September 13, 2016

Kathryn Scott and David Foley Bring the Cool Factor to an Upper West Side Penthouse

Interior designer Kathryn Scott and architect David Foley help an East Side couple change more than just their neighborhood

by Nicole Haddad interior designer Kathryn Scott photographer Ellen McDermott architecture David Foley

WEST SIDE JUMP

For many New Yorkers the jump across town is a weighty decision. There are East Siders and there are West Siders. But for one family hoping to make a dramatic change from their traditional Upper East Side dwelling, it only took a look at a three-bedroom, two-floor Upper West Side penthouse in a landmarked Beaux-Arts Building to do so. "They wanted a complete departure from their previous residence," says interior designer Kathryn Scott. "They had been living with a collection of antiques for so long, they wanted something very contemporary, neutral, and open."

In the library, Scott modified the wood finish so the effect wasn't so overwhelming—the original built-in bookshelves had an orange tint. A zinc-topped table continues with the language of the rest of the apartment. Stairs lead up to the second floor of the library.
In the library, Scott modified the wood finish so the effect wasn't so overwhelming—the original built-in bookshelves had an orange tint. A zinc-topped table continues with the language of the rest of the apartment. Stairs lead up to the second floor of the library.

Together with architect David Foley, Scott faced the unusual challenge of opening up a space hidden underneath a sloping mansard roof with a round corner tower. First order of business: Scott and Foley exposed the roof's supporting framework to give the space a more loft-like and industrial feel. Next, a wall was knocked down to open up the kitchen to the living and dining areas, creating an open-plan layout on the almost L-shaped first floor—a round corner room underneath the cupola became a two-floor library connected by spiral stairs. Bedrooms flank each end of the first floor, with the master bedroom and dining area opening up to a beautiful interior garden terrace separated by large-scale, steel-and-glass sliding doors. Behind the dining area, stairs lead directly to the daughter's bedroom which is suspended over the living room on the second floor. The cupola, which has become a retreat of sorts for the family, has views of the library below and leads out to a small balcony.

Kathryn Scott.
Kathryn Scott.

To take advantage of the views and to keep with the industrial chic theme, Scott and Foley had two hanging benches made out of raw steel placed in the curve of the living room's Central Park-facing dormer windows. A thick cushion in ivory Holly Hunt fabric adds more comfort than meets the eye. Foley, in conjunction with metal worker Jake Ducharme, designed a Richard Serra-inspired, curved zinc wall that Scott softened with a custom-made banquette perfect to dine in and enjoy the terrace tableau. Scott went with a neutral palette of beiges and grays throughout the space, employing soft but durable fabrics that can withstand the owners' beloved pets. The result is an unencumbered space that is both luxurious and comfortable. It went from dated to modern, with a flow that is visually open and functions well. As for the clients? Both Foley and Scott are in sync again. "They loved it."

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