While tall glass towers seem to be all the rage these days, there’s still a set of New Yorkers who are drawn to stately pre-war buildings with beautiful decorative exteriors and charming historic details.

Despite their curb appeal, though, many buyers on the hunt for these architectural gems are also weary of the challenges that come with owning a piece of history (wear and tear, outdated systems, no amenities, etc.). Thankfully, developers are opting to step in and transform stunning landmark structures, restoring them to their former glory while at the same time re-inventing them so that they contain every modern-day convenience. It is 21st century living at its finest, but with all the charm and history New York City was originally known for.

Below are some examples of luxury residential buildings that have taken a modern approach to traditional New York architecture, combining pre-war design with that latest cutting-edge amenities, services and finishes.

Projects include: 88 & 90 Lex, The Standish, 101 West 78th Street and 350 West 71st Street.

The Standish

Nestled in the heart of sought-after Brooklyn Heights is luxury condominium The Standish, a storied pre-war building. The iconic Beaux-Arts hotel-turned-luxury rental was originally constructed in 1903 and is now being reimagined into expansive residences by DDG and Westbrook Partners. Standing 12 stories in height, the building is being reimagined by DDG’s in-house design team, which has taken care to embrace the landmarked neighborhood’s history as well as preserve the building for the future, while adapting the interiors for a more modern style of living. The team’s design strategy has been that of the reveal, with the intent being to unearth the incredible history and craftsmanship associated with the original structure. Case in point, The Standish’s striking facade consists of historic brick, bay windows, terra-cotta lintels and a limestone base. DDG meticulously repaired the brick used throughout the exterior as well as applied a breathable coating to enable it to age appropriately. Additionally, the limestone from the front of the building was stripped in order to expose the natural historical element. To carry out these tasks DDG not only conducted an extensive survey of the precedents to the Beaux-Arts style of The Standish, but also worked with preservation consultants to identify the most appropriate finishes and preservation coatings.

When renovating the building’s interior, DDG made sure to take cues from the existing interiors as well as celebrate various elements of the existing structure – for example DDG worked to expose cast iron columns and decorative fireplaces, and re-install small windows that revealed former layouts. Overall DDG was heavily influenced by the original building and era in which it was created. The ultimate goal throughout the design and renovation process has been to celebrate this rich history. Residences feature Austrian white oak flooring and custom-designed solid wood entry and interior doors. Kitchens are fully outfitted with Bertazzoni-Italia and Bosch appliances and Italian Carrara marble slab countertops, while the master bath includes silver travertine slabs and mosaic accented walls and flooring, as well as a custom freestanding tub and Fantini rain shower.