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Group transforms Cocoa Exchange into luxury condos.

A distinguished Beaux Arts landmark building at 1 Wall Street Court, has been transformed into Downtown's newest residential con dominium.

Located at the intersection of Wall, Pearl and Beaver Streets, the residence is named Cocoa Exchange, paying homage to its former life and the sign that still adorns its facade.

The triangular building, similar in shape to the iconic Flatiron Building in Midtown, served as the original site of the New York Cocoa Exchange from 1931 to 1972. At the time of its completion in 1904, its neo-Renaissance architecture, polychromatic terra cotta facade, and large windows were praised in the architectural community. Built by the Munson Steamship Company, a prominent shipping line active in the South American sugar and lumber trade, it served as the company's headquarters until 1921. By 1931 the building had become home to the world's first cocoa futures market, amidst the United States' emergence as the world's largest cocoa consumer. The building's first floor and mezzanine were used as the exchange's trading floor and offices were dispersed throughout the upper floors. After the New York Cocoa Exchange joined with sugar and coffee trading futures and moved to its present home, the building was transformed into a commercial office building and remained that way until the conversion process began in 2003.

Cocoa Partners, LP, the owners and developers of Cocoa Exchange, enlisted the expertise of Colum McCartan and his design team at McCartan Design, a noted interior design firm acknowledged for their award winning hospitality designs, to transform the interior and common spaces within the landmark building.

McCartan's work has included such notable projects as The Biltmore, Le Parker Meridien, and Tower 31 in New York City, and Hotel Vitale, Hotel Adagio, and Hotel Metropolis in San Francisco, California. The firm's efforts have culminated in a design that recognizes the historic nature of the building while capturing the energy of the revitalization that the neighborhood is now undergoing. The quality of materials and details is reminiscent of historic construction.

Cocoa Exchange consists of 15 floors and 126 studio, one, and two-bedroom residences. Units range from 341 to 1,494 square feet, with finished ceilings ranging in height from 9 feet to over 12 feet.

The historic white Carerra marble lobby and grand staircase at the building's original 82 Beaver Street entrance has been fully restored while the main residential lobby has been re located to 1 Wall Street Court on the Pearl Street side of the building. The residential lobby provides a unique contrast with the historic lobby and utilizes traditional materials in uniquely modern design. The space is accented with chiseled limestone, rosewood paneling and flooring, bronze Venetian plaster, and rich textiles, highlighting the space's dramatic 20ft ceiling height. The lobby features a 24-hour concierge. A rooftop penthouse has been added to the building. Designed by McCartan, the indoor/outdoor space features a floor to ceiling glass curtain wall.

The furnished lounge features a catering bar/kitchen. The landscaped sundeck features spectacular river and city views and is accented with outdoor furniture and a misting area. Cocoa Exchange opens this week.
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Publication:Real Estate Weekly
Date:Apr 12, 2006
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