Madison Avenue Duplex


This apartment renovation expands an apartment upward with a vertical combination. The homeowners’ existing first-floor apartment had been fully renovated and decorated by a team of developer, prominent Architect, and Televised Interior Designer. The spaces were appointed with very comfortable design but a fair amount of the plan was taken with formal living room, dining room, gallery and study-type spaces which left the kids to pile up with their things in the kitchen and relatively small bedrooms.

Our mission was to expand upward to create a ‘kids floor’, programming the space so children have their own domain to drop backpacks and hockey gear, paint and shoot mini hoops at whatever volume they desire. As the kids have grown the furnishings have shifted to allow the space to be repurposed as a den away from the main living room so the kids may play video games and movies at volumes suitable to teenagers without disturbing parents. A suite for visiting grandparents is close to the kids.

An important part of this project was the expanded architectural services provided to the homeowner to facilitate the complicated real estate transaction and the intense structural renovation needed to make this project a reality. We took on the project as the upper floor became available by the developer team, just as a portion of the interior fit-out was started by the developer. The combination effort was orchestrated by Rodman Paul Architects. As the combination expanded and became more involved the team pivoted to a more conventional bid model. Negotiations for this contract involved our expertise with the developer, building management, insurers, the NYC building department, the NYC Landmarks Commission, contractors, engineers and other vendors.

In the end, the apartment flows naturally from room to room with no evidence of any compromise. The spaces move from one to the next in an effortless way as a classic pre-war duplex should.

Interiors: TFI – Thom Filicia Interiors

Contractor: DiSalvo

Engineer: Silman

Post-War Pre-War


We combined three small post-war developer specials into a grander apartment with a pre-war aesthetic.

The original apartment had individual walled-off rooms with one window bay each. To counter this “penned in” feel, we took out the walls between spaces with portals along the glass curtain wall to enlarge the sense of openness in the living spaces.

Upper East Side Modern

Upper East Side Modern Apartment | Rodman Paul Architects


New York, NY

The owner of this apartment liked her pre-war building, but wanted an apartment that felt more modern and open. The kitchen, dining area, and living room were joined into one large space, and a diagonal wall of storage painted bright yellow stretches from one end of the apartment to the other.

Upper East Side Modern Apartment | Rodman Paul Architects

Upper East Side Duplex

Upper East Side Prewar Renovation | Rodman Paul Architects


New York, NY

In the well-known Morgan Studios building the double height living rooms are always an attraction. This unit needed a new plan to make the kitchen more functional, to open up the bedroom, and to create a new dressing room and bathroom.

Living Room in Upper East Side Prewar Renovation | Rodman Paul Architects
Sitting Room of Upper East Side Prewar Renovation | Rodman Paul Architects
Upper East Side Prewar Renovation Kitchen | Rodman Paul Architects
Master Bedroom Upper East Side Prewar Renovation | Rodman Paul Architects
Bathroom of Upper East Side Prewar Renovation | Rodman Paul Architects

Park Avenue Simplicity


New York, NY

By changing the layout of this 2,100 sf, 4-bedroom Park Avenue apartment, we transformed a disoriented apartment from a dark warren of small rooms and corridors to a more open and gracious living space better suited to a young family. The original circuit of hallways between the living spaces and bedrooms prevented natural light from reaching deep into the interior.

We created openings from room to room along the perimeter wall and opened the entry vestibule to expand living space. Each room has its own boundary, but the main spaces each face one another along large openings creating the feeling of an open plan. The openings along the exterior perimeter walls allow spaces to borrow windows from adjacent rooms, increasing the sense of spaciousness.

In the original kitchen, an abandoned gas meter and piping was hung from a column in the center of the room at a height of a little over six feet and could not be relocated – making it both unsightly and difficult to work around. We designed an island around the column and added custom millwork ceiling panel with an abstract lighting array to hide the gas works.

Mid-century modern interior decor complements the signature Park Avenue traditional apartment architecture. The interiors feature a wood burning fireplace from with stone mantle from AR Asta and Sons Fireplaces, tile from Complete Tile, door hardware from Baldwin and Benjamin Moore paint.

Upper East Side Kitchen Renovation | Rodman Paul Architects
Pre-War Apartment Bathroom Renovation | Rodman Paul Architects
Living Coral | Subtly Toned Objects

East Side Residence


New York, NY

Without fundamentally changing the traditional pre-war layout of this East Side apartment, we transformed it from a dated, heavy space into an airy, modern home that fits the needs and tastes of its owners.

The original apartment had numerous low and asymmetrical beams building that made the rooms ceilings feel low and the rooms cramped. Heavy wallpapers and many contrasting patterns no longer served the lifestyle and taste of its owners, a retired couple whose children are now grown. We re-arranged two of the children’s rooms to guest rooms with a shared bath, and converted the third child’s bedroom to a den. We worked closely with the owners to determine which pieces of furniture to keep, and in many instances how those pieces could be reimagined.

We revised the plan architecturally to emphasize a clear axial relationship between the living room, the gallery, and the dining room, and then used colors, textiles and finishes to unify the three spaces. Instead of three separate and differently decorated rooms, the spaces now flow with each other and seem more spacious. Carefully detailed plaster moldings accentuate the heights of the ceilings and the continuity of the spaces.

The gallery, re-shaped to grander proportions, displays a wonderful console designed by the mid-century Italian furniture maker, Paolo Buffa, still with its original peach colored marble top. The console is flanked by a custom bench and chairs designed for the space by Rodman Paul Architects. The walls and concealed closet doors are covered with a custom Tree-of-Life Gracie wallpaper handpainted on a silver leaf tea paper background.

A coffered ceiling in the dining room provides a new setting for the clients’ 19th C silver chandelier. The silver leaf tea paper extends into the dining room, also providing warm reflections for a pair of silver sconces from Carlos De La Puente Antiques. The clients’ Sheraton style mahogany chairs and breakfront, originally dark mahogany, were painted and glazed a warm gray to further lighten the appearance of the room. The breakfront had been a topic of much debate, but after removing its pediment, and adding lighting and pink silk lining, it became the signature element of the room.

The living room ceiling features spherical vaults and beaded trims in an homage to Sir John Soane’s yellow drawing room. The walls are covered with a vintage Gracie silk wallpaper which extends the warm gray of the gallery into the living room. The furniture includes some custom pieces designed by Rodman Paul Architects along with a beautifully veined antique Louis XVI fireplace mantel from A & R Asta and a custom Mitchell Denburg carpet.

The den is anchored by an Oriental carpet, originally located in the living room, now recut to fit its new home.

In the master bedroom, we completely rearranged the plan to provide for walk-in closets, added storage, and an expanded master bathroom. The textiles and wall coverings were picked to create a unified and appearance, extending from the bedroom into the bathroom. The master bath was designed with cerused oak cabinetry and a custom-designed tile floor in onyx and green and white marble.

As with any prewar apartment renovation, there were unexpected challenges – hidden ductwork forcing plan changes, and small steel columns hidden in wall thicknesses. The only way to deal with things of that sort is to view each challenge as an opportunity to find a new, and hopefully more creative, solution. In the end, the plan has to look and feel completely natural, as if it had always been designed that way.

As with all apartments in a co-op buildings, we worked with the managing agent, the building architect, and the co-op board, when necessary, to ensure a smooth path from design through review and construction.

East Side Residence Bathroom Renovation | Rodman Paul Architects

Sutton Place Apartment


New York, NY

An older couple, considering retirement, decided to re-plan the apartment in which their children had grown up. Four bedrooms became two, and the entertaining rooms were enlarged and given new architectural details.

Riverside Drive


New York, NY

A young family purchased an untouched Upper West Side apartment and wanted a more modern and up-to-date feel. While some buildings might oppose sweeping plan changes, this building had no objection to a new and loft-like interior. The new kitchen, dining room, living room and study areas were all opened to each other, with service areas re-planned and modernized. Original multi-pane windows were replaced to provide panoramic views of the Hudson River and new wood floors were installed throughout the apartment to unify the spaces.

Living room in Upper West Side apartment | Rodman Paul Architects