The Return of Golden Age Design
“Obviously, it’s not an Art Deco building in the sense that the Chrysler Building is, but it’s these little touches that make the building interesting,” said Art Hooper, the president of Ceruzzi Properties, who credited the company’s founder, Louis Ceruzzi Jr., with setting the design direction before his death in 2017.
“He would never build just a plain glass cube,” Mr. Hooper said. “He wanted to dress it up.”
The Centrale’s Art Deco flair makes sense, said Bertrand Buchin, an agent with Douglas Elliman, which is handling sales of the 124 units, priced from about $1.7 million to over $10 million, because the tower has immediate views of the Chrysler Building to the south, and the General Electric Building to the north.
“First, people have to like the apartment, the amenities, the views, the location and everything else,” Mr. Buchin said. But the hints of Art Deco, he added, are “the icing on the cake.”
In NoMad, the Rockefeller Group, of Rockefeller Center fame, is playing up its Jazz Age chops at Rose Hill, a condo designed by CetraRuddy at 30 East 29th Street with 123 units priced from about $1.2 million to $12 million.
The exterior there will feature vertical bands of bronze-colored metal with a chevron pattern and a dramatically up-lit crown. Inside, apartments will be completed with materials meant to project warmth and texture, including rusticated wood floors and master bathrooms with dark marble floors, walnut-and-bronze vanities and aged brass fittings. The marketing materials, meanwhile, include a typeface that resembles neon lettering, a video with a brassy jazz tune and drawings that recall Work Projects Administration posters from the 1930s.
John Cetra, a founding principal of CetraRuddy, said his firm arrived at the building’s design after mulling over a key question: “How does it relate to this city called Gotham, which has a very clear style, a sort of grittiness and an attitude?”
The answer the architects came up with has appealed to buyers like Akash Gupta, who is in contract to buy a two-bedroom, two-bathroom apartment at Rose Hill after looking at numerous developments in the neighborhood.