6sqft Magazine notes that in 2016 the New York Metropolitan Area was home to the highest number of “ultra-wealthy” residents on the planet: about 8,350 people with a net worth of at least $30 million call the Big Apple home. To accommodate this demographic that has specific needs and a different range of desires, a construction boom has been underway for some time in Manhattan. That extravagant building has resulted in huge shifts on the island and turned Manhattan into the wealthiest borough. Curbed NY cites the Upper East Side as the top neighborhood to live in, with a median income at $311,109. And Tribeca, Soho, Chelsea, Brooklyn Heights, and West Village were all in the top ten.
Homes in these neighborhoods are defined by fancy apartments and celebrity neighbors like Taylor Swift, Jay Z, and Beyoncé. Building facades date back to the 19th century, favoring Italian and Greek Revival aesthetics. Modern penthouses offer panoramic views of the city while pre-civil war houses in Brooklyn offer a look into the past.
Contractors in the city can provide luxury and decadence to any home. This list features award-winning contractors, all with press recognition, high-end design, and excellent customer ratings to help you in building or renovating your dream home in the Big Apple.
15) Brooklyn Home Company
Website | 718-715-0418 | 138 Union St, Brooklyn, NY 11231
The Brooklyn Home Company (BHC) is a family-run cooperative of artists and builders dedicated to bringing world-class living spaces to Brooklyn. Working with a lot of white and wood, the team’s finished product is always light and airy, an intriguing blend of modern style with historic elements. You might see, for instance, reclaimed wood made into barn doors, accented with custom art pieces.
The firm’s unique take on every space has been recognized by both local and national magazines. Curbed NY, Food and Wine, Dwell, and Architectural Digest took notice and have featured the firm’s work in their issues. The designs are also popular on the web, particularly on Pinterest, where many have posted photos of BHC’s work as their dream kitchen or bedroom.
The cooperative is made up of brother and sister Bill and Lyndsay Caleo, as well as their cousin Zach Caleo. Bill is head of operations, Lyndsay is the creative director, and Zach takes care of the finances. In business for eleven years, the three partners work within the borough, mostly in Park Slope, Fort Greene, Clinton Hill, Bed-Stuy and Crown Heights. They build 8-10 projects at one time, all residential, all low-rise.
14) Scordio Construction
Website | 718-369-0500 | 560 4th Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11215
Whether it is a traditional townhouse in Brooklyn or a modern penthouse in Manhattan, Scordio Construction has the skill and expertise to build it. Founded by veteran Anthony Scordio, this family-owned firm has 25 years of experience creating luxurious homes in the New York metropolitan area. Anthony grew up working in construction and started his own firm at age 19, doing door-to-door repairs in Brooklyn. He helms a staff of 45, with seven project managers each overseeing one significant job at a time.
The company’s portfolio is a mix of modern contemporary penthouses in Soho and Gramercy, renovated traditional pre-war townhouses in the Upper East Side, and large custom homes and estates in Long Island and Rockland County. Some of these homes have been featured in various magazines such as Veranda, Interior Design, Custom Home Magazine, Shelter Magazine, Period Homes, and The Architect Newspaper.
13) Hobbs, Inc.
Website | 212.388.0042 | 450 Lexington Ave, 4th Flr, New York, NY 10017
Building in New York, Connecticut, and New Jersey, Hobbs, Inc. has made a name for itself as one the leading homebuilders in the tri-state area. This award-winning firm is known for its extraordinary estates in East Hampton and Greenwich, as well as high-value townhouses and lofts in the New York metro area.
The firm’s 65 years in the business has been made fruitful by three generations of experience. Ted Hobbs started the firm in New Canaan after serving his country building navy warships in Puerto Rico. The company has won many awards for its work including multiple Home Building Industry Awards from the Home Builders & Remodelers Association of Connecticut. Additionally, Luxe Magazine, CT Cottages & Gardens Magazine, Architectural Digest and atHome Magazine have all featured its work in their pages.
12) INS Contractors
Website | 212-597-9292 | 2548 W 13 St, Brooklyn, NY 11223
INS Contractors builds and renovates high-end residential projects in the New York metropolitan area. Established in 2011 by Ivan Khymych, this mid-sized contractor constructs upscale homes and spaces that reflect both the city’s colorful history and its current modern lifestyle.
Townhouses and apartments from this firm are commonly built with a modern bent even as traditional elements, such as antique wood or brick, are incorporated into the design. These buildings are mostly located on the Upper West Side and Park Avenue. It also builds homes in the Hamptons and Brooklyn suburbs that range from traditional Victorian, Tudor, to Cape Cod.
This new traditional-style brick home in Brooklyn is a good example of the kind of custom homes the firm builds. Large modern windows contrast beautifully against the brick exterior, making for an interesting curb appeal.
11) John Hummel and Associates
Website | 212-418-5201 | 20 W 22nd St, Ste 1505, New York, NY 10010
John Hummel and Associates brings over 30 years of experience in building custom homes to the Big Apple. Its portfolio is brimming with eclectic homes ranging from colorful modern lofts and townhouses in Manhattan to sprawling estates in the Hamptons.
Its homes have won awards from industry organizations and gained recognition from the press. Its geometrical interpretation of a shingle-style home in East Hampton won a Grand Award in the 2018 Builder’s Choice & Custom Home Design Awards of Architect Magazine. Its homes can also be found gracing the pages of Elle Decor, Town & Country, Architectural Digest, Veranda, House & Garden, and Hamptons Cottages & Gardens.
Principal John Hummel earned his degree in Construction Management at the State University of New York in Delhi. He then began his career working for prominent Hampton builders before establishing his company in East Hampton in 1982.
10) Harper Design + Build
Website | 718-832-4601 | 343 Sixth St, Brooklyn, NY 11215
Harper Design + Build is a Brooklyn-based firm that combines architectural planning, construction, and interior design into streamlined services for its clients. Its team of architects and contractors bring together innovative designs and distinctive structural details and finishes to custom homes and renovations in Brooklyn, Manhattan, and the Hamptons.
The firm is led by husband-and-wife team Ryan and Christine Harper. Christine has been a licensed architect for 20 years specializing in high-end architecture. She received the Arthur Spayd Memorial Medal as a top designer in her graduating class and earned a wealth of design knowledge while studying in Italy and Japan. Ryan is a contractor with work experience building high-end homes around the world, including Kuwait and Santa Barbara.
The firm’s portfolio is a mix of classic New York brownstones and townhouses, modern contemporary lofts, and Cape Cod homes in the Hamptons. Its creations were featured in The Architect’s Newspaper, GQ, and New England Home. It has also won Best of Design Award from The Architect’s Magazine for Residential Interior. This townhouse in Prospect Park seamlessly brings together a variety of materials—wood, steel, brick, concrete, plaster, and hand-crafted tile.
9) Design Build Enterprises
Website | 718-797-1335 | 103 Atlantic Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11201
Design Build Enterprises is making a mark in the streets of Brooklyn one custom residence at a time. Its homes commonly boast clean modern lines complemented by traditional details and finishes such as custom molding and antique fireplaces. It builds single-family homes in the suburbs while its townhouses and penthouses are found in the affluent neighborhoods of Brooklyn and Manhattan.
The firm’s principal, Tambi Kat, is a LEED-certified builder with a specialty in building design & construction. Tambi created the firm after years of working with architects, designers, engineers, development firms, builders, and luxury retail companies. He acts as the main liaison for clients and oversees all phases of the construction process.
8) West Village GC
Website | 212-649-4632 | 103 Atlantic Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11201
West Village GC was founded with a mission: to change people’s stereotypes of contractors. Founder and CEO James Mansfield has worked as a general contractor in Manhattan for 18 years. He wants to bring the best service to his clients through effective client communication, collaborations with top-tier architects and designers, and exceptional craftsmanship.
James hails from England and he developed his intuitive feel for building by learning early from his father, who was a developer. Finding his own path and journeying to the US, he started the firm in 2001. Since then, he has worked on over 400 residential projects with several commercial and retail projects on the side.
Its homes are usually defined by large custom kitchens that allow for lots of entertaining. Elle Decor, Curbed NY, Dwell, Inhabitat NY, The New York Times, and K+BB have featured these in their issues. Additionally, designers are fond of the firm’s work and have hired the firm for their own homes. Christopher Hyland’s apartment in swanky Chelsea Mercantile neighborhood and George Nunno’s loft in the epicenter of New York’s Meatpacking District, are some of the firm’s finest work.
Founder and CEO James Mansfield hails from England and he developed an intuitive feel for building by learning early from his father who was a developer. After finding his own path and journeying to the US, he started West Village GC in 2001. He regularly collaborates with top tier architects and designers to animate a client’s vision.
7) IA Construction Management
Website | 718.832.1182 | 45 Main St, Ste 530, Brooklyn, NY 11201
IA Construction Management is a general contractor and construction management firm proudly grounded in the master builder tradition, where being an expert in both design and construction is integral. It specializes in complex, high-quality, luxury construction projects as well as extensive renovations of landmark buildings.
Firm partners Pat Whetzle and Pat Murtagh operate the 40-year-old firm from Dumbo and Brooklyn, with an operations center at the Brooklyn Navy Yard. They lead a team of LEED Accredited Professionals and Passive House Certified Builders to pair sustainable building techniques with deluxe designs. Whetzle traces his start back to his time spent amongst the tools and machines of the Original American Kazoo Factory, which his grandfather owned and operated. Murtagh hails from Dublin where he honed his craft renovating historic homes.
The firm’s work has been recognized in various magazines such as Metropolis, Oculus, New York Spaces, and Design Brooklyn. It has earned an R+D Award from Architect Magazine and the Renaissance Award from Friends of the Upper East Side Historic Districts. The firm is also notable for its renovation of the Pfizer Mansion in Clinton Hill, originally built and owned by Charles Erhart, brother-in-law to Charles Pfizer, and one of the co-founders of the chemical giant.
6) Disalvo Contracting
Website | 718-832-9400 | 4214 Third Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11232
Since 1977, Disalvo Contracting has been building luxury homes in upscale New York for discerning clients. The firm has focused on six- and seven-figure renovations and restorations of luxury residences often in pre-war Manhattan buildings. The bulk of the firm’s business is done in mid-to large-scale renovations that reach from $2 million up to $10 million.
The company was founded by Vincent DiSalvo, who worked with craftsmen to perform a variety of construction and finishes. Their carpentry, marble, painting, faux finish, and Venetian stucco work attracted and impressed a wide spectrum of clients, including Hollywood A-lister Michael J. Fox. The firm helped update the actor’s home in the Upper East Side, and the end result was featured in Architectural Digest. The firm’s other works have been featured in Elle Decor, Luxe, and HouseBeautiful.
5) SilverLining Inc.
Website | 212-496-7800 | 2091 Broadway, 3rd Flr, New York, NY 10023
With over 3,000 homes built and renovated in its 32 years in the business, SilverLining Inc. has proved its skill and expertise in the custom home building scene. Custom molding, intricate paint, and modern layouts make homes from this firm popular to residents of Manhattan, Brooklyn, the Hamptons, and Westchester. Some of the impressive milestones the company has observed include combining three apartments in Central Park West, an award-winning modern quadruplex penthouse, and a Sagaponack beach house.
Joshua Wiener and Joel Arencibia are the partners that lead this one-of-a-kind firm. Joshua started the company as a finishing business focusing on artisan plaster and specialty paint finishes. Over the years, under the leadership of the two, the firm has grown to become one of the top residential contractors in the city with over 200 full-time employees and a 14,000-square-foot millshop.
As the company grew, so did its portfolio and its list of accolades. The firm is included in Luxe’s 2018 Gold List of architects, home builders, and designers. In 2013, the firm’s Nassau street penthouse, dubbed ‘the SkyHouse,’ won the Jury Prize in the Architizer A+ Awards.
4) Duce Construction
Website| 212-316-2400 | 412 W 127th, St, New York, NY 10027
Award-winning contractor Duce Construction banks on more than three decades of experience in building high-end residences in the New York metro area and its suburbs. It specializes in custom homes and high-end renovations. Its premier townhouses can be found in upscale Tribeca, the Upper East Side, and Central Park West, while its luxurious estates dot the affluent suburbs such as Greenwich, Scarsdale, and Belle Harbor. Dutch colonial, French elegance, and Greek influences line its portfolio of homes.
Accolades from the firm celebrate its high attention to detail, meticulous craftsmanship, and overall exceptional performance as a business. The NY Building Manager’s Association hailed it Vendor of the Year for 2016 while the Irish Echo included it in its list of Top 50 Best Irish Businesses. Additionally, This Old House named the firm Best Building Pro in America.
The company’s works have been highlighted in the The New York Times, Architectural Digest, Metropolitan Home, House & Garden, and Elle Decor. Along with press recognition, the firm has also built for the well-heeled and the well-known, such as author Jay McInerney and publishing heiress and socialite Anne Hearst. The firm made a 1,800-square-foot aerie in Greenwich Village into an eccentric Manhattan penthouse.
3) Taconic Builders
Website | 212-929-7811 | 39 W 37th St, New York, NY 10018
Known for its extensive renovation projects and beautiful custom homes, Taconic Builders has built a reputation as a premier contractor in NYC. This full-service contractor started in New York City 30 years ago, founded by Jim Hanley and Gerry Holbrook. Now, it has operations in Los Angeles, Santa Barbara, New York, Connecticut, the Hamptons, Miami, and London. These diverse locations foster the firm’s collaboration with internationally renowned designers and architects.
The firm is responsible for many luxury apartments and estates, not only in New York City but also in other affluent areas such as the Hamptons and Beverly Hills. It has renovated rich, detailed homes that run from $500 to $1,500 per square foot, with designs inspired by a variety of cultures around the world—Russian, Italian, Chinese, Greek, and French. It also uses GeoExchange technology to build greener, more sustainable buildings.
Website | 718-834-0171 | 141 Beard St, Bldg 12B, Brooklyn, NY 11231
Operating as both an architect and a builder, MADE is a design/build firm primarily focused on private residential homes and custom retail boutiques in New York City. Its projects are defined by luxurious finishes and modern contemporary layouts. Everything from gold-hued Venetian wax ceilings to black and white marble, and even eco-friendly salvaged wood are used by the firm in its exceptional homes.
Heading the company is Ben Bischoff. He earned his Master of Architecture from the Yale School of Architecture. He was awarded the David Schwarz Good Times Award traveling fellowship for excellence in design and served as the construction supervisor for two years on the Yale Building Project.
The company’s works are constantly featured in various magazines such as Dwell, New York Magazine, Wall Street Journal, The Architect’s Newspaper, and Architectural Digest. They are also famous among the famous, with a high-profile clientele that includes actress Julianne Moore and celebrity party guru David Stark. His apartment in Brooklyn, featured in The New York Observer, comes alive with theatrical elements and surprising finishes. A graphic tiled floor that changes direction in the saddle of the doorways encompasses most of the home. The kitchen features a floor-to-ceiling glass wall that separates it and the dining area from the bedroom. The home also features black cabinetry that is made from recycled paper.
1) Aerial Design Build
Website| 212-888-1880 | 122 E 57th St, Ste 4R, New York, NY 10022
As one of the top design-build contractors in the Big Apple, Aerial Design Build does not disappoint when it comes to integrating beautiful, innovative design with polished construction in its projects. For over 20 years, it has produced top-notch townhouses, penthouses, and apartments to high-profile clientele in the city that includes the likes of celebrity designer Derek Lam. To accomplish these projects, the firm has a carefully chosen team of professionals, both in-house and outsourced.
This premier design and construction firm have the distinction of being women-owned and operated. Co-founders Julie Kelley and Rupila Selthi lead the firm and work alongside an expert team of designers and builders. Julie has completed numerous works with the Department of Public Works while Rupila has a Masters in Lighting and Design from Parsons School of Design. She has worked on high-end residences from Kuwait to Santa Barbara, California.
This boutique firm’s residential and commercial projects have been recognized by a number of media outlets like The New York Post, The Huffington Post, Wall Street Journal, and CNN. They were listed by New York Magazine as one of the Best Contractors in New York City twice and as the Contractor of Choice in its Fall 2016/Winter 2017 Design Hunting issue.