City hinges on the desire to be part of an exclusive experience, furnished with stature and solitude on top of the rest of the world.