On August 22, 1950, what was then known as the United States Lawn Tennis Association (USLTA) accepted Harlem’s Althea Gibson into their annual championship at Forest Hills, New York (the precursor to the U.S. Open). The spot on the championship roster made Gibson the first African-American athlete to compete in a U.S. national tennis competition, launching a storied career in which she won a whopping 16 Grand Slams, including the 1956 French Open where she became the first person of color to win such a title.
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The Staten Island enclave of Emerson Hill is one of the borough’s most sought after thanks to tree-lined, winding roads, its secluded hill-top location offering panoramic views of New York Harbor, and, an impressive collection of just about 100 grand, historic estates. One such residence, a Tudor manor house located at 2 Emerson Drive, is currently on the market for $2,995,000 (h/t CIRCA). At an impressive, 5,000 square feet, the home is full of period details such as spider web stained glass, moldings and paneling galore, hand-carved fireplace mantles, and beamed ceilings. Plus, outside there’s a large in-ground pool and a Gothic greenhouse, all surrounded by beautiful gardens.
520 West 28th Street via Zaha Hadid Architects
Just last month, closings began on Zaha Hadid’s 520 West 28th Street, a structure 6sqft crowned as Building of the Year in 2016. Now, rental apartments at the luxury residential building have officially hit the market (h/t Curbed NY). The late architect’s signature curved and organic architectural style is complemented with interiors like a marble-clad kitchen island, glass walls and energy-efficient lighting. In total, the building has 39 units, with three currently on the rental market: Units No. 31, No. 17 and No. 18. The three units range from $15,000 per month to $22,500 per month.
The Cornelius Vanderbilt II Mansion on 57th Street and 5th Avenue, now demolished. Photo via A.D. White Architectural Photographs, Cornell University Library.
New York City’s Fifth Avenue has always been pretty special, although you’d probably never guess that it began with a rather ordinary and functional name: Middle Road. Like the 1811 Commissioner’s Plan for Manhattan, which laid out the city’s future expansion in a rational manner, Middle Road was part of an earlier real estate plan by the City Council. As its name suggests, Middle Road was situated in the middle of a large land parcel that was sold by the council in 1785 to raise municipal funds for new newly established nation. Initially, it was the only road to provide access to this yet-undeveloped portion of Manhattan, but two additional roads were built later (eventually becoming Park Avenue and Sixth Avenue).
The steady northwards march of upscale residences, and the retail to match, has its origins where Fifth Avenue literally begins: in the mansions on Washington Square Park. Madison Square was next, but it would take a combination of real-estate clairvoyance and social standing to firmly establish Fifth Avenue as the center of society.
NY Waterway Ferry via Wikimedia
As 6sqft reported in April, NY Waterway launched an additional ferry route running from Hoboken to Midtown Manhattan in response to a train derailment and delays at Penn Station. And since Amtrak closed a few tracks for repairs, more commuters have opted to take the scenic ferry as an alternative. While the eight-minute ride was normally only available during transit crisis, it will become a permanent transit option on Sept. 5. And although the ferry is perhaps a quicker and more scenic alternative, it comes with a steep price of $274.50 per month, according to the Wall Street Journal.
Applications are currently being accepted for the second phase of affordable apartments at 555 Tenth Avenue and 41st Street in booming Hudson Yards on Manhttan’s West Side. Extell Development’s luxurious 610-foot-tall, the mixed-use tower includes 56 stories and spans 725,000 square feet. The amenities seem endless, with residential access to the building’s 24-hour fitness center with a yoga studio, indoor pool, outdoor rooftop pool, outdoor landscaped space, a bowling alley and a putting green. New Yorkers earning 40 and 120 percent of the area median income can apply for units ranging from $613 per month studios to $2,875 three-bedrooms.
This 19th century carriage house was utterly transformed a few years back into a modern apartment at 433 Waverly Avenue in Clinton Hill. Spanning 1,000 square feet on the first floor, the unit includes one-and-a-half bedrooms, an office, private garden, and parking space. The reno brought tons of chic, luxurious details, from salvaged doors to limestone shelving. And now it’s asking $5,250 a month.
Statue of Dr. J. Marion Sims in Central Park. Image: Wikimedia Commons.
As protest and debate sweep the nation over the toppling of statues, centered around well-known Confederate names like Robert E. Lee and Stonewall Jackson, here in New York City a lesser-known monument to medicine is in the spotlight for its offensive nature. The New York Times reports that Manhattan Community Board 11 is calling upon the city to remove an East Harlem statue of a white, southern doctor, Dr. James Marion Sims. Regarded as the father of modern gynecology, Sims achieved his success by performing experiments on slaves without consent and without anesthesia.
Photo of the Central Park Conservancy Film Festival via Shinya Suzuki’s Flickr
Celebrate the end of summer with the 2017 Central Park Conservancy Film Festival, which kicks off Monday night with the showing of the 2014 remake of “Annie.” In addition to Central Park screenings, the film festival will include free outdoor screenings in Harlem’s Marcus Garvey Park and Jacob Riis Park in the Rockaways. This year’s lineup features movies filmed in New York, including “The Wiz,” The Great Gatsby,” and “The Godfather.” All of the movie screenings are free to attend and tickets are not necessary.
A couple of years ago, 6sqft featured the notable design of this contemporary Montauk getaway just steps from a private ocean beach. The owners worked with Berg Design Architecture to create a lofty home on land they purchased for $970,000 in 2013. The result was an ideal summer retreat that’s also cozy and warm in winter. In “upside down” house fashion, the majority of the home’s bedrooms are on its guest-friendly lower level with easy access to the pool, and its entertaining spaces are upstairs along with the ocean views (h/t Wall Street Journal). The home is now on the market for $6,495,000.