New York’s best “studio” apartment has five bedrooms and walls of sound that still reverberate inside the landmark 19th century American Thread Building to this day.
Sure, a great room grand piano here would look and sound pretty good in capable hands. But Unit #2DEF-3E is legendary because Frank Sinatra, Tony Bennett, Aretha Franklin, Earth, Wind & Fire, and jazz master Paul Desmond once cut tracks here when it was known as Duplex Sound Studio. Even a subsequent fancy condominium conversion can’t rewrite that musical legacy.
Today, the space is a luxurious 3,800-square-foot duplex apartment overlooking Tribeca Park—listed for $7 million. It was designed by Interior Marketing Group, the go-to firm New Yorkers hire to beautify and stage homes to sell quickly. Rolling Stones’ guitarist Keith Richards was a recent beneficiary of IMG’s residential magic wand.
Duplex Sound Studio comprised the 2EF/3E portion of this combined unit. It was owned and managed by Brazilian jazz composer Eumir Deodato, a Grammy-winning artist whose daughter married actor Stephen Baldwin and whose granddaughter Hailey married singer Justin Bieber.
It was a fully functioning recording studio when the current owner acquired the space (later combined with Unit 2D)—amid lingering echoes of Sinatra’s light baritone, Desmond’s smooth alto sax, Earth, Wind & Fire’s funky horns, and Franklin’s epic mezzo-soprano voice which carried well beyond the walls of the historic American Thread Building.
“The American Thread Building has such a rich history and stunning architectural detail,” says Cheryl Eisen, IMG CEO. “This unit in particular, features massive arched windows and an open loft layout so we wanted to ensure they were the star of the show. We elected to use neutral-toned, low-profile, modular furnishings to highlight the signature arched windows and pre-war architecture.”
Built in 1894 by architect William B. Tubby, the American Thread Building’s distinctive limestone-and-brick façade has been a neighborhood landmark for well over a century at 260 West Broadway. The Renaissance Revival building was officially listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2005.
It was originally called the Wool Exchange Building, owned by the Wool Warehouse Company in an unsuccessful bid to compete with Boston’s wool market dominance. In 1907, the building was sold to the American Thread Company, when Unit 2D operated as a wool trading floor and commodity exchange.
By the early 21st century, most of the building had been converted to luxury condos, live-work lofts, or exhibition space. One renovation uncovered another secret history treasure—an early black-and-white graffiti mural (from 1979) painted by pop artist Keith Haring in the building’s triplex townhouse.
Listed by Compass’ Leonard Steinberg, the sleek loft dazzles with custom furnishings, graphic art, metal accents, and contemporary color-splash interiors (a nod to the Keith Haring discovery) which defy the building’s architectural pedigree in the best way—contrast. But it would be foolish to run too far from the past here. The overhaul still pays homage to those high pre-war ceilings, rare Roman columns, and the huge, show-stopping great room with mesmerizing windows along 45 feet of sunny, south-west-facing Tribeca Park frontage and its majestic London Plane trees.
“The great room’s sheer scale and oversized windows take me back to those amazing Soho warehouse lofts of which few remain,” says Eisen, who also remodeled a $3.75 million listed apartment in The Grand Mansion, another Renaissance Revival that overlooks Madison Square Park. “It’s the perfect space for entertaining.”
The five-bedroom apartment is space maximized for grand-scale living—boasting three-and-a-half baths, a laundry room as well as an open, modern kitchen (with stainless steel appliances and white cabinets) and a dining area that open to the sprawling L-shaped great room—offset by a distinctive black matte Roman column.
“When you are lucky enough to have such a large, open living space, it can be challenging to make the room feel warm and cozy,” says Eisen. “We created two distinct seating areas connected by a series of low tables that keep the visual planes clear. Each space maintains its own function while still feeling cohesive and allowing for conversation.”
The bedroom wing houses four bedrooms facing quiet St. Johns Lane with two bathrooms, expansive closet space and private storage. Upstairs the master suite offers a large walk-in closet and a window-framed bathroom with a huge jet tub, dual-head shower and twin sinks.
Located blocks from Soho and Hudson River Park, it’s a prime location with top-tier building amenities like a concierge service, roof deck, garden, health club, and a bike room. If you can spare Unit #2DEF-3E’s expense and appreciate its backstory, this listing not only looks good, it sounds good. Just in case, go grand piano shopping too.