By Kathleen Nicholson Webber
Originally posted in the Philadelphia Style Magazine on March 7, 2012.
|Dan Neducsin in his new home at 1706 Rittenhouse|
Dan Neducsin had no intention of moving from the sprawling 19th-century threestory brownstone on Delancey Street that he shared with his wife, Luana, when he read about a new high-rise to be built in Center City. The project, however, hit the trifecta of developments: a contemporary-style building at 1706 Rittenhouse Square, one residence per floor; luxury amenities such as an automated parking garage that brings your car to you, a gym, and a pool—oh, and panoramic views of the city from each home.
Neducsin’s interest was piqued. You see, as the man who is responsible for bringing Manayunk from hilly, dormant neighborhood to bustling destination town, he is a guy who loves views. His house in Avalon has them, and he thought if he could replicate that feeling in the city, then he would most certainly move. “I read about 1706 Rittenhouse’s big outdoor spaces. A lot of what I loved about Avalon was here,” says Neducsin.
His wife was on board when she learned she could get the privacy she craved, atypical of many high-rises (there are 31 total owners, and a private elevator takes you to your home). He also knew the developers of the building, Tom Scannapieco and Joe Zuritsky, and trusted their work and promises for this one-of-a-kind plan. “I am a developer, and it is an issue you always worry about—what will the guy next to you build? There weren’t those issues here. I knew a building like this wouldn’t happen again.”
|Each residence has panoramic views of the city.|
|A Peter Gallo relief sculpture commissioned by the Neducsins separates the living and dining rooms.|
|The dining room maintains the home’s light, modern tonality.|
And so they made a deposit before a shovel even entered in the ground. Neducsin quickly called Gabrielle Canno of Canno Design to start working on a floor plan and design. She had worked on his other homes, both with a modern bent; the Neducsins’ house on Delancey was a mix of old (architecture) and new (furnishings). “Everything we did there was modern. He wanted even more modern here,” says Canno, who worked on the project in conjunction with David Amburn and Jerry Jarosinski of architecture and interior design firm Amburn/ Jarosinski.
Each resident bought a box and had it fit out, she explains. Building standards were high, so they kept many things. She laid out the two-bedroom, 4,300-square-foot space before the residence was built, making an open plan that would take advantage of the 360-degree views of the city and rivers. Almost every room has two entrances and not many doors; any ones they do have are hidden. “Because there are so few walls in the apartment, it really was a lesson in paring down,” says Canno.
Most of the furniture and art from the Delancey brownstone made the trip to the new home. To unify the open rooms, Canno used large, palebeige porcelain tiles on the floors throughout the house. “Light transfers from room to room in this space. It is pretty spectacular,” she says. Special draperies and solar shades were installed to keep the furniture and art from fading, but walls are white with golden colored accent walls to make the space feel crisp. Canno designed built-ins for the library, living room, and master bedroom, made by woodworking craftsman Michael Lutz.
The challenge in this large open space was not to have too many focal points in a room. “The view is already a focal point,” says the designer. That is not to say the home is without visual treats of its own, such as the fireplace, clad in steel and surrounded by millwork. “The steel and wood are a nice juxtaposition. You see it right when you walk in the door,” she says. Across from it is a relief sculpture commissioned from Peter Gallo. Canno created a floating wall for it that doubles as a partition between the living and dining rooms. Two steel columns on either end suspend the wall and frame the artwork. In the master bedroom, she designed a stained white-oak bed with a leather headboard that conforms with the light palette throughout the home. And Joanne Hudson worked with the couple on a custom kitchen. “We picked out everything from the appliances to the stainless-steel countertops,” says Neducsin.
Outdoor spaces include two decks, one of which spans 45 feet, and these areas are enjoyed as much as possible by the couple. Now in their home a year, Neducsin says they use every inch of the house. “Our old house was three stories, and we didn’t use all of the rooms. Here we use every one.” Especially those in which they can enjoy the views, facing west and south. “You can see the park and all the way to the stadiums. Everything I loved about Avalon is here, but in the city.” Sales center located at 1708 Rittenhouse Square St., 215-731-1706.