River Views Meet State-Of-The-Art Acoustics In This NYC Penthouse


gray living room

The living room’s custom sectional from Holly Hunt and swivel armchairs from Luxury Living Group provide plenty of seating to enjoy the Hudson River views. A Pembrooke & Ives custom coffee table grounds the space while the Stark Carpet rug lends warmth and texture. Floor-to-ceiling drapes of a J. Robert Scott sheer fabric enhance the windows’ impressive height.

statement staircase

A custom light fixture by Jeff Zimmerman crowns a West Village home’s striking stairwell, which was fabricated by Legacy Stairs & Millwork, Inc., sheathed by Bogen Construction Management. Designers Rendell Fernandez and Inna Medvedkina selected custom leather wall panels by Spinneybeck offering modern contrast to the cerused white-oak flooring from I.J. Peiser’s Sons.

sleek kitchen

In the kitchen, handblown crystal pendants from Holly Hunt delicately accent the multilevel island, constructed with Taj Mahal Stone by Marble and Stone Creations, Inc. Stainless steel and leather stools from Artistic Frame make a comfy breakfast perch while sleek Gaggenau appliances play to the metal backsplash.

blue dining area

The dining room’s leather chairs from DDC provide a contemporary complement to the octagonal dining table, custom-made with stained, varnished oak and inlaid brass by Avenue Road. A vintage ceiling fixture by Max Ingrand for Fontana Arte adds a touch of vintage glitz.

black table round mirror

A custom plaster wall finish by Fresco Decorative Painting casts the upstairs landing in a pearly glow. Vintage finds from John Salibello, including a 1960s Italian elliptical mirror and a 1970s wall-mounted console attributed to Karl Springer converse with Salibello’s own contemporary frosted Murano glass sconce designs and a Haas Brothers stool.

lavendar chaise lounger

The sitting room, brushed in crisp lavenders inspired by the Crosby Street Studio carpet, doubles as a guest room. White lacquer built-ins offer sleek storage while upholstered pieces like the leather swivel chair with footrest from DDC and custom chaise keep the scene soigné. The bronze leg cocktail table from Holly Hunt adds a touch of glam.

bedroom view

Overlooking the New York Harbor, the main bedroom is arranged to soak in the sights. A vintage Italian asymmetrical brass light fixture from John Salibello illuminates a Pembrooke & Ives custom bed dressed in E. Braun & Co. bedding. A Stark Carpet rug and Patrick E. Naggar club chair from Ralph Pucci soften the windows’ industrial lines; a sconce from Donghia provides reading light.

marble bathroom

Fernandez chose the main bathroom’s azul quartz wall slabs from ABC Stone to resemble the blue-gray sky outside. White onyx tiles from ABC Stone and hardware from Lefroy Brooks complete the luxe tub; nano-glass floor slabs reflect sunlight throughout the space.

Fernandez oriented all deck furnishings outward to capitalize on the open-air views. Sheltered by a pergola designed by Dirtworks Landscape Architecture in collaboration with Peter Hosier Design LLC, a custom dining table surrounded by David Sutherland weathered-teak barstools expands the home’s entertaining space. Chaises from Walters Wicker offer a spot to lounge.

Design bestows an unmistakable power—the kind that intuitively improves the everyday experience of those surrounded by it. Rendell Fernandez understands this acutely; as a design director for bicoastal firm Pembrooke & Ives, he leads projects that tap into clients’ emotions, resulting in bespoke spaces that practically rise from their subconscious. “We believe design changes lives,” says Fernandez. “Our role is to expand our clients’ comfort zones to open new ways of living.”

Case in point: potential clients who had purchased a new-build penthouse on the Hudson River in Manhattan’s West Village neighborhood. The clients, a couple with three adult children, were pitching designers with two primary requests: comfortable design that prioritized the views, and a state-of-the-art sound system. “He’s an audiophile and wanted to enjoy music at concert volume without bothering the neighbors,” says Fernandez. “We had to use both technology and design to take this space beyond their expectations.”

Under the stewardship of Pembrooke and Ives’ president Andrew Sheinman, and together with general contractor Noah Bogen and fellow designer Inna Medvedkina, Fernandez developed a plan that won the team the project. Working with a raw space, they devised a layout that set the amenities—the powder room, fireplace, coat closet, bar and wine refrigerator—into a single core that ran the length of the apartment. This formed an entry hall on the north side while opening the main areas—the living room, dining room, kitchen and upstairs bedrooms—to the views on the south side. “The goal was an efficient layout with an open plan,” says Fernandez, “and with this arrangement, the space becomes a backdrop for the spectacular vistas of both downtown and the New York harbor.”

Once in execution mode, two immediate challenges met the team: the construction of a staircase and the head-to-toe integration of acoustics. Proper stair placement required moving and resizing two major structural beams. Plus, the floor couldn’t support its full weight, so it had to be suspended from the landing above. To prevent sound from traveling, ceilings were raised, floors were reinforced with high-density polymer, and walls were surveyed to tie down anything that might rattle at high volumes. “Vibration and sound absorption were thoroughly considered and integrated into every part of the construction,” says Bogen. In addition to the living room’s two speaker towers, five subwoofers were installed in the ceiling through ports eventually hidden in draperies and lighting coves.

The clients had requested an emphasis on beautiful materials from the start and in this case, Fernandez saw a double function. “We deployed several to both add texture and reinforce the acoustic quality,” he says. For example, leather paneling lines the stair hall, creating verticality while deadening noise and the office’s walls are flush in wool flannel, warming the space through another soundproof layer. A focus on materials throughout amplifies the home’s mastered aesthetic: cerused white-oak floors, artisan plaster walls and gleaming stone surfaces all exist together in fluid symbiosis.

In its final form, the stair itself is a site to behold. Twelve applications of high-gloss oil paint create a sculptural centerpiece, while a custom brass light fixture mimics its captivating form. At the landing above, a trio of vintage finds counteract the stair’s contemporary presence, providing a juxtaposition that Fernandez strikes often. “Adding vintage to the mix ensures a universally timeless feel,” he says, pointing to pieces like the dining room’s azure Max Ingrand chandelier. There and throughout, Fernandez pulled blue and gray palette notes directly from the Hudson River, creating a calming effect that reiterates the view.

Notably, by Manhattan standards the penthouse is sizable, but not giant. “The project was an exercise in maximizing space,” insists Bogen. The first floor’s full-height doors create volume by carrying the eye up, an island separates the dining and kitchen areas while hiding a television and warming drawers, and a raised counter in the kitchen provides another spot to eat. Spatial considerations extend to the outdoor terrace—a verdant aerie designed by landscape architect Britt Zuckerman—where Fernandez arranged three separate ‘rooms’—a lounge section, dining area and sunbathing space. The team even managed to sneak in a hot tub and outdoor shower.

It goes without saying that impeccable consideration applied to every detail. One encapsulating example: the powder room, which was fabricated as an architectural cabinet. This pivot meant the team could follow tolerances found in millwork, setting the wall at 3-inch thick versus the standard 6.5-inch, thus saving critical room. “This home is one of the best-crafted spaces we’ve built,” says Fernandez, adding, “When you assemble a group of experts as we had here, the results will push the limits—and be exceptional.”