Pretty in pink
This small but swank Gold Coast apartment has timeless appeal.
Rebecca Halpern says she’s lived east of Clark Street, north of Oak Street and south of North Avenue for most of her life. “Not a walk goes by that I don’t run into someone I know, and I love that close-knit feel,” says the 32-year-old TV producer and writer, who’s produced series for the History Channel, Discovery Channel, CBS Sports and more (she’s currently working on an episode of CNBC’s American Greed, about computer hackers).
Halpern’s gracious one-bedroom apartment in a classic, 12-story Benjamin Marshall–designed building (built in 1911) at the north end of the Gold Coast is her first home purchase, and she relishes every square inch. After Halpern bought the place in 2008 (becoming the building’s youngest resident), a four-month renovation commenced, the goal of which was to maximize storage space and create a kitchen that’s more functional than its size lets on. Halpern had always admired the building, and when she saw the lush treetop view of Lincoln Park out her soon-to-be bedroom window, she was immediately sold. “Vintage apartments have slightly higher maintenance costs, but I knew the value would never go down because one-bedroom units in this building are so rare,” she says.
Halpern likes to entertain but never hosts a dinner party for more than six because she says cooking for a big group in her kitchen is next to impossible. Still, at cocktail parties for up to 30, it’s proved to be the perfect bar. “Guests are usually surprised at how many people I can squeeze in here,” Halpern says. “Despite its small size, the apartment has an open layout that’s really great for entertaining.”
When she’s home alone, Halpern relaxes in the living room of her tidy, stylish pad, sipping her early morning coffee while watching the sunrise over the lake. “The view isn’t huge, but I get just enough of a sliver that I can still see the sun,” she says. “And, at around 5pm, a hot pink glow is cast around my bedroom and kitchen, which is just so cool. The light shining through the venetian blinds creates a graphic effect on the kitchen wall.”
The overall vibe of her Gold Coast oasis is feminine and calming, youthful but chic. “Most of my work focuses on violent crime, white-collar crime, and gang violence,” says Halpern, whose unintimidating stature and appealing sprinkle of freckles often work in her favor when coaxing both the good and bad guys to open up on camera. “Most people wouldn’t think a girl who interviews FBI agents and criminals for a living would live in a place like this.”