Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Mr. Thomas Hastings' Apartment on the Roof of 52 Vanderbilt Avenue, New York


                        A Group of Distinguished Rooms

  Mr. Thomas Hastings' Apartment on the Roof of 52 Vanderbilt Avenue, Entirely Planned by Himself, Overlooks New York's Picturesque Roof-line from River to River

Photos by Drix Duryea

  The fireplace in the room ABOVE is antique Italian and once belonged to Mr. Stanford White.   The material back of the fireplace is 18th century red velvet, and the rug is Spanish Moresque of the 18th Century.

  The picture BELOW shows the view from Mr. Hastings' apartment over many tall office buildings. In front of the centre window is an old ship model.


Photos by Drix Duryea

Photos by Drix Duryea

  ABOVE is the living room of Mr. Hastings' roof apartment. The walls of this room are plaster in uneven surface in a yellow tone. Much of the woodwork is antique fragments of carved wood: the beams of the hipped roof are concrete cast in rough planks and painted to the tone of the rest of the wood.

  The picture BELOW is the library of Mr. Hastings' office. On all four sides the books go to the ceiling and there are some beautiful bits of old woodwork shown. The furniture as in the rest of the apartment is antique of course, much of it 17th century Italian as well as a Stewart table, an 18th century Italian chair and a quaint Sarvauarola chair against the wall.


Photos by Drix Duryea

  Hastings' penthouse was a later addition to the Vanderbilt Concourse Offices attributed to Architect A. Wallace McCrae. Carrere & Hastings had offices in the building. Previous offices were located HERE and HERE. Thomas Hastings' Long Island country home "Bagatelle" and a earlier home HERE.  John M. Carrere city home was located HERE, "Red Oaks" his summer home HERE.

 Platinum Equity, a private equity firm headquartered in Beverly Hills, Calif., has leased the penthouse floor of 52 Vanderbilt Avenue as the new location for the firm's New York office. In a press release on the lease it is mentioned the "vintage mantel" from Stanford White survives.


Vanderbilt Concourse Offices  Architecture and Building 1915

  The erection of this twenty-story structure in conjunction with the Grand Central improvement is the natural consequence of the neighborhood development caused by the Terminal improvements themselves. This building is essentially an office building and its over-all dimensions, little short of a 100 x 100, provide fourteen large sized offices on a story, although the area may be less sub-divided, to give larger office spaces.

  The connection with the subway and the Grand Central Terminal by the understreet sidewalk is an advantage to the tenants. There are five Otis traction elevators which run from the subway concourse in the basement to the full height of the building. The subway concourse runs through the basement of the building with a street entrance to East 45th street also.

  The mason contractors on the building were the Micwiel Co., Inc., and Clyde R. Place was the consulting engineer. The Reliance Fireproof Door Company did the kalamein work, consisting of the doors, windows and trim. The plain and ornamental plastering was done by T. A. O'Rourke, Inc., and the walls and ceilings are all finished with O'Brien's liquid wall finish. This finish throughout is very plain, as shown in the corridors and offices, but of a surface that is serviceable and easily cleaned. James McCullagh, Inc., held the plumbing contract for the building. There is a public toilet for men on each floor and in addition toilets for women on every third floor.



VANDERBILT CONCOURSE OFFICES ON EAST 45TH STREET, NEW YORK.
 Mason Contractors:  The Micwiel Co., Inc. Warren & Wetmore, Architects. Barrett Specification Materials. Clyde R. Place, Consulting Engineer. Kalamrin Doors, Windows and Trim:   Reliance Fireproof Door Co. Plumbing Contractors:   James McCullagh, Inc. ***NOTE THE ABSENCE OF THE PENTHOUSE***


Looking south from 47th Street - 1935 

VANDERBILT CONCOURSE OFFICES - FIRST FLOOR PLAN

VANDERBILT CONCOURSE OFFICES - SECOND FLOOR PLAN

VANDERBILT CONCOURSE OFFICES - 52 VANDERBILT AVENUE

VANDERBILT CONCOURSE OFFICES.   ELEVATOR HALL.
Plain and Ornamental Plaster;   T. A. O'Rourke, Inc.   Warren & Wetmore, Architects.

VANDERBILT CONCOURSE OFFICES.   ELEVATOR HALL AFTER A RECENT RENOVATION.

VANDERBILT CONCOURSE OFFICES.   ELEVATOR CORRIDOR IN AN UPPER STORY.
O'Brien's Liquid Velvet Wall Finish used on Walls and Ceilings.Stanley Butts

VANDERBILT CONCOURSE OFFICES.  AN INTERIOR OFFICE PARTITION OF GLASS TILE.
Partitions:   Keppler Glaus Constructions, Inc. Bommer Spring Hinges.

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8 comments:

  1. Conde Nast's penthouse apartment at 1040 Park (1924) decorated by Elsie de Wolfe is usually cited as starting the allure for rooftop living. Is the date known for Hasting's wonderful apartment?

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  2. The article itself is from 1926. The office building on which the penthouse sits was completed around 1915. No mention of when the apartment was added to the top. Or if Hastings was the first tenant. However the firm does have a business address for this location(52 Vanderbilt Ave.) going back to at least 1915. Conjecture - Hasting beat Wolfe??? Looking out the window with the ships model - I believe you can see construction going on(wood scaffolding perhaps) at Grand Central. That would date the penthouse before 1924???

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  3. the construction through the window appears to be the tower of the Helmsley Building since this penthouse is located at 45th and Vanderbilt, it would look directly east at the south-west corner of the Helmsley Building. That is however one magnificent penthouse and an early mixed use building of offices and apartment? NYarch

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  4. I would generally fold to anyone with NY in their name:) - however after further checking - the window faces north to the Roosevelt Hotel under construction - which further confirms Hastings beating Wolfe - hotel didn't open until 1924. The twin spires of St. Patrick can been seen to the left in the background. The three windows with the model are seen from the outside in the 1935 photo - plus the chimney from the fireplace is on the north wall?

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  5. I need to get out and about more. I presumed the spires were the synagogue on Lexington Ave in the lower 50's but you're correct. Still amazing views were had in the early days before the blocks filled up with highrises. Nyarch

    Great blog BTW

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  6. Thanks for the comment. "River to River" - sunrises to sunsets - amazing views indeed!

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  7. The Hastings penthouse is just plain too marvelous.

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