Club at Turtle Bay

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236 East 47th Street, New York City, NY

Club at Turtle Bay

The Club at Turtle Bay in Midtown Manhattan
Building Information
Developer Magma Equities Co., and the Hakimian Organization
Architect Liebman Liebman PC
Management Company Halstead Management Company
Number of Units 173
Number of Floors 40
Year Built 1988
Construction Method Concrete
Type of Roof IRMA
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236 East 47th Street, New York City, NY
Distance to Public Transit Less than one block
Region New York City
Municipality New York City
Zoning R10
Title of Land Condominium



Cornelius Vanderbilt II
Today, the Vanderbilt YMCA located at 224 East 47th Street is a full service facility, offering local residents, families, and visitors a wide range of recreational and community services and programs. However, this is quite the contrast from the building's original incarnation when it opened in 1932. Back then, the building was called the Railroad YMCA, and was the fourth in a line of buildings that served as the location for this particular branch of the YMCA.

Originally located in the basement of Grand Central Terminal, the Railway YMCA was opened to house the railway workers that passed through New York City. The popularity of this branch grew so quickly that its membership quickly outgrew this location, as well as two other subsequent buildings before the current building was constructed in 1931 and opened in 1932.

In 1972, the Railroad YMCA was officially named the Vanderbilt YMCA and the building continues to operate to this day. The name change from the Railroad YMCA to the Vanderbilt YMCA was in recognition of the many contributions that the Vanderbilt family had given to both that particular branch of the YMCA, as well as the organization as whole.

When the Railroad YMCA was founded in its original location in the basement of Grand Central Station, it was reported that Cornelius Vanderbilt II would personally led the Sunday morning Bible classes for the railroad workers and their families.[1]

When plans for the Club at Turtle Bay condominium building were proposed in the mid to late 1980s, these plans took into consideration the YMCA as the condo’s would be neighbor, and the project came into being through the purchase of the YMCA’s air rights. As a result, the Club at Turtle Bay not only protrudes over the YMCA, but the YMCA has now expanded into the first five floors of the Club at Turtle Bay, as well as using space in the building’s basement levels.


The United Nations in Turtle Bay

The Club at Turtle Bay is a mid-block condominium that is located appropriately enough, in the neighborhood of Turtle Bay in Midtown Manhattan. Named after a 17th century English farm that stood on the present day location of this area, Turtle Bay has undergone enormous transformation over the years, from quiet residential neighborhood, to commercial hub, to neglect and decay, and back again to a quiet residential neighborhood. This revitalization was in large part spurred by the development of the United Nations in the area between 1948 and 1952, a move that brought much glamour and affluence into the neighborhood.

Once known for the residential townhouses that lined the streets, Turtle Bay has made a name for itself in recent decades with the construction of such luxury condominium buildings such as Trump World Tower, 100 United Nations Plaza, the Dag Hammarskjold Tower, and the Alexander. [2]

The Club at Turtle Bay is within walking distance of an abundance of food and retail outlets, and residents do not require a car to complete their daily errands. Additionally, there are over 60 nearby transit routes from which to access the rest of New York City, including Grand Central Terminal, which is a mere 10 minutes walk away.[3]


The Club at Turtle Bay was developed in partnership with Magma Equities Co., and the Hakimian Organization, the later of which has been involved with other residential projects in New York such as 75 Wall Street, the Chelsea Grande, and 184 Lexington Avenue.

They brought in the architectural firm of Liebman Liebman PC to provide the design of the building, a firm that was later renamed The Liebman Melting Partnership before merging with Perkins Eastman in 2007.

Construction on this project was completed in 1988 and the building was opened shortly thereafter. In order to execute the Modernist architectural design, the developers were required to purchase the air rights of the neighboring YMCA building.[4]

Layout and Features

The Club at Turtle Bay stands 40 stories tall, and was designed specifically to compliment the heights of its neighboring buildings. The tower sits on limestone clad base before rising up into a tower that is dark red in color, and is chamfered on the northwest corner. The exterior facade features a consistent fenestration pattern and the apartments on the western side have balconies that protrude out over the YCMA, thus necessitating the purchase of the air rights of this building. [5]

Apartments in the Club at Turtle Bay range in size from studios to four bedroom units, but due to the age of this building, the features, appliances, and finishes of each apartment will vary from unit to unit depending on the renovations undertaken by individual owners. Generally, the apartments feature oversized windows, hardwood flooring, granite counter tops, high ceilings, marble bathrooms, glass showers, and soaking tubs. Select units within this building are duplexes.[6]

Floor Plans

A selection of floor plans is presented.


  • 24 hour doorman
  • Concierge services
  • Live in superintendent
  • Sky Lounge in Penthouse
  • Sun deck on the roof
  • Fitness center
  • Pool
  • Storage facilities
  • Laundry facilities[7]


Club at Turtle Bay Bylaws
Rentals Yes
Pets Yes
Age No

  • This building allows rentals and live-work apartments.
  • There are no age restrictions in this building.
  • This building is pet friendly, although there are some restrictions on dogs.
  • This building allows in suite laundry.
  • This building allows Diplomatic purchasing.



To date the Club at Turtle Bay has not received any LEED certifications, and therefore it is not designated as a green building. Should residents wish to help improve their building’s overall sustainability, there are small measures that can be undertaken, including:

  • Using environmentally friendly household products
  • Updating their appliances to energy efficient models
  • Using sustainable products when undergoing renovations
  • Making use of New York City’s recycling programs
  • Using public transit and walking instead of using a car will reduce their carbon footprint


  • This building has been listed as one of the top 10 condominium buildings in the area surrounding the United Nations. [9]
  • Just around the corner from this building at Third Avenue and East 46th Street was the site of the army enrollment office that triggered the New York Draft Riots on July 13th, 1863. The riots lasted for three days, killing 120 people and injuring over 2,000. [10]
  • Turtle Bay is home to numerous diplomatic missions to the United Nations, including those of Argentina, Australia, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Denmark, Egypt, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Iceland, Hungary, Italy, Libya, Mexico, New Zealand, North Korea, Turkey, and Saudi Arabia.


  1. YMCA Archive
  2. Turtle Bay - Manhattan
  3. Walk Score
  4. Emporis
  5. City Realty
  6. New Construction Manhattan
  7. The Hakimian Organization
  8. Streeteasy
  9. City Realty
  10. New York Draft Riots

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