35 XV: Chelsea’s Newest Condominium

35 XV in Chelsea

While New York is becoming increasingly familiar with architectural hybrids where traditional styles sit side by side with distinctively modern design, Alchemy Properties’ newest project may be the most interesting example to date.

Built on the site of a former union hall, the 35 XV condominium at 35 West 15th Street will be a tower of glass and stone, distinguished by a gentle inward slope starting on the 11th floor. Designed by Bruce Fowle and his firm FXFOWLE, 35 XV captures the modern aesthetic through the use of unique angles and glass-curtain walls.

The condominium is Alchemy’s most expensive condo project yet. The property was purchased for $16.6 million, and the air rights from the nearby Xavier High School cost an additional $13.7 million. 

35 XV will tower over Chelsea, a neighborhood mostly made up of low-rises. On their own, the condos would be among the most innovative and experimental of New York’s new condominiums. But the new luxury building doesn’t simply start from the ground up.

When Xavier put their air rights on the market back in 2008, rumors were swirling that Chelsea was about to get a high-rise hotel. After the market crash, the property didn’t return to the market until 2010, at which point Xavier realized they could get more than just air rights from the deal.

As a result, 35 XV sits squarely on a modestly designed five-story base that will serve as an expansion for Xavier High School. Although the contrast between the school and the modern condo building is striking at first glance, the deal worked out perfectly for both sides: the money from the air rights sale covered the cost of Xavier’s new building, and since a school qualifies as a community space, Alchemy was able to build a larger condo.

Those impressed by 35 XV’s innovative architecture should be equally impressed with units themselves, as the interiors are being designed by the renowned Benjamin Noriega-Ortiz. Ortiz has created soothing and sensual designs for the luxury boutique hoteliers Morgans group, along with celebrities like P. Diddy and Lenny Kravitz.

The building will offer one-to-four bedroom apartments, slated anywhere between $1.5 million and $12.6 million. Sales began two months ago, and according to XV’s website, nearly half the units have been sold. The building is scheduled for completion in 2014.