211 East 48th Street

Cool Listings, Historic Homes

Photos via Leslie J. Garfield

New York City’s first modern residence, designed by architect William Lescaze, has hit the market for $4.95 million. Swiss-born New Yorker, Lecaze is credited with pioneering the modernism movement in the United States, beginning with a townhome he designed for himself in 1934. Known as the William Lescaze House, the four-story home at 211 East 48th Street served as the architect’s personal home and studio. The now-landmarked townhouse was totally restored by Sage Realty, who “painstakingly renovated” the street facade to match its original condition.

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Architecture, Features, Historic Homes, History, Midtown East

211 East 48th Street, William Lescaze House, first modern house in NYC, International Style

The William Lescaze House in 1934 via MCNY

These days, it’s pretty common for historic townhouses to receive glassy additions, but this contemporary touch wasn’t always so common. In fact, it wasn’t until 1936 that New York City got its first modern residence—the William Lescaze House. William Lescaze was a Swiss-born, American architect who’s credited with pioneering modernism in America. Along with his partner, George Howe, he completed the first International Style skyscraper in the country in 1930, the Philadelphia Savings Fund Society (PSFS) Building. Unfortunately, his high-profile career didn’t go much further than this, but he did design several uptown townhouses, one of which was his personal home and office and was the first of its kind in NYC.

Learn about NYC’s First Modern House

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