|The Puck Building and a view of Downtown Manhattan –credit|
Now that the Puck Building is destined for penthouse heaven (or hell, depending on how you feel about the matter), we’ll take a moment to reflect on the past, present, and future of this almost 130-year-old landmark building in Manhattan’s NoLIta neighborhood.
Named after the early twentieth century satirical magazine, Puck, the 14,000 square foot venue boasts high ceilings and a spacious Grand Ballroom which can easily accommodate 1,000 or more people for a party, or 500 for a seated wedding reception. The Skylight Ballroom on the seventh floor seats up to 250 guests.
|An up-close look at the Puck Building–-credit|
Designated a landmark by the New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission in 1983, the Puck Building has long been considered one of Downtown’s treasures. Built in 1885, this architectural gem owned by the Kushner realm, is an example of the Romanesque Revival style. Despite several tug-of-war rounds with the Landmark Preservation Commission, Jared Kushner –– also owner of The New York Observer –– received approval to move forward with the construction of five penthouses on the eighth and ninth floors as well as a sixth apartment on the roof, which when complete, will range in price from $21 million to $60 million.
|The main entrance to the Puck–credit|
Eight years in planning, the six elaborate penthouse condos will feature fluted iron columns and brick barrel ceilings, both elements in the original Puck masterpiece. The first penthouse is finished and on the market for a whopping $21 million; the sprawling 4,895 square foot residence includes three bedrooms, four and a half baths, and a 1,600-square-foot master suite. That’s one large walk-in shower.
Years before the Puck Building became a profitable endeavor, the historic structure played supporting roles in film and television. The exterior of the building was featured as the workplace of interior designer Grace Adler in the popular sitcom, Will & Grace; Puck was also the location of the black-tie party in the 1991 novel, American Psycho. You may remember the landmark from the last scene of The January Man, starring Kevin Kline; both interior and exterior shots were filmed at the Puck. Seinfeld featured the Puck as a bookstore in one episode in which Jerry catches Uncle Leo shoplifting. And of course, we can’t forget Billy Crystal’s “I love you” spiel, as he wooed Meg Ryan’s character at the end of the 1989 film, When Harry Met Sally. This famous New Year’s Eve scene was set inside the Puck.
|Grace Adler’s design studio was inside the Puck Building. That’s a mighty nice office.–credit|
|We all remember this line, don’t we?|
Aside from office and event spaces, in 2011, a 39,000 square foot REI opened as the first retailer inside the landmark building, occupying three floors.
The next time you visit this once-was-cool-but-now-exclusive address, pay special attention to the rather plump, mischievous-looking Puck sculpture–– a character from Shakespeare’s Midsummer Night’s Dream –– perched above the main entrance on Lafayette Street. The same four-foot gilded statue stands on the building at the northeast corner at East Houston and Mulberry Street, as well.
|Long live Puck –credit|