It has been one helluva ride and it is finally winding down. Blinds being installed, touch-ups in full swing, the kitchen…almost done and furniture being delivered. With any luck, Kevan will be moving in during the next couple of weeks. Woot, woot! So, let’s check in for a progress report. The kitchen. The old one was perfectly nice and Boffi, so quality was great too, but it was a boring Boffi. Instead of replacing the cabinets, Mr. Bean chose to reconfigure and re-face the existing ones with a lightly finished reclaimed oak.Handsome as hell, I’d say, and pulling the fridge around to the other side of the room opened up the whole apartment…huge bonus. Each area seems to relate to the other in a much more cohesive way. Back in the bedroom, the kind and very talented women at Own Entity chose a cork wall paper for behind the bed and some super cool lighting fixtures.Can’t wait to see how this all comes together with those moose antlers and Kevan’s art perfectly arranged and displayed. Finally, remember those closets on the way to the master bathroom?Well now, it’s a full on custom and manly dressing area with plenty of room for a Mrs. Bean should one of those happen to emerge one day. Pretty bad ass, I must say. The finish line is right around the corner. More Own Entity and design choices Kevan made with them in the next and last Bean Pad post. Stay tuned!
It’s no secret that life in this town is stressful. Add a wife, 2 kids, a coupla canines, a hamster named Roberta and a whole pile of green things that need to get watered and…Holy Shit! That’s my reality, and as amazing as it is, you’ve got to take time every now and again to rediscover what got you there in the first place…a fantastic helping of thrown caution to the wind and one helluva woman. Lesa and I pulled that time out of our hats last weekend with a carefully coordinated visit from Grandma and a check-in to the oft-dreamt-about Bowery Hotel for a much-needed STAYCATION.
Ever since The Bowery Hotel opened a few years back, we’ve been meaning to book a weekend away from the everyday to actually enjoy our city as tourists… and it is completely embarrassing when I think about how many times we talked about it or intended to book it and did not. So, last weekend we made it happen in celebration of our anniversary. I checked in early on my way to work and dropped of a bottle of Milagro Select Barrel Reserve Reposado to enjoy after the workday ended just down the street. At five, we met in room #1003, kicked off our shoes and poured ourselves a drink in front of this huge window overlooking the streets we’ve called home for the last 20 years. It was a bona-fide treat to catch up about our day, our week, our lives without the constant “Mom! Dad! Mommy! Mom, Mom, Mom! Daddy!” It was so quiet. We could hear each other think and laugh and actually get through a thought without the aforementioned chant of the children. For the entire weekend, people waited on us instead of the reverse. We ordered room service, slept in, read the paper (the real paper with ink on it), we got massages, we walked around the city, we went out to dinner without worrying what time we had to relieve the sitter…we enjoyed each other and New York City. It wasn’t a trip to Mexico or the Swiss Alps, but what a fantastic trip it was just a few blocks from our stoop (and without the headaches associated with getting there.) This year, over 50 million tourists will travel to New York City to enjoy its personality and eccentricities. Last weekend, Lesa and I were two of them and what a fine town it is to visit on a balmy January weekend.
With the groundwork established and Kevan’s plans to renovate approved, the fun started right away with the demolition. When Kevan was interviewing contractors on-site for the job, one struck him as the most together because he had commented on the fact that another contractor doing work in the building had not properly covered the floors and walls of the elevator and lobby. He assured everyone that his guys would bring and install the necessary protection so Kevan wouldn’t get dinged by the building for damaged floors and walls. That guy got the job.Well, guess what happened? On the first day of demo, his workers come in to rip out walls and floors…a huge mess…and they don’t put anything down to protect the elevator or the lobby. Half way through their load-out, the building’s super shows up and understandably flips out that these guys are making a huge mess for him to clean up.Out of spite or rage, he shuts the elevator off to the 13th floor (Kevan’s apartment) and calls the president of the condo board to report the mess. The board president then calls Kevan (who is shooting and unavailable) in a blind rage telling him that he is going to be fined and threatening legal action if he doesn’t immediately rectify the situation. Welcome to the building, Kevan! At least these guys swept up after they ripped everything out. Oh, and that’s one day’s work even with the three hours of downtime before they got the elevator turned back on. Thanks guys for the great work, but did you really have to piss off everyone right out of the gate?
Life in New York City presents itself with many rites of passage. Sharing a shoebox apartment with too many people. Being sprayed by a puddle-chasing taxicab on a cold and rainy day. Getting mugged. But there is one that only a few choose to endure. To renovate an apartment. In this crazy town with our co-op and condo boards, managing agents and building inspectors, renovating can be a recipe for fueled-by-rage confrontations with everyone from contractors to ConEd dispatchers.
So our good friend, painter, commercial director, video game character and generally nifty guy,Kevan Bean, is about to jump into this sea of hungry sharks head first. He bought a sweet pad on Bowery a few months ago. The location is among the best, the views are ridiculous and it’s a good space…the only problem here is the vanilla quotient. While good quality, the kitchen is a little boring. The floors are developer specials. One closet is in a weird place and the ones in the master need help. So we’re going to embark on the good Mr. Bean’s journey with him. We’re going to follow along at key stages of what he hopes will be the “manning up” of his character-challenged home. Buckle your tool belts and let’s get going!
This is the oh-so-blah living room and soon-to-be-spruced-up and reconfigured kitchen.
A reverse shot of the living room with sick views looking west over Nolita and Soho. More on those in a different post.The closets are just big empty boxes in the weird hallway that leads to the master bath.Said master bath that is not getting completely re-done, but will be fired up a little with some glass and hardware switches.Next stop…demolition. Can’t wait for that one! We’re hoping next week. Stay tuned.