By Sarah Trefethen
Just blocks from City Hall, the corner of Broadway and Leonard Street does not immediately strike passersby as a residential neighborhood.
But the brains behind Italian developers Bizzi & Partners are sure that’s about to change.
“We’re a big believer in trying to get there first,” said Steven Della Salla, managing principal at Bizzi. “We definitely believe that whole area is going to come together in very short order.”
The developer has had success with this approach before. Their previous Manhattan development, at 400 Fifth Avenue, was an early success for the Midtown South residential market. That earned the Douglas Elliman Development sales team of Andrew Anderson and Gail Sankarsingh the groups’ award for highest volume of sales last year.
“Everyone said, ‘no one is on 35th Street,’ “ Della Salla recalled.
The new project, at 101 Leonard Street, is a conversion of a 12-story pre-war office building, dubbed The Leonard.
Anderson and Sankarsingh have been recruited again to handle sales, which started last month.
Bizzi paid $53 million for the office building at 350 Broadway late last year and extensive renovations are under way.
The planned 66 units are one- to three- bedroom residences ranging from 835 to 1,963 s/f, and a collection of three- and four-bedroom penthouses starting at 2,666 s/f. Two of the penthouses have been allotted a section of the building’s roof as private terraces. The southwest corner is set aside as a public deck for the rest of the building to use.
Most units have 10.5-foot ceilings, and the three lofts on the first floor feature of whopping 15 feet of overhead clearance. The original double-hung windows are being replaced with single panes of glass, to create single portals of almost seven feet high by 3 feet wide.
For now, potential buyers can get a taste of the finished project by visiting a mock apartment in what will eventually be a retail space on the building’s first floor.
While the space does not reflect any of the 12 floor plans on offer, it does show of the elegant finishes that will be installed in the apartments, from Appalachian oak flooring to quartzite countertops, deep-basin sinks, professional-quality Miele cooktops and top-of-the-line Energy STAR appliances, including Miele and Liebherr.
The master baths are appointed with wood and limestone, soaking tubs, frameless glass showers, Grohe fixtures and custom double vanities.
In addition to the rooftop, shared amenities include a fitness center, children’s’ playroom, bicycle storage and a refrigerated package room. The lobby will feature wood-paneled columns and two pendant chandeliers hanging from those 15-foot ceilings as well as 24-hour attendance.
Outside the building, the traditionally daytime neighborhood of Northeast Tribeca is taking on a more residential feel.
Chef Michael White’s newest venture, The Butterfly, a supper club and cocktail bar, opened this month at 225 West Broadway, and a collection of niche health and wellness spas, such as Aqua Cyling Studio and Aire Ancient Baths, have also opened in the neighborhood.
Units at The Leonard start at $1.3 million, and one 4-bedroom penthouse is listed for $5.5 million.