New Building Report Card: 450 Washington, née Truffles Tribeca

No doubt there has been some progress since I toured 450 Washington in early January, making my photos a bit out of date, and there is also some real estate news: the PR folks for the developer, Related, tell me that the building was the city’s best-selling new development in February by reported signed contracts. They’ve sold more than 40 units out of the 176 they created (down from 300) when they converted the former rental building to a “condop.”

(Let the debates begin, but this is how they explained it to me: since it’s on leased land (from the Ponte family), the building cannot be a real condo. So instead it has condo rules: there’s no coop board approval process to buy or sell; you can buy under an LLC; you can rent it out. Of course that last part surprises me, given it’s a luxury building…)

There’s a contract on an off-market penthouse that was last asking $17.3 million (that comes out to $4,304 per square foot.) And three adjacent residences on the 15th floor, units 1503 (last listed for $6.195M,) 1502 (last listed for $7.295M,) and 1503 (last listed for $1.95M,) also just went into contract, totaling a last list price of 15.44 million. See it all on Streeteasy here.

They hope to be fully finished by end of summer or early fall.

Available residences are listed from a 443 square foot studio for $939K to a 2,438 square foot four-bedroom for $8.495 million. The one-bedroom I have shots of below lists for around $1.3 million and the three-bedroom for $6 million.

The building in general

I had never really bothered with the building, other than the occasional visit to Greca (and soon: Big Gay Ice Cream). It has a very gracious front yard entrance — I kind of like the long (covered) walk to the front door — creating a courtyard between the two towers. The landscaping there is bucolic, though not inspired. Maybe less is more, and of course, it’s winter. I’ll be curious to see how residents use it.

I had forgotten that the building is a full city block, from Desbrosses to Watts, but when you get in that courtyard you are quickly reminded: it feels mammoth, even though it’s only 16 stories on the west and 11 on the east.

The rehab included replacing all the windows to these huge ones and adding French limestone plaster to the facade to match Related’s 70 Vestry next door. It’s definitely more handsome than it was, and no doubt the windows make the sale. It’s much more handsome, even if there is no nod to the neighborhood’s industrial past. (It’s more an UES kind of look.)

Plus the views of the neighborhood were so great, I had to give them their own post.

The interiors

It’s pretty much all about the views, since structurally, the spaces are not remarkable. I am guessing the ceilings are around 9 feet, and the one-bedrooms are small — the ones in the $1.3 range are around 600 square feet. All the apartments are delivered with interiors from the architects, Roger Ferris + Partners.

Like every new luxury development, it’s an amenities war in the commons spaces. These guys went full-bore with a golf simulator, but my favorite spot was the living room, which I think they call the lounge. If you used one of those studios as a pied a terre, you would be in this spot all the time. There’s also a dining room, play space, fitness studio and parking.

Three bedroom views

One bedroom


I’ll take just about any roof deck, but this one, two levels on the 12th floor roof of the east tower, is set back from the river. The better views are looking east, at the neighborhood.

Is it an improvement?

For sure over the former Truffles Tribeca. I am just thrilled to never have to say that name again. And it looks much smarter with the limestone finish and bigger windows. Plus I am sure the building will be activating the ground floor retail spaces. I know northerners would LOVE a market of just about any kind. There is nothing up there.

Pass or fail?

Pass. It’s prettier, even if not terribly interesting to look at, will add more retail to Washington Street, and the residents will hopefully add some life back to that block.



  1. A microcosm of NYC’s housing woes: housing built in 2009 as 300 rental units gets (mostly) gut renovated 11 years later to become luxury condos, also losing 126 units in the process.

    • Funny that when they had to sell their units, or is that long term lease(?), they finally fixed that horrible dark prison grey exterior color put in by the original Truffles developer…
      The land was long term leased so Ponte family would not have to pay a rather sizeable capital gains tax on the land appreciation as they would in a sale.
      I do realize these built on leased land condos are more common in cities such as Boston – but wonder what the ramifications are here in NYC? And how does one value their “purchase” as noting that in another 90 years the lessee will own them instead of you(?) Q: OR How exactly does this process work in NYC?

  2. Based on what is readily ascertainable by a casual observer, the construction quality of these units (and building) seems a bit underwhelming in view of the price points, no?

  3. And again, that is not the definition of “condop”. A condop is where the entire building is a condominium consisting of two (maybe three) units where one of them, the residential unit, is then co-oped.

  4. What does this mean in the long term that the condo sits on leased land? Is it no different than the many land leases you see in Sutton Place, or that building at the corner of 6th & 57th?

  5. Much of that area in Tribeca is on land leased from Ponte Equities, including, among others, 70 Vestry (which later bought their land), Fouquet’s (the new hotel on Greenwich) and 261 Hudson. I imagine the buyers there paying tens of millions for a condo will be pushing to buy it.