Tour a Central Park Home With a “Sexy Mood” That Looks Like It Could Be in Paris
Think of Central Park, and one might conjure images of dappled paths, lush knolls, and rowboats drifting across glassy water. After dusk, however, shadows descend and transform the sprawling grounds into something more mysterious and alluring. For the gut renovation of the prewar apartment—situated on Park Avenue just blocks from Central Park—that interior designer Danielle Richter shares with her husband, Glenn, she drew inspiration from the sinuous landscape as well as the feminine energy of the stars and the moon.
“I wanted to incorporate the juxtaposition of the curvilinear shapes of the park when it’s getting dark and the straight lines of the surrounding architecture,” Richter says. “There’s a sexy mood.” To that end, hourglass curves and celestial motifs repeat throughout the couple’s 3,200-square-foot apartment, which originally attracted Richter with its wide footprint, high ceilings, and three-sided exposure. Taken down to the bricks and meticulously reimagined, the home now hosts Richter’s design office as well as two bedrooms and four and a half bathrooms.
From first impressions onward, the apartment is a testament to creativity, boldness, and feminine power. “I had an opportunity based on the perimeter walls to have a grand foyer and create some drama,” Richter says. “I wanted to treat the foyer like an art gallery that would lead you to an artful home.” As such, three paintings by female artists hang in the space, where custom Ann Sacks tiles create a starburst pattern underfoot. In the corner, an Art Deco–era sandstone bust showcases the woman’s form on a marble plinth.
The adjacent dining room is similarly curated. “I wrote down where each guest would have a fantastic view of the apartment’s artwork,” Richter says. “The boiserie was applied to the walls to regulate the large space and create a backdrop for the contemporary art.” Indeed, throughout the residence, classical influences like plaster moldings, antique fireplaces, and chevron wood floors nod to the building’s provenance and Richter’s French heritage. Inspired by Central Park’s water lilies, the designer also created an undulating dining table whose three segments of natural quartzite nestle against each other, showing off the bronze joinery.
Custom bronze door handles, again evoking the night sky with their half-moon shape, lead to the kitchen, which is a decidedly glamorous space with hammered metal cabinets and a pink quartzite island. “I wanted it to be a gem in our home,” Richter says, “a place we’d enjoy every morning making coffee, or in the evening sitting down to carryout.”
The public entertainment areas cede to more intimate private quarters that subtly echo the home’s themes. The custom leather bed and wool-and-silk rug in the primary bedroom, for example, feature a repeating hourglass shape, and an hourglass canopy hangs overhead. Her bathroom—Richter’s favorite space in the home—is presided over by a custom bas relief depicting an Art Deco–style goddess dropping roses into the tub. “I wanted to create a modern, clean spa with a nod to the past,” Richter says. “I love mixing old and new.”
At once timeless and current, seductive and starry, Richter’s home illustrates what happens when someone with extraordinary vision takes complete control. “When you’re working on your own home, it’s so satisfying to do a gut renovation and know every inch of space,” she says. “I feel very blessed to be able to do that for me and my husband.”