1 East 62nd Street is one building from Fifth Avenue and Central Park, on a block that retains a most impressive group of turn of the century mansions, some of which are deemed among the finest on the Upper East Side of Manhattan.
Together they create the luminous limestone streetscape opposite 1 East 62nd Street, a 42-foot wide neo-French classic style mansion also in white limestone designed in 1903 by Horace Trumbauer. Another limestone mansion Trumbauer designed for James B. Duke - for whom he also planned Duke University - at 1 East 78 Street is also revered and has been designated a New York City landmark. Trumbauer's extraordinary work was in the Beaux-Arts style but more restrained and less exuberant and with a powerful simplicity that anticipated a more modern concept of elegance.
The house Trumbauer created at 1 East 62nd Street was a superior example of his forward-looking vision.
JOHN R. DREXEL MANSION
The father of the creator of this mansion was Anthony Joseph Drexel, Senior, who founded Drexel, Morgan & Co. in New York in 1871 with JP Morgan as his junior partner at the urging of his father, Junius Spencer Morgan. The company thrived and played a major role in the rise of global finance after the American Civil War. The Drexel fortune then passed to his son and wife, John and Alice Drexel.
To assert their position in society, their first step was to engage Horace Trumbauer to build this impressive mansion in 1903, which would cost $700,000.
It is a 42-foot wide elevated white limestone structure of seven stories. In 1938 it was converted into 12 luxury apartments. For example, the penthouse is 5,190 square feet with 9 rooms and 2 terraces. Ernest Hemingway chose an apartment here as a private refuge for his writing.
Apartment 2A offers the rare opportunity to acquire the front rooms spanning 42 feet on the second floor, arguably the most dramatic floor in any large mansion. The space is amplified by the size of the three huge floor-to-ceiling windows and the constant light that pours into the room. This floor was originally designed to include the ballroom of the mansion.
Upon entering, the space almost feels like an extraordinary movie set, a feeling perhaps augmented by the ceilings, which measure 16 feet 4 inches in height. The massive living room has an extraordinary fireplace. The dining room is open and leads to a kitchen and second bedroom with windows to the west and north, a laundry room and a full bathroom. Curved stairs ascend to a primary bedroom with corner windows to the south and west towards Central Park and a full bathroom. There are 10 closets on the lower level and 13 closets on the upper level.
One can truly say that there is no other apartment like this one in New York - while at the same time the vistas out the windows evoke a vista in Paris.
A remarkable space in a perfect place.
With so few apartments, the building has assembled a superb staff. It is an exceptional pleasure to walk into this lobby, as the 24-hour doormen are so pleasantly cordial and yet skillfully security conscious.