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It comes as no surprise that there are several advantages to an adaptive re-use space. The lessons of SoHo and TriBeCa are self-evident, so when an insurance conglomerate vacated their art deco office building in the financial district known as FiDi in Manhattan, a developer used the new zoning laws to acquire the structure and convert it into apartments. Although the ceiling heights were similar to that of a pre-war building, the layout and the finishes were generic.

The owner, a head of young family with musical talents, was aware of the potential of the new neighborhood and proceeded with a project considered ambitious for a rental space. He acquired leases on two apartments and combined them. The combination had many benefits: Walk-in-closets and a small office were created from left-over spaces. Demising walls between the apartments were kept untouched, and an acoustical separation was thus created between public and private spaces. Floor boards were re-finished with a dark tone to provide a warm backdrop for the custom carpeting and rugs. Crown mouldings, door casings were installed. The built-in bookshelf is covered with suede and framed with bronze nail heads; the leather chair is snug inside a fabric wrapped niche.

Mirrored panels were created to provide an illusion for a spacious dining area and reflected views of the Brooklyn and Manhattan bridges. It also created a niche for the wood inlaid piano. A country French chandelier hangs over the dining table. The custom chairs are upholstered with an Edelman hide and polished nickel heads. A glazed linen fabric paneling tufted with Dacron provided a peaceful and luxurious backdrop for the children’s bedroom. Koder also designed few custom tables and consoles. The art collection is by Lily Hatchett, David Hatchett, Marko Gosar, Diane Mitchell, Ruth Litoff and Thomas Wrede.