Formal dining, separate kitchens top home buyer wish lists

Broker: “For a certain demographic, they’re a definite selling point”

From left: Kitchen at 737 Park Avenue, dining room at 155 East 79th Street and kitchen at 69 East 86th Street
From left: Kitchen at 737 Park Avenue, dining room at 155 East 79th Street and kitchen at 69 East 86th Street

Open kitchens and dining areas have lately featured prominently among New York City’s poshest apartments. But that is changing as an increasing number of home seekers look for separate kitchens and formal dining rooms, prewar design concepts that are newly en vogue.

The trend is pushed by a plethora of recent new construction in which open floor plans are typical, brokers told the New York Times. With that being the norm, old-style units with dining rooms and kitchens set apart from the main entertaining area are gaining cachet as something different.

“They offer charm, they’re better for entertaining, and you don’t have to see your partner first thing in the morning,” George Case, a Citi Habitats broker who found a Brooklyn apartment for a client who named a separate kitchen as a top must-have, told the Times. “For a certain demographic, they’re a definite selling point.”

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The separate space concept is reemerging with such force that developers are already taking note. The penthouse unit Glenwood’s new condominium at 60 East 86th Street will feature both a formal dining area and an enclosed kitchen, while most of the 60 apartments in Macklowe Properties’ 737 Park Avenue conversion will hold areas geared toward former dining, with special wiring in place to accommodate chandeliers. Anbau Enterprises’ 155 East 79th Street condominium will feature dining rooms in all seven duplexes, and the kitchens can be closed off from the larger entertaining space.

Still other developers and architects are finding a middle ground between open eating and formal dining, offering a new twist dubbed “hybrid kitchens.” These spaces, on display at Adam Gordon and Tavros’ 560 West 24th Street condominium building, can be opened or closed with the use of a so-called pocket door.

“We monitor trends in our buildings, so we know what people request,” Leonard Seinberg, a Douglas Elliman broker who is handling sales at the property, told the Times. “The developer asked us if people wanted opened or enclosed kitchens, and our research showed that people wanted both. This option offers the best of both worlds.” [NYT]Julie Strickland