Vinegar Hill

What can you rent for $6,600 in Vinegar Hill?

Eye on Real Estate

May 9, 2018 By Lore Croghan Brooklyn Daily Eagle
There’s a $6,600 per month duplex for rent at 239 Front St., the rowhouse whose stoop is seen at left. Eagle photos by Lore Croghan
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Blame it on the Greek Revival rowhouse.

We wanted to find out what you can rent for $4,000 per month in Vinegar Hill — that quaint, quirky neighborhood tucked between DUMBO and the Brooklyn Navy Yard. See related story.

It is located on the East River shoreline but you can’t access the water or even see it because a vast Con Ed substation’s walls and fences block the view.

Despite the unusual situation with the electric substation, Vinegar Hill is irresistible — especially the three sections of it that constitute its historic district. One section is a scenic portion of Front Street that includes a former firehouse built in the 1850s.

A landmarked former firehouse constructed in the 1850s shares the block with 239 Front St., a rowhouse with a duplex available for rent.

A landmarked former firehouse constructed in the 1850s shares the block with 239 Front St., a rowhouse with a duplex available for rent.

When we found out a duplex in a landmarked rowhouse there is on the market for $6,600 per month, we decided to change our price range.

The eight-room, two-floor unit for rent is at 239 Front St.

The $6,600-per-month rent gets you three bedrooms, two bathrooms, two parlors, a laundry room and a kitchen with a balcony outside it that has a view of Lower Manhattan, a listing by brokerage Halstead says.

You also get a landscaped garden with two magnolia trees.

You get a slice of Brooklyn history as well.

According to the city Landmarks Preservation Commission’s 1997 designation report about the Vinegar Hill Historic District, Henry Taber built 239 Front St. between 1846 and 1852 and lived in it from 1853 to 1860. He was a builder and later a real estate agent who wound up moving to Fort Greene in the 1860s.

The Front Street rowhouse is made of brick with a brownstone base and stoop. It’s three stories tall and also has a basement.  


Rental apartments for $4,000 or less

Vinegar Hill, which was known as Irishtown because in the years after the Civil War one-third of its population was Irish-born, is a small neighborhood.

It has numerous industrial buildings plus factories that have been converted to office buildings. There’s not a lot of available housing for rent, landmarked or not.

Nevertheless, we did see rental apartments in two different buildings for $4,000 per month or less.

* One is at 109 Gold St., a seven-story, 33-unit residential building that was constructed a few years ago.

In 2015, Pinnacle Group bought 109 Gold St. from Praedium Group for $20 million, city Finance Department records indicate.

In this building, for $3,919-per-month rent, you get two bedrooms, two bathrooms, a home office and a modern kitchen, a listing by brokerage Keller Williams NYC says.

The apartment for rent has hardwood floors, a washer-dryer unit and a balcony.

Woops! After just a couple days on the market, before we could hand in this story, this apartment got snapped up.

According to Keller Williams NYC’s website, the taking rent was $3,896 per month, virtually the same price as the asking rent.

* The other apartment that caught our eye is next door at 99 Gold St., a former industrial building M. Pressner & Co., a manufacturer and wholesaler of small toys and party favors, sold to residential converter Harry Kotowitz in 2003, Finance Department records indicate. The sale price was $4.62 million.

According to Brooklyn Eagle archives, in the 1940s the occupant of 99 Gold St. was Roylace Paper Works.

Gold Street Lofts, as the building is now called, stands on the corner of Front Street, where a fleet of Citi Bikes is parked.

Across Gold Street, prayer flags fly outside a walled-in Buddhist temple.

There’s a studio for rent at Gold Street Lofts — or more precisely, there was one until a few days ago. It got grabbed before we could publish this story. We’ll tell you about it anyway.

The $2,544 per month studio is a one-bathroom south-facing alcove loft that has a modern kitchen with Bosch appliances and glass cabinets, a listing says.

The studio has 12-foot ceilings, floor-to-ceiling windows and hardwood floors. The building has a fitness center with an indoor basketball court, a furnished rooftop, onsite parking and private storage units.  

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