ML - Michigan Avenue

2013 - Issue 5 - September

Michigan Avenue - Niche Media - Michigan Avenue magazine is a luxury lifestyle magazine centered around Chicago’s finest people, events, fashion, health & beauty, fine dining & more!

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Page 147 of 163

HAUTE PROPERTY "Cathedral spaces and dramatic staircases are the most prestigious elements, and the only way to get them is with a duplex." —NANCY JOYCE continued from page 145 marketed by Koenig & Strey broker Nancy Joyce (312-339-4949;, and a three-bedroom, four-bath, two half-bath 7,000-square-foot duplex at 132 East Delaware Place, above the Four Seasons Hotel, marketed by Baird & Warner broker Katherine Malkin (312981-2308; for $12.8 million. "Cathedral spaces and dramatic staircases are the most prestigious decorative elements you can have inside an apartment, and the only way to get them is with a duplex," points out Joyce. Her listing has a sweeping, custom-built French-inspired staircase made of rare burnished butternut—as well as five fireplaces (including a historic mantel from New York's Plaza Hotel), two private balconies, and a 1,000-square-foot terrace, thanks to the fact that it is also a bona fide penthouse atop what was once the venerated Ambassador West Hotel. Malkin's listing, with a grand limestone staircase and soaring, 25-foot-high cathedral ceilings, has been given such a glorious decorative buildout by architects Marvin Herman & Associates and interior designer Juan Pablo Molyneux that it earned a lavish spread in Architectural Digest in 2009. But she sees the duplex as a solution in a tight market. "The problem is that developers stopped developing over the last few years, thanks to the recession, and there are no large, dramatic spaces right now. That's made spacious duplexes even more desirable." Malkin feels so strongly about this that she convinced the powers that be at 77 East Walton Street, officially known as The Residences at 900, to turn the project's last two unsold units, 23 and 24 F, into a 7,000-square-foot duplex listed for $7.4 million. The developers recently paired them together and drew up potential plans for the space that include a grand staircase, of course—and the price includes a $2 million credit toward the build-out. The penthouse was originally the brainchild of publishing magnate Condé Nast. In 1924 he found a co-op being built and "arranged to have the top floor—originally designated as servants' rooms— redesigned to accommodate one of the most astonishing apartments up to that time," notes a New York Times story from 2000. Before that, top floors were considered way too hot, leaky, or hard to reach for luxury living. Duplexes, on the other hand, "date back to the 19th century and are associated with artists who wanted high, light-filled rooms," notes Neil Harris, professor emeritus of history and art history at The University of Chicago and author of Chicago Apartments: A Century of Lakefront Luxury (Acanthus Press, out of print). But by the early 20th century, he says, "They were considered a luxurious way to live. Who wouldn't want to have a house in the sky if they could afford it?" Of course, some lucky souls get it all. Last year, in the most expensive condo sale in Chicago's history, Citadel CEO Kenneth Griffin paid $15 million dollars for the entire 66th floor of the Park Tower at 800 North Michigan Avenue, a floor below his duplexpenthouse on the 67th floor that he bought in 2000 for $6.9 million. New accounts note that he plans on combining the two spaces into a penthouse triplex. Just imagine the staircase he can craft for that. MA CLOCKWISE FROM TOP LEFT: The master bedroom in the duplex at 132 East Delaware Place above the Four Seasons Hotel boasts stunning views of the lake; the kitchen at 1300 North State Parkway, atop the former Ambassador West Hotel; living room at 161 East Chicago Avenue. 146 MICHIGANAVEMAG.COM 145-146_MA_HP_Opener_Sept_13.indd 146 8/7/13 1:07 PM

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