In the city of skyscrapers, anyone with enough money can become the owner of a penthouse. But purchasing the right townhouse requires a special collector's eye. Recently, several of the best and most sophisticated townhouses in the city have been put up for sale.
And although in the current economic conditions they may not be striving for price records - for the most expensive object they are asking $72.5 million. New York Post offers a look inside the largest, most expensive and beautiful houses in New York.
There are 258 townhomes and nearly twice as many penthouses for sale in Manhattan, according to StreetEasy. Far fewer have a pedigree: illustrious architects, famous Golden Age residents and intricate surviving decoration that cannot be replicated today.
“Townhomes are a limited commodity, especially in upscale areas,” says Sandra Ripert of Douglas Elliman. “They are rare, but very interesting, and the market for them is very strong.”
When they go on sale, they set records. In 2018, the limestone townhouse at 19 E. 64th St. sold for $90 million, according to public records, a record that still stands today.
Lot number one
What happens if you build a mansion with an area of 1500 sq. meters with a design by Stanford White in front of the Metropolitan Museum of Art? 30-room mansion worth $72.5 million at 973 Fifth Avenue.
This seven-level, 10-bedroom Italian Renaissance mansion was originally built for railroad magnate Henry H. Cook. (He purchased the entire block and sold individual plots to carefully selected buyers). The project was completed in 1907, a year after White's death, and the house became one of his last projects.
At that time, Fifth Avenue was lined with mansions. But today this house stands a few steps from the cultural services of the French Embassy and the Ukrainian Institute of America. In May, after an 11-year hiatus, the house was put up for sale, and it is still miraculously preserved.
Not only is the original layout, but the limestone staircase, original leaded glass windows, two state rooms, French stained glass windows purchased by White himself, and a painted wood beam ceiling all survive to this day. Mother-of-pearl and brass buttons still control the lights, and the house also includes a cast-iron safe.
Houses next door
Nearby, half a block away (the back walls of the buildings are almost touching), a house on 4 79th East Street for $65 million. It was last sold in 1997. House with an area of 1400 sq. meters with six bedrooms, designed by C. P. H. Gilbert, commissioned by real estate and grocery magnate James E. Nicholsom.
With mahogany doors, marble floors, oak paneling and carved crown moldings, the home is full of period details. The sale is being led by Sirena Boardman of Sotheby's.
A dozen blocks later, on the corner of Madison Avenue, a house on 144 65th East Street put up for sale for $57.5 million. For 70 years, none other than David Rockefeller lived in this mansion. Built in 1924, this home is a 12-foot-wide red brick Colonial Revival home with a total area of 1150 square feet.
The home has a festive feel, thanks to the playful 2022 renovation by Steven Harris Architects and interior designer Miles Redd, adding color and bold patterns. Although the home has a contemporary style (there's even a basketball court), there's plenty of Jay Gatsby in the wood-paneled walls, undulating grand staircase and patio garden.
And finally, the largest house on the Manhattan market - located on 9 54th West Street across the street from the Museum of Modern Art. This mansion, which was built in 1896 for J.P. Morgan's cousin James J. Goodwin, has an area of 2200 square meters. meters, is the largest single-family house in the city. With a width of 15 meters, it has 33 rooms, 11 bedrooms and another 11 bedrooms for staff.
Designed by McKim, Mead & White, the building was used as the headquarters of the US Trust Company before becoming privately owned in 2009 and sitting empty. The premises were put up for sale in April.
In the conservative banking style of the house, virtually nothing has changed. All 12 fireplaces, stained glass windows and the historic layout remain in place. The dining room has a silver safe, two elevators, a bedside table and even original wallpaper. But to love this house, you have to love wood—it's just everywhere, from the paneling and carved columns to the herringbone floors. Patricia Vance and Sandra Ripert of Douglas Elliman are asking $56 million for it.