Downtown By Starck

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15 Broad Street, New York City

Downtown By Starck

Downtown By Starck in the Financial District of Manhattan
Building Information
Developer Shaya Boymelgreen and Africa Israel International Investments
Architect Trowbridge & Livingston (original), Philippe Starck (Conversion)
Management Company FirstService Residential
Number of Units 383
Number of Floors 42
Year Built 1928
Construction Method Concrete
Type of Roof IRMA
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15 Broad Street, New York City
Distance to Public Transit 43 nearby routes
Region New York City
Municipality New York City
Zoning C5 - 5
Title of Land Condominium



Downtown by Starck was the first luxury residential building to open in the Financial District, and led the boom of luxury developments in the heart of Wall Street. The conversion from office space to condominiums was undertaken by flamboyant French architect Philippe Starck, who publicly declared that the residences would become a paradise among the hell of Wall Street. Subsequently, the conversion project garnered much press for the luxurious and outlandish amenities, with some dubbing the project the Downtown Insanity Palace, a moniker that the residents themselves are known to use.

Today, Downtown by Starck remains one of the top luxury residential buildings in the Financial District, and has attracted celebrities, financiers, and notably many families, no doubt drawn by the area’s reputation as having the lowest crime rate in all of Manhattan.[1]


Downtown by Starck is located at 15 Broad Street, sitting directly across the street from the New York Stock Exchange. Located in the heart of Wall Street in the Financial District of Manhattan, the building is close to many landmarks and points of interest in New York City’s long and storied history. Home to many of New York’s major financial institutions, the Financial District is also home to the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, the New York City Police Museum, and the Museum of American Finance.

Nearby in Battery Park City is the Museum of Jewish Heritage, the Skyscraper Museum, and the World Financial Center. The Financial District is also home to the Federal Hall National Memorial, which is the site where George Washington gave his first inaugural speech as the first President of the United States. The site is also a commemoration of the area’s historical significance as the location of the first United States Capitol, before being moved to Washington D.C.[2]

With a walk score and transit score of 100 out of 100, residents of Downtown by Starck do not require a car to complete their daily errands, as the building is close to an abundance of shops, restaurants, home services, and transit options.[3]


In 1914, 23 Wall Street opened on the corner of Wall Street and Broad Street in downtown Manhattan as the headquarters for JP Morgan. In 1928, a 42 story building was built next door at 15 Broad Street to be the headquarters for the Equitable Trust Company. Both of these buildings were designed by Trowbridge & Livingston in the Neoclassical style of architecture, and 1953, JP Morgan bought the larger building at 15 Broad Street and ultimately combined the two into one building in 1960, with the alteration design being done by Rogers & Bergun.

A proposal was put forth in 1998 by the New York Stock Exchange to demolish all of the buildings on the block, except for 23 Wall Street due to its landmarked status in 1966, and build one 900 foot tower designed by Skidmore, Owings & Merrill in their place. This plan was scrapped after the September 11th terrorist attacks, and in 2003 the two buildings were bought for $100 million by Africa Israel International Investments, led by Shaya Boymelgreen, who commissioned Philippe Starck to design the building’s conversion into luxury residences. This conversion began in 2004 and was completed in 2007.[4]

Layout and Features

Downtown by Starck consists of the five story building at 23 Wall Street and the 42 story tower at 15 Broad Street, and contained at total of 382 units at the time of the building’s opening. The roof of 23 Wall Street has been turned into a lavish 5,000 square foot roof deck that is accessible for all residents, and features a reflecting pool, trees, seating areas, and gorgeous views of the New York Stock Exchange and the rest of the Financial District.

Inside the lobby of the building, residents are greeted by a 1,900 piece Swarovski crystal Louis XV chandelier. News of this chandelier helped fuel the building’s nickname of the Downtown Insanity Palace when it was learned that the chandelier would be outfitted with hundreds of tiny plasma screens that broadcast the images of residents onto the chandelier as they walk by.

Apartments within the building range in size from studios to 23 room penthouse suites. All units feature 11 foot ceilings, maple hardwood flooring, and oversized windows. The kitchens are outfitted with Bosch appliances, marble countertops, and gloss lacque cabinetry. The bathrooms feature Thassos marble finishings, Duravit soaking tubs, Hansgrohe fixtures, and dual sinks.[5]

Floor Plans

With over 280 floor plans available, a selection is available.


Downtown by Starck Provides:

  • A staff of around the clock doormen
  • Concierge service
  • Valet parking
  • Dry cleaning, laundry, and housekeeping services
  • Fitness center, along with a lap pool, a yoga/dance studio, and basketball and squash courts
  • Screening room
  • Bowling alley
  • Business center
  • Sports lounge
  • Children’s playroom
  • The building is also noted for the 5,000 square foot roof deck that sits on top of 23 Wall Street, offering spectacular views of the Financial District.[6]

The white glove amenities at Downtown by Starck are managed by Cooper Square Realty.[7]


Downtown By Starck Bylaws
Rentals Yes
Pets Yes
Age No

  • This building allows pets
  • Rentals, sublets, and pied-a-terre are permitted
  • There are no age restrictions for ownership

Downtown By Starck is managed by FirstService Residential: (212) 634-8900.


Built in 1928, this building is a product of its time and therefore, is not designated as a green building.

Residents can help to improve its sustainability by participating in New York City’s recycling programs and installing more energy efficient appliances and materials when updating and/or renovating their apartments.[8]


  • The Louis XV chandelier that hangs in the lobby is made from 1,900 pieces of Swarovski crystal that came from Austria-Hungary before World War I. JP Morgan donated the chandelier to the building’s conversion project on the condition that it be displayed publicly.[9]
  • In 2011, four members of the condo board and several other residents filed a $20 million lawsuit against developer Shaya Boymelgreen and Africa Israel International Investments, claiming Boymelgreen did not follow through on all promises made to buyers, and that the shoddy construction work on the apartments have left residents with water leaks, poor insulation and fireproofing, a movie theater that is unusable, bad smells, and several building code violations. The lawsuit also claimed that Boymelgreen deliberately did not seek out a Certificate of Occupancy in order to maintain control of the condo board, despite his lack of ownership within the building.
  • Former tenants of this building include Natalie Portman, Mariah Carey, Adam Sender, and Claude Grunitzky.[10]
  • The building has garnered the nickname the Downtown Insanity Palace, a moniker used by the residents themselves.[11]
  • The bowling alley was once the site of a shooting range for the security guards of the bank.
  • Philippe Starck is quoted as describing his project as having “honesty, respect, tenderness, surrealism, poetry, surprise, vision - which have no value on the other side of the street”, referring to the New York Stock Exchange and Wall Street in general.[12]


  1. City Realty - Review
  2. Walk Score
  3. Walk Score
  4. City Realty
  5. New Construction Manhattan
  6. Street Easy
  7. New Construction Manhattan
  8. Manhattan Scout
  9. New York Times
  10. New York Post
  11. Curbed NY
  12. City Realty - Review

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