A big new development is bringing the city to the suburbs
- Last Updated: 1:22 AM, August 12, 2012
- Posted: 10:51 PM, August 8, 2012
When it’s finished, Monarch at Ridge Hill will include four 12-story buildings and 500 condos. It will have 24-hour doorman service, a two-story fitness center, an outdoor pool, a playroom and bike storage. Pretty run of the mill, as far as new condos go.
But that’s not all.
Monarch also will have a golf simulator, wine cellar, screening room, basketball court, yoga studio, sauna, indoor lap pool and tennis courts. Add to that, it’s within walking distance of a Whole Foods, a movie theater, an Apple store and Lord & Taylor, plus more than a dozen other stores and eateries.
Oh, and it’s in Yonkers.
New urbanism. This is how the team behind Monarch describes the lifestyle provided at its Manhattan-style condo in Westchester, 3 miles from the Bronxville Metro-North train station after a 30-minute train ride from Grand Central.
“For me, it’s easy to sell a project like this,” says David Marom, chairman of the Horizon Group, which is developing Monarch. “I don’t like to get in my car and go anywhere. I was born in a big city, and I live in a city.”
The theory behind building Monarch next to the Ridge Hill shopping center (which contains the restaurants and stores and has been developed by Forest City Ratner) is that everything is walkable. The proximity of Ridge Hill was a huge draw for Lois Cerqueira, who purchased a two-bedroom in Monarch’s first building, which she moved into earlier this summer. Indeed, she walks to Whole Foods and even brings a cart not unlike one a Manhattanite might to her neighborhood grocer.
“Being a single woman now, [with] adult children, what better draw for them to come and visit their mom with the stores and the movies and the restaurants?” says Cerqueira.
Building one’s 162 units, finished in January, are nearly 40 percent sold, says Marom.
“When we reach 65 to 70 percent sold, we’ll feel comfortable to go forward with the next building,” he says.
It’s with this second building that the 25,000-square-foot amenities space will be built. For now, the first building has a temporary space including a fitness center and residents’ lounge with bar.
For all its convenience, however, residents at Monarch don’t have access to some of the services Manhattan dwellers take for granted.
“The retail aspect [at Ridge Hill] is great. They have great restaurants and REI and Lord & Taylor and a movie theater,” says Leah Caro, president of Bronxville-Ley Real Estate. “But they don’t have a dry cleaner or a pizza by the slice.”
The Ridge Hill complex has been constructed on 81 acres between the New York State Thruway and the Sprain Brook Parkway, meaning there isn’t a township within walking distance, nor is there a train station. While Monarch offers residents shuttle service to the Bronxville Metro-North stop, the shuttle only runs during rush hour. To get anywhere else, there’s no getting around the fact that one would need a car. Par for the course for people who are already living in the suburbs.