About The Royale, 188 East 64th Street
This impressive, 40-story, 205-unit condominium tower is one of the anchors of the revitalized Third Avenue that took shape before the stock market crash of 1987.
Completed in 1986, this tall, freestanding building reminds one of an asparagus as the top half is more elaborate than the lower half and the crown almost comes to a point.
Certainly, this building and a couple of its neighbors sprouted a new skyline for the avenue, which in this period took on a very gentrified "boulevard" air as several of the towers, including this one, were setback from the street, creating a sense of more openness.
Developed by Ian Bruce Eichner, Robert Michaelson and Martin Gang, this soaring edifice is quite dramatic and sports a very handsome entrance.
Its substantial plaza, however, is rather quizzical with its rough-cut stone, plantless pergola that bears no relation to the tower, nor to just about anything else. The pergola, in fact, appears to be merely a folly and follies are desperately welcome in New York, especially on the Upper East Side where there are few. Still, this is neither beautiful nor interesting, just puzzling and as such detracts considerably from the project's overall impact. It is not offensive, as are the spike planters across the avenue a block or two to the south at another building's plaza.
While this building has no sundeck or health club, it has striking vistas from many apartments and a superb location. The building's massing and proportions are excellent, although the rooftop enclosure is surprisingly industrial and disappointing, not in form, but materials.
The design architects were Alredo De Vido Architects and Schuman, Lichtenstein, Claman & Efron was also involved. Voorsanger & Mills designed the lobby spaces and Quennell-Rothschild Associates was the landscape architect.