RANGER HALL OF FAMER SELLS for $1.075 Mil; And His Wife Sees A Business Opportunity

 

 

By: Blair Golson

Published: 8/25/2003

 

 

 

For the 18 years between 1960 and 1978, New York Ranger Hall-of-Famer Rod Gilbert dazzled New Yorkers with his record-shattering goal tallies. These days, Mr. Gilbert is hoping to dazzle New Yorkers with the Upper East Side apartment that his wife gave a triple-mint renovation. The Gilberts' showpiece, a 39th-floor, three-bedroom condo at 1623 Third Avenue, recently hit the market for $1.075 million. "My husband loved living in the building," said Mr. Gilbert's wife, Judy, who owns the advertising agency Christy MacDougall Mitchell Bodden. "There's a pool and a gym that he used almost every day."

 

Mr. Gilbert broke or equaled 20 team scoring records during his career, notching 1,021 points over 1,065 games. In 1979, he was the first Rangers player to have his jersey retired. For 12 years, the hockey great and his wife had been renting an apartment two floors above the one they're currently selling. Earlier this year, when the building converted from a rental to a condominium, the Gilberts exercised their option to sell their rights to the apartment they'd been renting. They then moved into a spread on East End Avenue that they had purchased a few years earlier. Three weeks before closing on the sale of their rights, however, they were presented with an opportunity to stay put in the building. A resident of the tower who lived two floors below the Gilberts offered to sell them the rights to his apartment. And even though they had already decided to move to East End Avenue, they took their neighbor up on his offer. "The building is so addictive that my husband regretted having sold our apartment, even though we already had one at East End Avenue to move into," Ms. Gilbert said.

 

At that point, the plan was to move back into 1623 Third Avenue as soon as they had finished renovating the lower-floor apartment they just picked up. But the prospect of moving all those boxes back into 1623 from East End Avenue was just a little too daunting for the Gilberts. "It took us four months to pack up all our stuff, and when we got [to East End Avenue], my husband decided he didn't want to move again," said Ms. Gilbert. "It was the arduous move that made him change his mind." So instead of moving back to the building they had lived in for the last 12 years, they decided to stay put. And as it turned out, their East End Avenue purchase ended up yielding an unexpected business opportunity for the Gilberts. Before they moved into their East End Avenue place, they had been renting it out. One of the people who came by to check it out was Mets pitcher Tom Glavine, whom Mr. Gilbert knew through his sports connections. A real-estate broker remarked to Ms. Gilbert that given her husband's renown, they had a unique opportunity to reach out to athletes in need of lodging. Thus did Ms. Gilbert launch the Home Team, a concierge and real-estate referral service for athletes. It's not yet incorporated, but Ms. Gilbert is already sending out brochures to the Rangers and the Knicks. "It was an outgrowth of being married to Rod, and marketing," she said.

 

Although there's no hockey memorabilia in the eighth-floor condo at 1623 Third Avenue-not surprising, seeing that they never moved in-Ms. Gilbert did give the 1,371-square-foot place a major renovation, including a California kitchen with a SubZero refrigerator and a third bedroom with pocket doors. "It's fully furnished," Ms. Gilbert said. "I made it like a model apartment."  .... Loy Carlos of the Corcoran Group ha(s) the listing.