CityRealty previously reported on the highly anticipated–and visually unique–skyscraper rising at 180 East 88th Street. Developers DDG want the 50-story condominium tower to stand apart from the sea of glass towers rising on the Upper East Side, and renderings show that the building’s design is indeed a breathtaking departure from the average both inside and out, from herringbone-patterned brickwork to each unit’s herringbone floors imported from Austria. As an example of the project’s unmatched level of individuality and attention to detail, DDG is working with a series of artists, including the renowned stucco artist Jan Hooss, who is creating an intricate plasterwork installation above the fireplace that will anchor the building’s lobby. Based in Stuttgart, Germany, the artist has worked with Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie at Chateau Miraval. DDG CEO Joseph McMillan told CityRealty, “We wanted something unique and different for this building which is why we went with stucco art.”
Art meets architecture at 180 East 88th including an intricate plasterwork installation in the lobby, Mon, October 16, 2017
Image: John Watson via flickr.
Something is in the air at luxury apartment buildings looking for new ways to charm residents. The idea of “aromatizing” building common spaces to entice buyers and renters with seductive scents is gaining popularity among developers, according to The New York Times. A growing number of the city’s rental and condo buildings have begun to infuse their halls with fragrance via building ductwork or standalone scent machines. With any luck, the result will be something far, far away from the smell of your subway stop in August.
With so many high-end and ultra-luxury towers coming to the market, it’s becoming increasingly difficult for developers to stand out in the crowd. While wild amenities have typically dominated as a way to distinguish one’s building, some developers are trying to extend their reach even further by appealing to the artistic sensibilities of the wealthy. As CityRealty writes, for these builders, “Art is no longer an afterthought in real estate. It has become a prominent part of the design process.”
Ahead, Joseph McMillan, CEO of DDG (who are dropping jaws with their Gaudi-inspired XOCO 325), and Mike Green, Art Director at Pandiscio (responsible for bringing the Anish Kapoor sculpture of 56 Leonard to the forefront of the marketing campaign) weigh in on the trend, discussing how and why art enhances real estate development.
In spite of a bristling array of glass spires erupting into our man-made mountain range and a global high-rise boom remodeling world cities into alien, cutting-edge anonymity, Manhattan stubbornly manages to appear tellurian. But Joseph McMillan’s integrated real estate investment and design company DDG has emerged as one firm genuinely committed to nurturing and progressing our architectural zoo of a city. Their past projects–345 Meatpacking, 41 Bond Street, XOCO 325, and 12 Warren– transcend common architectural styles, clad in a unique palette of materials and composed of an uncanny mashup of parts informed by context, nature, and technology.
DDG’s latest exotic specimen comes to the architecturally conservative Upper East Side ‘hood of Yorkville, at 180 East 88th Street (1558-1556 Third Avenue). The 32-story, 521-foot development will not only be the team’s first uptown building, but also their first high-rise. DDG purchased the three-lot parcel from Muss Development for $70 million in 2013, and groundwork earnestly began last spring.
Earlier, we gave you a look at DDG’s rough-cut, bluestone facade at 12 Warren Street in Tribeca, and now, just a few blocks north within the SoHo-Cast Iron Historic District, the team has de-shrouded the skeletal exterior of their upcoming condominium XOCO 325. Rising from a through-block site at 325 West Broadway, the 48,000 square foot development will house 21 light-filled residences upon its completion early next year. DDG picked up the site for $38.5 million in 2012, and in typical fashion, souped up the design with organic and environmentally inspired elements that charmed the Landmarks Preservation Commission.