A 2,500-square-foot penthouse apartment located in Midtown, Manhattan.




Located at the penthouse level of an apartment tower in Midtown, this 2,500-square-foot residence was converted into a one-bedroom pied-à-terre. The idea for the project pivoted on modulating the apartment’s plan organization, vertical section and architectural surfaces. Surrounded by floor-to-ceiling glass windows, the perimeter of the apartment was wrapped with deep window sills that range in depth from 12 inches to 24 inches. Made of African Mahogany, these window sills were intended to function like an infinity pool that extends the horizon to emphasize a vertical drop, while also providing a space for storage and display. The continuous 8-foot ceiling was raised whenever possible to gain an additional foot of vertical loft space. Soundproofing was added to the walls and ceiling to eliminate the low-level hum of traffic outside. Between rooms, translucent glass doors substituted existing standard-height metal doors.

For the interior design, the strategy involved working with Z. Davis Interiors to create an intimate interior space that floats above the bustling city. To emphasize this quality, the designers introduced motorized grass cloth shades that modulate light in the apartment. Generic lighting elements were also replaced by specific light sources that produce a variable illumination to complement each room individually. The interior palette emphasized natural fibers, restful colors, contemporary furnishings and Far Eastern antique decorative objects, including gilded pages from a Burmese bible which hang ceremoniously above the master bed. Throughout the rest of the apartment, raw silk, linen and cotton-and-grass fabrics were used, along with a variety of woods including Macassar Ebony, African Zebrawood, wenge wood and unvarnished teak.