666 Post St. “The Devil’s Tower”
by Seana Miracle
The Crown Towers Apartment building on Post Street manages to command one’s attention by it’s striking blood red color alone, but this color choice also tends to raise a few eyebrows when viewed in context with the address: 666 Post St. This has led to the Crown Towers being alternately referred to as “The Devil’s Tower,” but rest assured, the uncanny number and color symbolism was accidental, and any connection to Satan is purely in the mind of the beholder.
When the original building was built by architect John C. Hadlek in 1926, it was a plain vanilla color, and it’s “crown” was more ornate and illuminated at night by floodlights. The blood red paint job was added much later.
According the homeowner’s association, the color is called “Downing St. Red,” and was chosen by popular vote to represent a connection to the British Crown. The color “Downing St. Red” refers to the traditional color of the British government’s “red boxes,” which contain the Queen’s most important documents.
The Red Box is a time honored British tradition. Every day the Queen receives all her important papers in a leather bound, lead lined, locked box. The red boxes have been made by the same leather maker since the early 1800’s, and their design has not changed in over 150 years. However, with recent advances in technology they are now being phased out in favor of smartphones.
Red boxes are made of pine, then lined with lead and black satin. The lock is placed on the bottom, opposite the hinges and handle to ensure the box is locked before being carried. The box is then covered in a red dyed ram’s leather and embossed with the Royal Cypher.
The Crown Tower at 666 Post St. is basically designed as a giant “red box.” It is painted in the traditional red and black colors associated with Downing St., and has its own royal cypher monogram on the entryway carpet. The interior is designed to evoke a medieval castle and a features woodwork ceilings, a vaulted door, medieval style tapestries, and a custom “Crown Towers” coat of arms on the wall.
Apartments at the Crown Towers are several hundred thousand dollars each, depending on the square footage and what floor you live on. For instance, a one bedroom apartment on the second floor is listed at about $328,000, while the same size apartment on the 6th floor, recently sold for $766,600. The penthouse apartment, a small one bedroom which features a wraparound 2,000 square foot terrace, recently hit the market with an asking price of $869,000. The Crown Towers is thus aptly named, and painted an appropriate color, in a conscious effort to associate itself with the time honored traditions of the ruling elite.