Sutton Place is the lovely, quiet, six-block stretch of well-kept apartment buildings and a few townhouses on the East River above the FDR Drive, from 53rd to 59th Streets.
Actually, Sutton Place only occupies the northernmost two blocks; from 53rd to 57th it's Sutton Place South.
|Sutton Place Park compass|
There was a time years ago when Sutton Place was called, at least by one friend of mine "a two-poodle neighborhood.” Some would have described it as ritzy.
It was definitely one of the upscale, high end, expensive, desirable, however-you-want-to-put-it areas of the city.
There are three, count ‘em, three little parks in the area, two with beautiful views of the river and the Ed Koch Queensboro 59th Street Bridge (that's the one Simon and Garfunkel wrote the song about).
In one of those parks is the bench Woody Allen and Diane Keaton sat on admiring the view in Allen’s movie, “Manhattan.”
|Diane and Woody sat here.|
Only five of the buildings are condominiums and there are no rental buildings, which means that for the most part, people who live there own their homes and have a vested interest in maintaining their buildings and the neighborhood.
There are not many prewar buildings, but the postwars are early postwar, built in the 1950s, before the building code changed. They have thicker walls, larger rooms, real dining rooms or at least separate dining areas, and a more spacious feeling in general.
But in spite of all it has to offer, instead of being expensive, Sutton Place offers some of the best bargains in the city.
|There were four dogs enjoying this tiny park |
when this picture was taken.
Average for most of Manhattan was about $1,650,000.
Why is Sutton Place so cheap?
But there’s a perfectly good bus that runs along 57th Street straight to Bergdorf's, The Plaza, and all the other delights of Fifth Avenue. You can always get a cab on First Avenue. You could even walk to Fifth--it's only seven blocks. Long blocks, but not that long.
|Part of 60 Sutton Place South, built 1952 and |
designed so that many of the apartments
have direct river views.
Aja, Amma, Bistro Vendome, Brick Lane Curry House, Chola, Club A Steak, and Dawat all get 21-25 points for food from Zagat. All are east of Third Avenue and within a block or two of the Google-defined Sutton Place area. (I could go on through the alphabet, but space prohibits. Trust me, there are plenty more.)
Another reason Sutton Place is currently undervalued might be that many of the people who live there have lived there for a VERY long time.
It is true that one building has, or had recently, a sign on the concierge desk that says a defibrillator is available in a closet off the lobby.
|1 Sutton Place|
But under that wall-to-wall is a hardwood floor that’s been protected for all those years.
Any cost of renovation is more than made up for by the low selling prices, and more and more young people are moving into the neighborhood.
You could be among them.