Upper West Side, Manhattan, New York
What was once a tiny, awkward apartment at the top of a six-story building is now a multilevel, functional home. The existing apartment had only 425 square feet of floor area but a height of over 24 feet. By utilizing this height, we created a flowing, platformed interior while maintaining open, vertical space.
The strategy was to create four stacked and interleaved “living platforms.” First is the living area, then a slightly elevated kitchen with an ultra-compact bath tucked under the stairs. These stairs lead to a platform bedroom with a cantilevered bed hovering over the main living space. Another flight of stairs leads you to the top floor – a roof garden with windows that allows light to cascade through the house.
“All the spaces flow into one another, and the idea of distinct rooms is dissolved.” – Marc Kristal, The New York Times
Every inch of the apartment is put to use, with both sets of stairs featuring built-in storage units like that of Japanese kaidan-dansu. The apartment itself is crafted like a piece of furniture, with hidden and transforming spaces for things and people alike.
Architect: Specht Harpman
Contractor: Cuadro Construction
Photography: Taggart Sorensen