A luxury high-rise has over 400 “micro-suites” with rent ranging from $1,300 to $2,675 a month.
Residents have access to 27,000 sq. ft of amenities including co-working spaces and an indoor pool.
The tiny bedrooms convert into a living space with mattresses that fold into the wall.
As New York City rent continues to rise, one apartment building in Queens has reinvented the city’s infamous shoe-box-sized apartments into luxury “micro-suites.”
The 44-floor Alta building is one of many high rises that have popped up in Long Island City in recent years, many of which are still under construction.
Floors two through 16 of the building are managed by “Common,” a company that runs co-living apartments in nine cities across the US.
While the rooms themselves are tiny, the building has 27,000 square footage of shared amenity space — from co-working lounges to multiple roof decks.
I took a tour of the facilities to check out the appeal of the co-living trend and see why these unique apartments have a 95% occupancy rate, according to the company.
The unit I toured had 3 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, and a shared kitchen, a layout it shares with 80 of the 165 units. This floor plan is currently listed between $2,156 and $2,200 per room.
Residents can apply to single rooms or as a group to the whole apartment. The kitchen is the only shared apartment space beyond the bathroom.
An $80 monthly fee covers household essentials including paper towels, toilet paper, and sponges.
Two of the three bedrooms were roughly the same size, but the first had space for a small desk.
The focal point of the micro-suites is modular Murphy beds that fold out of the wall.
In the second room, I removed the couch pillows and tried setting up the bed. With some difficulty, I was able to manually pull out the bed so it rested on top of the futon and then locked it into place.
A small headboard pops up at the end of the bed, closest to the window.
Closet space in the smallest of the three bedrooms was minimal.
But the largest — and most expensive — bedroom had two spacious closets and multiple shelves.
The cheapest micro-suite currently available on Common’s website is listed at $1,664 a month for a 97-square-foot room.
Source: High by Common
Comparatively, the estimated rent for one room in a 3-bed apartment in the neighborhood was $2,484 in November according to Zillow.
One of the major differences between these apartments and a traditional lease is that residents are only responsible for their own room’s rent — not the apartment as a whole. So if your roommate can’t make a payment or decide to up and leave, it’s not your problem.
But their main selling point is definitely the amenities. My personal favorite was this sunlit rooftop lounge located on the forty-third floor.
It’s one of several shared spaces throughout the building with tables and desks for remote work.
There’s also a catering kitchen that residents can reserve for events.
All Common apartment residents have access to an app to facilitate neighbor meet-ups and organize social gatherings.
For the concrete jungle, the building had plenty of outdoor space — the standout being this rooftop movie theater.
The trade-off between personal space, like an apartment dining room, and shared space, like an outdoor grilling area, may not work for everyone, but it’s an intriguing concept for communal living.
Common’s co-living homes are most popular among people moving to a new city for the first time. Across the company’s 22 New York properties, 43% of residents are new to the city and 32% were born abroad.
With expansive workout facilities including a gym and yoga room, residents don’t have to break the bank with pricey gym memberships.
The indoor pool was the building’s most unique amenity, with huge windows letting in tons of natural light.
In a city where finding an affordable apartment (and roommates) is challenging to say the least, co-living homes are advertised as an attractive alternative to Craigslist and Facebook.
“Our goal at Common is to keep the good parts of living with roommates,” Brad Hargreaves, the founder of Common, told Insider in 2018. “The affordability, the social environments — we’re trying to get rid of as many of the annoyances of communal living as we can possibly control.”
Source: Insider (2018)
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