The Market

Talk about luxury: Heated floors, bike rooms and other amenities that are worth the splurge

By Lucy Cohen Blatter | March 12, 2015 - 1:59PM

As it turns out, high-end NYC condo buyers are not all that different than their suburban counterparts. points to several home features luxury house buyers are shelling out for, and as it turns out, a lot of them -- like chef's kitchens and heated floors -- are equally popular with condo buyers here in the Big Apple. On the flip side, as the city's ongoing "amenities arms race" continues at a fever pitch, developers often add in pricey extras—we're looking at you, "dog spas"—that buyers don't necessarily think are worth the money.

Here's what high-end buyers in our fair city have come to expect—and what they can live without—according to the experts:


1. Private outdoor space. "Buyers and renters always appreciate -- and will pay extra -- for their private outdoor space," says Peggy Aguayo,  an agent with Halstead.

2. In-unit laundry. "I'd say  nine out of 10 prefer to have washer/dryers in their apartment," she says, "even if they're not planning to do laundry themselves."

3. Wine fridges. All the brokers we spoke to agreed that as long as there's space in the kitchen, this is an addition buyers appreciate. Cheers!

4. Spa-like bathrooms. Steam showers and heated bathroom floors (!) are both desirable, and buyers will pay extra for them, says Andrew Gerringer of The Marketing Directors. Deep soaking tubs are also usually a given,  as are designer toilets sinks and tubs from the likes of Toto and Duravit. 

5. High-end kitchen appliances. "You can't ask for a certain price per square foot -- and get a high-end buyer --without SubZero or Viking appliances," says Toni Haber, an agent with Douglas Elliman.

What they don't need: "Towel bars and TVs in the bathroom mirrors are just not necessary," says Gerringer.

Playrooms -- like this one at The Rushmore on the Upper West Side -- can be particularly attractive during a winter like the one we had.


"Any  practical building amenity that makes life easier for owners is a must-have," says  Aguayo,

1. Parking.  Luxury NYC buyers will pay a lot  (sometimes $1 million) for this perk, which our suburban counterparts take for granted.

2. Storage. "The number one amenity that buyers love is a large amount of private storage," says John Gasdaska, an agent with Corcoran​. "Storage is at an all-time low in the city, and they will pay extra for it," he says.

3. A bike room. With more and more people using bikes to get to work, this has become important. Apparently even high-end buyers have no room to store a bicycle in their apartments.

4. A fitness center. "Gyms are by far and away the most used amenity," opines Gerringer.

5. Communal terraces. Depending on the clientele of the building, communal terraces can be pretty important. "When it's a building with a lot of young people, they like to throw parties on the roof and meet people up there," says Aguayo. In fact, even  if they don't think they'll use it much,  "you'd be surprised how many people want to see a landscaped roof deck," says Gasdaska.

6. Children's playrooms. This is another one that depends on the building's clientele, but when there are a lot of two-or-more bedroom apartments, children's playrooms are popular, especially in case of a winter like the one we just had. "When I showed apartments this winter, I was amazed at how many nannies and kids were in those playrooms," said Gasdaska.

Amenities they don't need: Billiard rooms, yoga rooms and "lounges," which according to Gasdaska, often sit empty and hog space.


From bowling alleys to "zen rooms": Parsing the difference between good and gimmicky amenities

See all Perk Check columns

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Where can I find a Manhattan condo without all the expensive extras?

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