In yet another tale of overnight success, Brooklyn neighborhood Dumbo has shot to fame with tourists and home buyers alike, just 235 years after it came into existence.
The enclave whose acronym stands for Down Under the Manhattan Bridge Overpass started as a village called Olympia. later became part of the Parish of Brookland, and eventually a Brooklyn nook within New York City. In recent years it’s transitioned from a district of 19th– and early 20th-century industrial structures into a colony known for art galleries and now a harborage of tech startups. Along the way, as its warehouses became upscale lofts, it’s evolved into one of Brooklyn’s toniest niches.
“Brooklyn was always hip, and Brooklyn always had this cool energy, but I wouldn’t say that ten years ago it was luxurious,” says Fredrik Eklund of the Eklund | Gomes Team at Douglas Elliman.
“What’s happened since then is an explosion of wealth moving over from across the river in Manhattan and going from an alternative to Manhattan for most to a preferred place to live . . . Brooklyn has some of the best schools, restaurants and culture that New York City has to offer.”
Adds Karen Heyman of Sotheby’s International Realty: “I have been selling real estate in Dumbo for 20 years, and it’s gone from a hidden gem to an internationally-recognized destination. Brooklyn is no longer an afterthought to Manhattan when searching for luxury real estate . . . It’s the first choice.”
Among high-end properties helping Dumbo win global acclaim, one of the most notable is Olympia Dumbo, a 33-story condominium showcasing architecture by Hill West and interiors and amenities by interior and architecture firm Workstead. “Since the launch of sales at Olympia Dumbo, we have seen an unprecedented response from buyers interested in the prime location in the heart of Dumbo, the 38,000 square feet of amenities and the highly-designed residences with stunning views,” Heyman says.
Of course, coveted neighborhoods don’t earn that rep simply by adding a single luxury high-rise. The array of new buildings garnering acclaim in Dumbo could be the envy of urban enclaves twice the size, so let’s waste no time enumerating a few of the notables.
MORE FOR YOU
Front & York. Standing in the center of Dumbo, right across the street from the York Street subway station (one lone stop from Manhattan) Front & York’s look pays tribute to the area’s historic character. It features 320 rental residences, 408 condominiums and 77,000 square feet of amenities that include a half-acre park. The property’s eighth floor serves up indoor and outdoor gathering spots reservable for private entertaining. “Front & York is the first fully amenitized, luxury residential experience in Dumbo, something the neighborhood has been waiting a long time for,” says Jason Schreiber, the principal of Front & York co-developer CIM Group.
168 Plymouth. Erected in 1891 and awarded an addition 30 years later, this onetime industrial complex was the last loft conversion in Dumbo. It features a pair of landmarked structures now transformed into 46 homes. The residences speak to the history of the property and its surroundings, showcasing high ceilings, enormous windows and exposed brick and timber or concrete beams and columns.
98 Front Street. This collection of modern condominiums symbolizes the creative vibe echoing through the enclave, offering co-working spaces to go along with an array of health and fitness amenities, from salt water pool to a spa and fitness club.
60 Water St. The hallmark of this 290-unit condominium building is its 17 all-glass stories of light-filled spaces. Among the luxury features and finishes are oak floors, solar shades, central air conditioning, in-unit washer dryers and generously-sized private terraces. The high-rise also offers a fully-landscaped roof deck with sweeping views of the East River, Brooklyn Bridge and Manhattan skyline.