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Sandro Rosell
FC Barcelona President
Thursday, September 21, 2017

The lobby of the Henry Hall building gets the concept of its interior from the uniquely pristine design of a hotel lobby 

The New York Times recently featured an article that described the design prowess of an Eric Birnbaum, a partner at Imperial Companies. Birnbaum’s latest project is the Henry Hall, a residential 225-unit building located at 515 West 38th Street. Birnbaum told the Times that “In the residential space, there’s been a real lack of creativity and ingenuity. It’s very staid and institutional, very cookie cutter.” He said of the project that “We said ‘let’s create liveliness and a place that you really want to be in our common areas.”

The concept is to make the lobby of a residential space open to the public. The lobby of the hotel will include a lounge area complete with a fully stacked bar. 

The concept for the lobby will be realized by a talented group of individuals, starting from interior designer Ken Fulk, Delicious Hospitality group a company that is behind some of Manhattan’s finest restaurants and finally, BKSK architects. 

Fulk spoke to the Times about the concept for the building’s design “A lot of buildings try so desperately to be perfectly tasteful that they feel a bit antiseptic.” The lobby of Henry Hall by contrast in Fulk’s words “feels more like your cool friend’s grand living room than the lobby to another rental building in Manhattan.” 

The design of the lobby is a mix between traditional and modern, with plants thrown in between to make one feel that he or she is entering his classical study with décor eclectic enough that you may feel that you are trapped within several time periods at once. The floor is made of three distinct types of marble, a custom chandelier with 24 cut crystal globes to adorn it, teak wall paneling with brass accent; an installation of old oil paintings, tribal rugs and vintage furniture. 

On the lower level of the space, you find amenities such as a gym as well as a music room equipped with drums, guitar amplifiers, and recording equipment. 

The outside of the 33 story building will maintain its traditionally worn façade. Julie Nelson, a partner of BKSK architects described the anticipated underdressed look of the building’s exterior to the Times  “It’s north  of Hudson Yards, but still in that satellite of new development that tends to be all glass…Eric really wanted something that thought about the history of the neighborhood before that development-a little more of the grittiness.” 

Twenty percent of the building's units will consist of affordable housing. The leasing of the apartments began last month. The studios and one bedroom will start at $3,200 and $4,200 respectively There are 25 two bedrooms, starting at $6,400 monthly.

By: Kristina Stukalenko