Palisades House Sells for $1.45 Million

Palisades House

Palisades House

Palisades House

Palisades House


Twenty-eight years ago, Frank Platt wanted a home where he and his wife, Judy, could live and where they could entertain family and friends in their retirement. So he approached his cousin, architect Charles Platt, to design the home.

The request was more than a family favor. There was some history to it.

About 100 years earlier, Charles Platt’s grandfather, Charles A. Platt, a prolific turn-of-the-century architect, had designed a Georgian manor in New Hampshire for Frank’s grandfather, Frank Cheney Jr.

For Frank Platt, the younger Charles Platt designed a modern three-level home that is over 100 feet in length and sited from east to west on property in Palisades, N.Y., a hamlet in the town of Orangetown, to capture views of the Tappan Zee Bridge and the Hudson River.

“We call the house modern with a capital ‘M,'” says Frank Platt. The sides of the home are “rounded off” with bay windows at his request, something he admits his cousin wasn’t “too keen on” doing in the beginning. “We had good arguments, because we’re both very stubborn,” says Mr. Platt.

But the family ties prevailed as they had with their grandfathers before them. “We both enjoyed the fact of the coincidence of history,” says Charles Platt, of Manhattan-based firm Platt Byard Dovell White.

Frank Platt, now retired, worked in publishing and still serves on the board of Poets House, a Manhattan poetry organization that he has been involved with for 26 years. Ms. Platt is a retired teacher, and the couple, both 80 years old, have been married for 56 years. They have three children and four grandchildren.

They purchased the land in Palisades, which locals often call Sneden’s Landing, for $200,000 in 1985 after living on the Upper East Side for 25 years. Ms. Platt knew the Rockland County area because a friend lived here, and Mr. Platt had visited Sneden’s Landing as a child with his parents. For the couple, the neighborhood offered “the quietness of the country,” says Mr. Platt. “I had trouble sleeping when I came out here.”

The contemporary home is located on 2.6 acres on a hill near the Hudson River and the Palisades cliffs. Charles Platt situated the home to allow for as much sunlight as possible through the home’s many windows, something Mr. Platt says he adored after their dark apartment in Park Avenue.

“Quiet, that’s the name of it,” he says. “I sometimes get up at 6 a.m. and sit outside. The light is transfixing.”

While certain rooms in the Palisades house look out to the Hudson River—more so in winter when the trees are bare—the earlier Platt-designed New Hampshire home, which still stands, is situated above the Connecticut River.

“My grandfather and I both respected the relationship of the inside of the house to the outside,” says Charles Platt. The Palisades house is “intimately related [to the property] because of the views to the north and the garden to the south,” he says.

The 4,500-square-foot home has three bedrooms and three bathrooms, and the property is next to Columbia University’s Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory. “It gives us tremendous privacy,” says Mr. Platt. The house is about 20 miles north of Manhattan and 7 miles south of Nyack.

The house was first listed in February for slightly under $1.8 million. It was relisted in July for its current asking price of $1.45 million. Mickey Murray of Sotheby’s International Realty holds the listing.

“We’ve had wonderful times in this house,” according to Mr. Platt, who says the couple is selling for health reasons. “Twenty-five years seem to have floated by.”


Sourced from WSJ

Victoria Granden

I enjoy blogging about real estate tips and tricks in my free time.