Project Tour / Gut Renovation & Combination

Eric & Allie's Upper West Side Project

Meet the Owners

Eric and Allie are a professional couple with a growing family who wanted to gut-renovate and combine two adjacent apartments in Manhattan's Upper West Side.

Why renovate? We are a growing family in desperate need of more space, hence the decision to combine apartments.

Project goals: We really wanted a sophisticated apartment that feels more like a home than a normal NYC apartment while also being kids friendly and functional.

Biggest concern before renovating: Number one was overruns (on both project timing and costs) and secondly the quality of work itself.

Biggest challenge: A potential redesign after demolition work because of the location of an invisible gas riser (even the building itself didn't know it was there).

Best bit of advice: Go with your gut. If something doesn't feel right or sound right ask the question and keep open lines of communication with your team. The more you are in constant contact the better everyone is at resolving issues or avoiding them completely. 


How did we do?

0 = Strongly Disagree, 5 = Neutral, 10 = Strongly Agree

  • Bolster's Website and Process was easy to use and follow (10)
  • We enjoyed following the Bolster Process for our renovation (10)
  • We felt confident conducting business with Bolster and our project team (10)
  • Bolster's Website and our project team kept all promises made to us (10)
  • We were able to get the information we needed quickly from Bolster (10)
  • We were able to count on the information we received from Bolster (10)
  • The information Bolster provided us with was valuable (10)
  • We feel like we obtained value for money on our renovation with Bolster (10)
  • The quality of our finished home equals or exceeds our expectations (10)
  • We will use Bolster for our next renovation (10)

0 = Not likely, 5 = Neutral, 10 = Very likely

  • How likely are you to recommend Bolster to a friend? (10)

Owner Satisfaction

How is this calculated?


Location: Upper West Side, Manhattan

Size: 1,970 Sq. Ft.

Type: Mid century co-op 

Rooms: 4 bed, 3 bath



Type: Design & Build

Budget Range: $750K to $1M

Scope: Combination and gut renovation of two one-bedroom apartments and a studio apartment. The single renovated apartment has a state of the art kitchen, a level 5 quality finish and custom millwork throughout. 

Duration: 26 weeks

Team: Architect  Agustin Ayuso, Specialist Anna Karp, General Contractor Aaron Borenstein.


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"Bolster was the missing link on our project– their process was able to show us the decisions driving our costs and the levers we had at our disposal to control those costs. From there, we were able to make the right decisions for our home."


My wife and I began our apartment combination project with little to no experience in remodeling or construction of any kind.  We had talked to many friends and relatives that had gone through similar projects and everyone had advice and stories to tell.

Although we were receiving bids from very reputable contractors, including several that our friends and building had recommended, we felt like there was something missing - we are two relatively educated professionals that don't mind asking questions to get the answers we need to make decisions, however we felt like due to the lack of transparency involved in the process, we didn't even know the right questions to ask.

We were already down the path of receiving and reviewing several bids from general contractors (not to mention the sub-contractor bids for electrical and plumbing work) when a friend introduced Bolster.  After the first conversation with Bolster about our project, we knew they were the missing link that not only tied together the entire project but provided a level of transparency and professional knowledge that immediately put us at ease with a massive project ahead.

We felt like for the money we were spending, to have a scientific process and team of knowledgable professionals on our side - all looking out for our best interests - we couldn't have been in better hands. The way Bolster was able to quickly hone in on our concerns about the lack of transparency and seemingly lack of control of the process - and solve for those issues was a huge reason why we signed up with bolster.

Bolster was able to dissect the multiple bids and show us in plain English where our costs were being driven by decisions we were making and what levers we had at our control to control those costs and to be able to then make the right decisions.  In addition we feel now have professionals with industry knowledge that we can ask questions of and know that we are getting good advice.

– Eric Boester


Project in the press