Home Consulting Life on LI Sound led developer to build Philips Harbor condos

Life on LI Sound led developer to build Philips Harbor condos

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Philips Harbor Mamaroneck
Philips Harbor marked a return for developer Michael Rosen to his home county. Photo by Ryan Deffenbaugh

For Philips Harbor, a new set of million-dollar condos on the market in Mamaroneck, the water is the main attraction.

The seven condos — two of which have already sold since the properties hit the market earlier this year — are built with floor-to-ceiling windows that optimize the view of Mamaroneck Harbor and the Long Island Sound. The homes even feature some nautical touches, including circular windows above each front door that look a bit like portholes.

The condos are at the corner of Delancey Avenue and Boston Post Road near the village’s southern gateway, just across the street from Harbor Island Park. It’s a spot where developer Michael Rosen said he saw clear potential to build homes around the coastal views.

“It really has an exciting view of the harbor, Long Island Sound,” Rosen said. “I felt if I could take advantage of that, it could really be something special.”

The main construction on the properties wrapped up late last year. They are marketed by Houlihan Lawrence. The three-bedroom and three-and-a-half bathroom units across four levels, ranging from 2,972 to 3,256 square feet, are starting at $1.79 million.

Philips Harbor
The view of Mamaroneck Harbor from a veranda.

Rosen and his company, A Little Rose Company, have been building in Westchester since the early ‘80s, he said. He’s built homes and condominiums across the county, including in Rye, Purchase, White Plains and Greenburgh.

Philips Harbor marked a return for Rosen to his home county. He has focused his building in Florida since the early 2000s, but returned for the Philips Harbor project, as well as a 96-unit apartment building his company is codeveloping near the Mamaroneck train station with Halpern Real Estate Ventures, called The Mason M.V.S.

Rosen’s childhood growing up on the Long Island Sound in New Rochelle made him particularly interested in property with views of the water, he said. Rosen and his father even frequented the restaurant that once occupied the Philips Harbor lot before it closed down. “We loved the roast beef there,” he recalled.

But he and his father also loved the view. Rosen is a third-generation developer. Both his dad and grandfather were also in the real estate business. When the property became available a little more than three years ago, Rosen jumped at the chance to develop it.

Property records show Philips Harbor Development LLC bought the property for $1.85 million in January 2015. Rosen named the project in honor of his father, Philip, who died shortly before the property was bought.

The village had already approved 15 townhome units for a previous developer, which were never built. But Rosen said the prior plan didn’t allow for each unit to have a water view. After buying the property, he came to the village with plans that actually reduced the number of units.

“It’s a rare thing for a developer to do,” Rosen said. “But I wanted all the footage on the water.”

The water had to be the selling point, he said. The property is close to a public park and walking distance to Mamaroneck’s downtown, but the harbor view was the property’s main draw to Rosen. To avoid having the view blocked, he even worked with Con Edison to have the power lines that ran along the street in front of the property buried.

The 4-story condos focus on opening up to water views as much as possible, with the tall windows and terraces on the master suite and great room levels.

“I was thinking of this in terms of the empty nester, who would basically live in the great room and master suite,” Rosen said. “When the kids come to visit, they would have their own floor with nice bedrooms and baths, but the best views are on those two main floors.”

That clientele includes snowbirds who may want to spend the summer on the sound and then pack up for Florida in the winter, he said.

Rosen collaborated with Wade Allyn Hallock, a Miami-based designer, on the condos, with a focus on modern touches. The units include open concept kitchens, floating staircases and private elevators. Techie features such as Nest smart thermostats and electronic locks and video doorbells add to the modern feel.

“A lot of people are moving toward the contemporary look, cleaner lines, more European,” Rosen said. “Already there are a lot of contemporary homes with the look (in Westchester), but not as much in a multifamily situation.”

The sales team has also pitched potential buyers on the tax advantage of condos compared with property taxes on a single-family home, particularly with the new federal tax law limiting local deductions to $10,000. Rosen argued that owning a property at this price that is taxed as a condominium can save a homeowner more than $25,000 compared with a single-family home.

Rosen’s other Mamaroneck project, The Mason M.V.S. apartments, is nearing the start of its leasing. Rosen also has an office in the village where he has focused his recent Westchester development.

He said Mamaroneck has the right mix of “water, a vibrant dining scene and transportation convenience” to be attractive for developers.

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