Maya Lin is a master of simple, sculptural spaces. Ever since Lin submitted the award-winning design for the national Vietnam Veterans’ Memorial, while still an undergraduate at Yale, she has brought her striking sense of design to museums, memorials, public spaces and private residences. Now, the first apartment Lin ever designed on New York City’s Upper East Side has come onto the market.
Originally renovated in the late ‘90s, the apartment is located in a boutique 12-unit, full-service condominium building at 4 East 62nd St.–a street filled with palatial townhouses.
It is now a five-bedroom, five-and-a-half bathroom home, thanks to the 2001 addition of the unit next door. The combined units maintain the integrity of Lin’s design with the benefit of additional square footage.
Striking architectural details abound, including a large glass ceiling that floods the living area with light, a floating staircase connecting the dining room to a wing of bedrooms and Sycamore paneling throughout — all meant to create the feeling of an urban retreat.
Lin originally conceived of a design that would make the apartment somewhat origami-like and flexible for various uses. She installed moveable walls with cabinetry that can transform two of the bedrooms into a larger suite. The added unit furthers her vision, with two levels of social space, including a living room with a wood-burning fireplace, an additional sitting room, and an open kitchen/dining room.
The eastern wing encompasses an expansive entertainment room, the master bedroom suite, and the library. Outdoor spaces include two patios designed by David Giovannini: one outside the entertainment room and one outside the master bedroom suite. A separate three-bedroom wing allows for maximum privacy.
With its signature Lin style, the apartment offers a counterpoint to the hectic city life around it. At the same time, the sense of expansiveness Lin infused makes for an ideal backdrop for parties and gatherings. Most of all, it’s a way to own a piece of living history.