409 215 CHRYSTIE

215 Chrystie
New York, New York, USA
Project 2012 - 2017, Realization 2014 - 2017

215 Chrystie is located in the Bowery, the rapidly evolving cultural and artistic district in the center of Lower Manhattan. The site sits at the core of the block framed by Houston Street, Stanton Street and the Bowery, deeply recessed from Chrystie Street. A heterogenic mix of buildings that vary significantly in age, use, architectural quality, as well as scale and proportion surround it. Across the road lays Roosevelt Park, a long and narrow stretch of green that is gaining back its recreational use.

The historical and cultural significance of this area is eminent. The Bowery is the city’s oldest thoroughfare; it began as a Native American trail, became a Colonial Farm road, and developed into an elegant and broad boulevard for famous and rich people by the early 1800s. At the end of the 20th century the Bowery had a rich underground culture that was the subject of many artists’ works at that time. Today, the Bowery is a melting pot, an eclectic mix of members of an international community and an indispensable resource of American history and culture.

When we became involved with the project, the framework for the site had already been established. The building’s mass and volume had been negotiated with the city and our task was to design a hotel with a residential component within strictly defined criteria.

Our idea was to stack these two very distinct typologies on top of each other, on one hand to express their difference, while on the other to unify them within the same building skeleton. It was also our aim to complement them with a diverse mix of uses so that the building becomes like a city within the city.

The overall building proportions call for a slender residential tower that sits on a compact hotel volume. The structure of the building is pushed to the exterior and follows the grid of the large floor-to-ceiling window bays. This introduces a depth to the façade on the exterior and liberates the interior from freestanding columns. Slabs and columns are directly expressed as raw concrete. The structural skeleton of the building defines the architecture of the building. To introduce a sense of scale and to further foster the expression of each individual floor, each column is slightly inclined. The prominent corner of the building facing Chrystie Street is where the two geometries of the inclined columns meet. Rather than giving one direction priority, the two directions are braided together. The result is a sculptural corner column that becomes the visual anchor for the entire building.

In the dense cluster of the hotel rooms, each room has one large window that sits in-between the columns and slabs. The windows are framed with polished aluminum and are tilted towards the sky to create more space for the room and to increase the reflection of the sky in the glass. This improves the privacy for the hotel rooms and at the same time, the windows read like jewels that sit in a rough concrete skeleton. Intensive investigations into formwork assembly and surface treatment reveal and pronounce the inherent material qualities of concrete. Its edges are sharp and precise, whereas the column surface copies the texture and veins of the brushed plywood formwork. In the tower, every second column is omitted, which is a direct result and expression of the structural forces that decrease at the top of the building. This strategy maximizes the views and transparency on all residential floors and the two last floors of the hotel, both with adjacent large open-air terraces. On all these floors, the windows are vertical and recessed within the concrete skeleton; therefore, they are less reflective and less visible. The building becomes lighter and filigreed against the sky.

Across the entire street frontage, an intimate private garden with trees and informal seating provides an oasis within the hectic life of the city. The garden is separated from the street by a dense green wall that acts as a physical barrier as well as a visual screen. Two concrete frames form entry portals into the garden, and from there to the hotel or the residencies, respectively.
Herzog & de Meuron, 2014


Herzog & de Meuron Team:

Partners: Jacques Herzog, Pierre de Meuron, Ascan Mergenthaler (Partner in Charge)

Project Team: Philip Schmerbeck (Associate, Project Director), Yasmin Kherad (Associate, Project Manager), Jack Brough (Project Manager), Charles Stone (Associate, Project Director)

Iwona Bogusławska, Marija Brdarski, Christopher Cornecelli, Martin Jonathan Raub, Katarzyna Billik, Alexandra Butterworth, Sara Jacinto, Martina Palocci, Catia Polido, Farhad Ahmad (Visualizations), Áron Lőrincz (Visualizations)



Ian Schrager Company, New York, New York, USA

The Witkoff Group, New York, New York, USA 


Client Representative: 

Gorton and Partners LLC, New York, New York, USA

Cumming Construction Management, Inc., New York, New York, USA



Design Consultant: Herzog & de Meuron, Basel, Switzerland

Executive Architect: Beyer Blinder Belle Architects & Planners LLP, New York, NY, USA

Construction Management: Triton Construction Company, New York, NY, USA

HVAC Engineering: ADS Engineers, New York, NY, USA

Structural Engineering: DeSimone Consulting Engineers PLLC, New York, NY, USA

Interior Design - Hotel Rooms & Public Amenities (Lobby, Bar, Restaurant, Library & Restrooms): Herzog & de Meuron, Basel, Switzerland

Interior Design - Residential Apartments: John Pawson, London, UK

Landscape Design Architect: Madison Cox, New York, NY, USA

Landscape Executive Architect: MPFP LLC/M. Paul Friedberg & Partners, New York, NY, USA

Lighting Designer: Isometrix, London, UK

Lighting Executive: Domingo Gonzalez Associates, New York, NY, USA



Civil Engineering: Philip Habib & Associates, New York, NY, USA

Facade Engineering: Gilsanz Murray Steficek, LLP, New York, NY, USA

Geotechnical Consultant: RA Consultants LLC, New York, NY, USA

Vertical Transportation: Van Deusen & Associates, New York, NY, USA

Accessibility Consultant: Accessibility Services, New York, NY, USA

Acoustics Consultant: Cerami & Associates Inc., New York, NY, USA

AV Consultant: Clair Brothers Audio Systems Inc., Manheim, PA, USA

Code/Expediting Consultant: JAM Consultants Inc., New York, NY, USA

Concrete Consultant: Reg Hough Associates, New York, NY, USA

Food Service Consultant: Next Step Design, Annapolis, MD, USA

MEP/FP/IT/Security Consultant: ADS Engineers, New York, NY, USA


Building Data:

Site Area: 22,700 sqft / 2,109 sqm

Gross Floor Area (GFA):   245,900 sqft / 22,845 sqm

Number of Levels: 28

Footprint: 12,125 sqft / 1,126 sqm

Length: 144ft / 44m

Width: 86ft / 26m

Height: 313ft / 96m

Gross Volume (GV): 2,658,225 cbft / 75,272 cbm

Facade Surface: 115,975 sqft / 10,774 sqm


Use / Function:

1st floor (Public area)

Main entrance area (for hotel/residential/delivery)

Grab+go area, retail and restaurant

Frontyard and backyard


2nd floor (Public area)

Hotel lobby with check-in


Library / Living room

2 small meetingrooms


3rd-15th floor (Hotel)

367 hotel rooms in total

323 standard rooms (191 sqft / 18 sqm standard size)

19 ADA rooms

23 lofts (corner units)

2 suites

1 penthouse suite


16th floor (Public area)

2 big meetingrooms

Outdoor terrace


17th floor (Public area)

Gold bar

Outdoor terrace


18th floor (Mechanical)


19th-22nd floor (Residential)

2 units per floor (8 in total)


23rd-25th floor (Residential)

1 unit per floor (3 units in total)


26th floor (Roof top)

Mechanical (bulkhead)

Private terrace for top floor residential unit


Cellar plan

Main kitchen, restaurant toilets, hotel gym


Subcellar 1

Event space, offices, locker rooms


Subcellar 2

Mechanical, storage