’08’s Biggest Apartment Offerings:
Where Are They Now?
By Max Abelson | 07/15/09 3:19pm
Late last month, the $51 million duplex penthouse at Trump Park Avenue quietly came off the market, a year after the Elliman broker Victoria Shtainer listed the 6,200-square-foot sprawl, and seven years since Mr. Trump bought the building. “We haven’t sold it,” Ms. Shtainer said this week. “The timing was not good, so I didn’t get any offers.”
That’s the story with New York’s most outstandingly lush real estate. Of the 10 properties that were asking over $45 million late last year, half are off the market without a sale, and only one has sold. But that listing, a Time Warner Center penthouse where the master bedroom suite has an office, his-and-her dressing rooms, his-and-her bathrooms, and a gym, sold for $37.5 million. Its original tag was $65 million.
And only two of the 10, the Mark‘s $60 million penthouse and the art collector Aby Rosen’s $75 million mansion at 22 East 71st Street, haven’t had price cuts. They’re both suspended in their own worlds of tremendous splendor: “If it sells this year, it will sell this year; if not, it will sell next year,” Mr. Rosen has said.
The Sloane Mansion on East 68th Street, which had been the most expensive townhouse on the market until Mr. Rosen’s townhouse came along, was pulled from the market last week. Listing broker Paula Del Nunzio, whose tag came down from $64 million to $54 million, said the house’s owners wanted to consider their options. At least one brokerage database showed Tuesday that mega-agent Dolly Lenz had apparently gotten the listing (at the same price), but a spokesperson for the house’s owners said there is no current exclusive. Ms. Lenz didn’t return messages.
But it would be odd if the townhouse’s $54 million tag didn’t come down. In January, the tag for the 14-room penthouse at 1020 Fifth Avenue was lowered from $46.5 million to $39 million, even though it had come on the market two years ago for $50 million. The same month, broker Carrie Chiang cut the price of art dealer Guy Wildenstein¹s multi-unit sprawl at the Plaza from $46.5 million to $42.4 million.
Those units are now only available separately. “How many people are buying 8,000-square-foot apartments, all cash, and are willing to undertake the work?” Loy Carlos, explained this week. A small unit is in contract to sell for somewhere between $4.4 million and $4.9 million, he said, which would be hundreds of thousands of dollars less than it cost. And Mr. Wildenstein’s biggest unit, formerly the Plaza’s Frank Lloyd Wright Suite, is asking over $3.5 million less than the $21,533,297 he paid for it.
But at least it¹s still on the market. Last year, Ms. Chiang listed the real estate heir Richard Mack’s 24,463-square-foot mansion at 4-8 East 94th Street for $59 million, which came down to $42 million in March. Records show that the house was taken off the market in June, though Mr. Carlos said Monday it would only be temporary.
That house original asking price was modest compared to the $90 million (or $15,332 per square foot) that a biomedical venture capitalist was asking last year for the 15 Central Park West duplex that he had bought for only $30 million. In April, The Observer reported that the apartment had been rented out for $75,000 per month, which means it would take 100 years for the owner to get the price he once wanted.
That condo was an unofficial listing, like the philanthropist Courtney Sale Ross’ duplex at 740 Park Avenue, a sprawl built from a 14-room and an 18-room apartment. Edward Lee Cave, the monogram-shirted broker who had let it be known last year that the co-op was quietly asking at least $60 million, said Monday that it isn’t being shown. “I must tell you, I have not had someone for it,” Mr. Cave explained. “There hasn’t been any activity over the last few months.”