This East Village penthouse looks like a Nantucket cottage in the sky

If you’ve ever stood at the corner of East 1st Street and First Avenue and looked up, chances are you noticed a shingled, Nantucket-like cottage perched atop the corner building at 72 East 1st Street and thought, what the heck is that?

Well now, lucky ducks, we can now tell you, because the penthouse unit that includes that cottage has just hit the market, asking $3.5 million.

“I think people in the East Village have wondered about this place for a long time,” said Nick Gavin of Compass, who is listing the property along with Josh Doyle.

To answer your questions, the property is the creation of the late sculptor Henry Merwin Shrady III and his wife, Gale Barrett Shrady. They bought the entire building around 1980 and fixed it up, selling off three other units in the building, while keeping this one — which spans the fourth and fifth floor plus the terrace unit– for themselves.

Clocking in at 2,736 square feet, the property has a total of four bedrooms and three and a half bathrooms. It is currently configured as two separate units that are being sold together (the fourth and fifth floors make up one unit, and the cottage apartment is the other), though the listing notes they can easily be converted into one mega-unit.

The duplex has a living area on one side, plus an artist’s studio with double-high ceilings and a private terrace on the other. The whole place is “kind of like a mini house in a condo,” Gavin says, and from the listing photos it certainly looks homier than your standard penthouse, with two fireplaces and a real wooden staircase. We’d certainly be happy to move in.