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New York Apartment Houses of Rosario Candela and James Carpenter


Andrew Alpern
Foreword by David Netto
Preface by Christopher Gray
8 x 11 inches, 350 pp., 357 illustrations.
Cloth, dust jacke$75
ISBN: 978-0-926494-20-6

click on the cover to preview the book

The supreme addresses of choice in New York are on Park Avenue and on Fifth Avenue, but merely living on either of these famous boulevards is not enough. The ultimate aspiration is to dwell in a suite of rooms designed by one of the two masters of apartment house design. Rosario Candela and James Carpenter understood apartment house construction inside and out.

Working with enlightened builders, these men helped an affluent market understand and appreciate the amenities that separated their buildings from those of ordinary New Yorkers. They created the grand structures and lavish apartments that are now the standard living spaces of New York's most successful people. The names Candela and Carpenter have become synonymous with well-proportioned rooms and imaginative layouts. They defined luxury in a way that has not been equaled since their day, and the planning and design principles they developed have strongly influenced apartment-house architects ever since.

Richly illustrated with period photographs and floor plans, Alpern's volume provides a fascinating architectural and social history of these great buildings, demonstrating that the work of Candela and Carpenter is as significant a contribution to the architecture of New York as its great office skyscrapers. With two additional introductory essays, and also including illustrations of more recent interiors designed by some of New York's designing elite (McMillen, Molyneux, Mario Buatta, Robert Couturier, Charles Gwathmey, Ferguson Shamamian and Rattner, Ellie Cullman, Parish-Hadley), this delightful and informative book brings richly deserved recognition to two exceptionally talented architects of the early 20th century.


ANDREW ALPERN has been an attorney for 15 years, an architect for 40 years, and an architectural historian for 50 years. He is the author of eight published books and scores of published articles. He is a native Manhattanite who has lived for more than 40 years only a few blocks from the Acanthus offices.


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