Your Guide to Classic Homes and Historic Neighborhoods

Staten Island Real Estate, Neighborhood News and Discussions.


Todt Hill, Staten Island


has a summit of 409.2 feet above sea level. It is the highest point along the Atlantic coastline south of Cadillac Mountain on Desert island, Maine. It boasts views of the Verrazzano Narrows Bridge and the Lower New York Bay.  This provides residents with spectacular views , which historically offers the most expensive real estate on Staten Island. Lot sizes are at least 100 by 100 feet, but one can still find estates with one or more acres here.


The bucolic feeling of the area is due to many large lots, mature trees, grand homes and  open space . The area offers privacy and views, due to open space which includes: the Richmond County Country Club and Golf course , the 9.5 land marked property of the former Ernest Flagg Estate, which includes private residences and St. Charles seminary; the Greenbelt park land which includes St. Francis Novitiate. Winding roads and the nearby private academy, Staten Island Academy, offer charm and complementary insituions in the many residential neighborhood.


Streets such as Benedict Road, Circle Road and Buttonwood, have grand homes of various styles and ages. Newer mansion alongside classic mansions are found side by side, on lots from 100by 100 to much larger in size. From authentic Ernest Flagg homes, English manor-inspired homes called the Copperflagg Estates, to the “Godfather” style and everything in between can be found or built on Todt Hill.


· Most notably, the wedding scene from the original Godfather movie was filmed at 57 Carlton Place, located off Ocean Terrace.


· 74 Buttonwood Road, a 12,000-square-foot brick Colonial mansion on a 37,000-square-foot lot that sold for $3.5 million in 2006,.ecords. The mansion has 14 rooms and six fireplaces, and sits on terraced, park-like grounds.


· The Ernest Flagg Palm House, at 63 Flagg Court. The home, a 4,095-square-foot Norman French Tudor, is snuggled onto 10,000 square feet of leafy acreage and sold for about $1.825 million, according to public records.

The 135 Flagg Place, the Richmond County Country Club is housed in an expansive Renaissance revival style mansion. Originally the named “Effingham”, Mr. Junius Brutus Alexander had the home built in 1860, and it was later expanded and owned by the Meyers family.  Alexander was a wealthy cotton grower from the South who a summer home on Staten Island to escape the long hot summers in the South. (AIA Guide 4
th Edition).


The Country Club was established in 1897.



Todt Hill also includes the private seminary of St. Charles Seminary which is offers open space and includes  a portion of the former estate of renowned architect Ernest Flagg, known as “Stone Court“. The seminary owns the former home of Ernest Flagg, which is a NYC Landmark. There are several landmarked buildings which were originally part of “Stone Court”. A total of 9.5 acres are designated  NYC Landmarked properties in the early 1980s.


Several buildings which were originally part of Stone Court are accessible from Coventry Road. They include the following buildings which were adaptively reused and transformed into private residences. The Copper Flagg Estates includes the adaptively reused buildings, South Gatehouse, Stable and Palm house, in 1987 by architect Robert A.M. Stern.


· The South Gatehouse at 79 ½ Flagg Court ,on the northern side of Flagg Court.


· The water tower at 96 Flagg Court.


· The former Stable at 79 Flagg Court, north side.


· The former Palm house  at 61 Flagg Court, Northeastern side


Vacant property which was once part of the Flagg Estate was developed as the “Copper Flagg Estates”, with new  residences  built in 1987-88 , adjacent to the NYC land marked buildings. These “newer” homes were restricted in style and size, in order to complement the existing land marked buildings. This area also offers an English style garden which was created as common open space for the residents. The garden area was the original site of a pool for the Ernest Flagg Estate.


These private residence built on the land marked site by Architect, Robert A.M. Stern,  include, 15, 16, 27, 39, 51, and 71 Flagg Court.


Outside the landmark site, 13 homes were constructed with now “style” or size restrictions, except for zoning. There is unmistakable contrast to  the adaptively reused structure bu Ernest Flagg and Robert A.M. Stern. The “newer” homes by Robert A.M. Stern, include, 60, 61, and 81 Copperflagg Lane and 255 Flagg Place,circa 1987.


· 15 and 25, Copperleaf Terrace


· 24, 36,48,60,76,88,100 Copperflagg Lane circa 1987-88.


In part these homes were designed by Robert A.M. Stern, and the architectural firms of  Calvanico Associates, Charles M. Aquavella, DiFiore and Giacobbe, Joseph Morace.


There are also five Ernest Flagg Cottages found adjacent to the Estate, each one differing in elevation, and plan, but constructed from local serpentine stone in the ’rubble mosaic’ style, Ernest Flagg is uniquely known for. The AIA NYC Guide, describes these cottages as “ Flagg designed, built and sold a number of picturesque cottages adjacent to Stone Court on lands owned by his Flagg Estate Company. Each has a pitched roof, hooded brick chimneys, various size dormers and  are unmistakably Flagg designs.


· Main cottage at  45 Entry Road, which is west of Flagg Place, circa 1916-1918


· Bowcot, at 95 West Entry Road, west of Flagg Place borth side, built circa 1916-1918.


· Wallcot at 285 Flagg Place, northwest side  built in 1927.


· Hinkling Hollow at 309 Flagg Place, northwest side, circa 1924


· Paul Revere Smith House, circa 1924 at 143 Four Corners Road, between Richmond and Benedict Roads, north side.