This beautiful neighborhood of ours shouldn’t be called Brownstone Brooklyn. Sure, we’ve got those row houses made of brown stone that often have big stoops outside and high ceilings detailed with crown molding and ornate touches inside. But we have more than that- Clinton Hill architecture is as diverse as the borough of Brooklyn itself. Let's take a look at the outside of some of the neighborhoods most well-maintained and architecturally interesting structures. Clinton Hill boasts Victorian brownstones, Italianite town houses and mansions and charming “antebellum frame houses,” according to The New York Times. The following examples make for a lovely self-guided walking tour!
My favorite street in Brooklyn used to be State Street, which runs from Brooklyn Heights through Boerum Hill. It’s a gorgeous street that’s lined with trees and boasts a variety of row houses: brownstones, brick three or four story homes, newly renovated row houses with modern facades and even clapboard single family homes. But once I moved here I discovered an even better street, and it’s only 2 blocks long. Cambridge Place.
Typical to Cambridge Place are narrow three-story homes like this one. What I like about the building is the clean lines of the windows and frames made clear by the contrasting yellow and slate blue paint. Also, the ivy-covered brick wall with gate attached to the side of the home gives the property a European feeling. Through the gate is a vineyard. (Not really). Check out the stained glass in the windows.
Cambridge Place is a smorgasbord of homes.
Across the street is this recently renovated and added onto stand-alone house. Three stories with lots of windows and a front porch- this is a real beauty. The stark white color is also interesting. In a city made of glass and brick, when wood presents itself it is often painted a color. Not here. I like the simplicity of it.
Many homes on Cambridge Place stand together in two’s. I’m not sure of the history and reasoning behind this architecturally but I think it just made sense to build a bigger structure and have one side mirror the other. It makes for a beautiful contrast.
St. James Place, one block south of Cambridge Place, also features narrow three-story homes. St. James, home to Biggie Smalls (near Fulton Street) has particularly interesting painted buildings. See this yellow home:
and this brown-tinged home with blue trim and a red door:
Clinton Hill is also home to “the first multi-family apartment building in Brooklyn.”
The Vendome, built in 1887, is on the corner of Grand Avenue and Gates Avenue. It is a beautiful 6-story building. Research did not turn up any documents confirming the claim above but there were many articles from the 80s in The New York Times about the building.
Across the street from the Vendome are 2 structures, with 2 separate homes in each. These buildings all feature beautiful covered porches held up by columns and are made of stone. They remind me of Italy.
For more images of buildings around Clinton Hill, (including Broken Angel on Downing Street), click here.
Please alert us to other buildings in the neighborhood worthy of mention! I certainly didn’t even scratch the surface.
Which are your favorites?