Even for New Yorkers who spend half the summer in the Hamptons, the appeal of outdoor space in the city can't be overstated. With amenities ranging from hot tubs to outdoor kitchens, townhouses set the bar for New York outdoor space, offering a place to entertain or simply retreat.
Whether you’re considering a renovation or a home upgrade, here’s a guide to townhouse garden styles in Manhattan and Brooklyn.
The Open Backyard
With room for yoga, birthday parties or even small scooters, these blank-slate backyards offer flexibility for growing families with a feeling of open space. Start your search in the Upper West Side (featured above: 132 West 81st Street), although you'll also find options in the Upper East, West Village and even Midtown East. Many townhouses with backyards also feature separate roof decks with space to entertain.
For even more wide open spaces, look to the backyards of Brooklyn, including 113 Willow Street, a 4-story Federal style home in Brooklyn Heights with a 27’-wide stone garden, and 417 Sackett Street (featured below), a 20’-wide home with space for SUV parking, a BBQ grill and al fresco dining table.
The Landscaped Garden
Some owners prefer a retreat of tall trees and lush plants to an open backyard. With the help of the right agent, you can find well-designed landscaped gardens in most Brooklyn and Manhattan neighborhoods. Look for South-facing yards, which receive extra daily sunlight to keep plants and flowers blooming, and consider how much effort you want to put into maintenance. You may want to consider a professional landscape artist like Edwina Von Gal, who designed the above garden at 208 East 62nd Street.
The Event Space
With room to seat your 15 closest friends and amenities like outdoor kitchens and wine coolers, some townhouses feel like a private rooftop bar. The bluestone garden at 313 West 4th Street (above) features an outdoor kitchen with a beverage center and lynx natural gas grill with rotisserie. At 244 East 48th Street, a 30-foot garden entertains guests as one of two spacious outdoor areas.
The Roof Deck
Sometimes the appeal of outdoor space is all about the views -- and thanks to a just-right location, some townhouses offer buyers the space of a private home with the big views of a taller building. At 550 East 87th Street (above), views span Carl Schurz Park, Henderson Place and the East River. 136 Beekman Street treats residents to skyline views from a spacious deck.
The Indoor "Outdoor" Space
One final appeal of townhouse architecture is the opportunity to create sunny indoor spaces that provide the emotional boost of being outdoors all year-round. At 53 Downing Street (featured above), a light-filled terrarium brings the outdoors in, adding to five separate outdoor spaces. Meanwhile, 7 East 88th Street features glass-domed solarium offers year-round Vitamin D in an enclosed setting.
For our full inventory of Manhattan and Brooklyn townhouses, all of which feature ample livable outdoor space, view our full portfolio; or call 212-371-8200 to speak with an agent for personalized recommendations.