Cipriani Residences

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55 Wall Street, New York City

Cipriani Residences
CiprianiCLubResidences-NYC-55WallStreet.jpg

Cipriani Residences exhibit pre-war elegance with modern day finishes
Building Information
Developer Merchants' Exchange
Architect Isaiah Rogers
Number of Units 106
Number of Floors 5
Year Built 1842
Construction Method Granite
Type of Roof Dome
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55 Wall Street, New York City
Distance to Public Transit Less than one block
Region New York City
Municipality New York City
Zoning C5 - 5
Title of Land Condominium


Contents

Background

Busy Wall Street people know that the Cipriani Club Residences are the pinnacle of luxury (pronounced - "Chip-ree-an-ee"). This distinctive landmark building is easily recognized by its 2 tiers of columns. The lower set of 16 massive Ionic columns were each hewn from a single block of Quincy Granite. With a later expansion, a second layer of Corinthian columns was added. A massive domed roof tops this structure presenting a huge 60 foot high interior hall finished with gray marble floors and walls.

This building opened in 1842 after a 6 year construction. It was the Merchants' Exchange replacing the previous exchange which burnt in the great fire of New York in 1835. This Greek Revival Style building designed by Isaiah Rogers, later saw life as the New York Stock Exchange and then as the United States Custom House starting in 1862.

When the Customs House moved out in 1907, the National City Bank, headed by President James Stillman, bought the building from the federal government and it became their headquarters. At this time, the building was expanded adding 4 more floors and the aforementioned Corinthian columns.

Recently renovated by the Cipriani S.A. empire of restaurants and ballrooms, the main former banking hall has become one of the most elegant ballrooms in the world. The remainder of the building is now condominium apartments.


Location

Cipriani Residences is located in the heart of the financial district at 55 Wall Street, in Lower Manhattan. Nestled amid towering skyscrapers, the Cipriani Residences strongly retains its identity through shear weight of elegance and history. There are just four short blocks to the East River where residents can use water transit services, or the Helicopter Flight services instead. Nearby Pearl Street offers easy access to the Brooklyn Bridge and a little further on, the Manhattan Bridge.

The number 2 and 3 subway lines are around the corner connecting residents with other parts of the city quickly. Restaurants, apart from Cipriani Club 55, abound. Groceries are readily available if residents do not wish to use the room services. Museums, schools, parks and plazas are all within a half mile of the Cipriani Residences. Overall, a Walkscore of 100 is easily achieved.

Construction

The original 6 year construction from 1836 to 1842 constructed a beautiful 4 story building intended for financial and government use. The building served this purpose for more than a century. During its expansion from 1907 to 1910, four more stories were added and the lobby became a huge banking hall with a domed ceiling meant to inspire confidence and trust with bank customers. Even back then, the 12,000 square foot hall was used as an event space and a ballroom, as it is today.

Many renovations have occurred in 55 Wall Street over the decades. From becoming a hotel, to well appointed full service condominiums, much has changed. Even though the shell of the building was designated a New York City Landmark 1965 and achieved National Historic Landmark status in 1978, the interiors are modern and opulent. Marble finishes and hardwood floors are everywhere. Giuseppe Cipriani worked with Sidney Kimmel, the head of Regent Internatioanl Hotels, to transform the Cipriani brand into a complete lifestyle.

Layout and Features

The apartments are exquisitely furnished and aesthically appointed apartments that are ready to occupy. Buyers can choose from three design styles for the fully furnished units, right down to the linens, glassware, and toaster. A library with 20,000 volumes is available and a screening room.

The 24 hour doorman and lobby attendant welcome residents. A rooftop garden, a landscaped courtyard, and a fitness center are featured. Residents can use the services of a butler, housekeeping, cleaning and laundering, personal shopping, delivery services, postal and messenger services, grocery shopping, flower service, dog sitting and animal grooming, child care, even packing and unpacking. The long list of amenities also includes a two year membership in the Cipriani Club, a hair salon and barber shop, a library, and access to a world class concierge.

Floor Plans

From its conversion from a 144 room hotel to a 106 unit condominium, each floor plan is varied. A very small selection is shown here:

Amenities

Cipriani residents have numerous amenities for their use. Some views are presented here:

Bylaws

Rentals of the units are definitely allowed and encouraged. The dog-sitting and pet grooming services assure pets are allowed. Nearby schools and child care services at the Cipriani Residences encourage family life. Some may consider the fact that there are no balconies a set back, but with the food services available within the residence, its not likely you would want to barbecue.

Cipriani Residences Bylaws
Rentals Yes
Pets Yes
Age No
Barbecues No


Sustainability

In 1842, the main theme in a building was to inspire awe and respect through the grandeur of space. The huge banking hall turned ballroom, the imposing pillers describing strength and hopefully, trust. A sustainable, green building was probably not on the designers' minds. Longevity, perhaps, but not environmental issues.

Renovations over the decades into modern, comfortable living spaces will assure that most tenants and the most recent designers will have energy conservation ideas at hand. Energy compliant appliances, window glazing, modern heating and cooling systems have all been fitted into Cipriani Residences. The roof top garden and landscaped courtyard is another effort to present green space to residents. The easy walk ability of the neighborhood also helps to lower an individual's carbon footprint.

Trivia

  • In popular culture, the building was the location for the finale of Jonathan Demme's 2004 film The Manchurian Candidate. President Bush delivered a speech in the opulent hall on corporate malfeasance and Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg outlined his vision for Lower Manhattan there.
  • It became a New York City Landmark in 1965 and was later designated a National Historic Landmark building in 1978. In 1998, the building was rebuilt as The Regent Wall Street Hotel with 144 rooms. During the 9/11 attacks, it served as a relief center for rescue workers and local residents. However, the hotel had to close in 2003 due to lack of business following the 9/11 attacks.

References


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