Pining For FiDi
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|As few as three years ago, there weren’t many luxury residential options in the Financial District. Fast forward to 2011, and it’s established itself as a prestigious 24/7 neighborhood, nicknamedFiDi for short. Attraction to the neighborhood has boded well for projects like 20 Pine, a 409-unit conversion from the former Chase Manhattan Bank HQ built in 1928. Now, there are only 32 units left, reports Lori Ordover, owner Africa-Israel USA’s managing director of sales and leasing. AFI purchased the building in ’05, and was confident enough in the neighborhood to put in an extra $15M to finish the building amenities during the recession. The project contains studios to penthouses ranging from $685k to $3.5M.|
|With a new elementary school for 500 students being built nearby, a24-hour supermarket, luxury retail, and myriad restaurant and transportation options, residents are feeling comfortable moving into the neighborhood, Lori says. In fact, one of AFI’s other Downtown projects, The District at 111 Fulton Street, just sold out. Foreignershave been especially attracted to the area, making up 40% of 20 Pine’s residents, while buyers have taken advantage of Lower Manhattan's residential 421-G tax abatement (it has to do with converted buildings, but consult someone with more degrees than us). The owner just hired Warburg Realty as the sales and marketing team for the remaining units. And as a testament to the project, onsite agent Deborah DeMaria lives at 20 Pine, having bought her unit from the blueprints. (We're thinking we're jealous of her commute.)|
|20 Pine is being touted as the first fashion-branded luxury residential development in the US, featuring interiors designed byArmani. The Egyptian-themed architectural elements from the original office building were retained and complemented with contemporary finishes (sphinxes were quite the fashion, given the building went up after King Tut’s tomb was discovered). The developers restored the bank’s 1920s vault doors (above), each weighing 45 tons, and transformed them into works of art that lead to the 60-foot pool and spa. The building also contains three different lounges for eating, reading, and entertainment.|