Record Houses: A Modest Little Reno

So many houses in Architectural Record's Record House issue are new construction, second homes, off in the country, and bait for criticism about the extravagance and waste of the rich owning second homes. Thus we were thrilled to see a home that is urban, a renovation and restoration, and at two million bucks, wildly extravagant. Christopher Wren's Christ Church was bombed out in WW2 and is now a roofless rose garden; its tower survived and got into private hands. Architect Nicholas Boyarsky has designed an apartment in it: eleven stories high. Owner Kate Renwick must have great legs, going up and down those stairs all day.

Planning approvals took a long time, no new window openings were allowed, and "the utmost in architectural discretion" was required. The biggest floor plate is 231 square feet, which doesn't leave much room after the stairs and a tiny elevator that starts at the third floor. The kitchen and dining room are near the bottom (no need to lug those groceries too far) bedrooms in the middle and the living room is at the top, with a 49 foot high ceiling. If you have the nerve, there is a ladder up to a belvedere. ::Architectural Record not yet on line.



photographs from Architectural Record, by Helen Binet

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