About Michael Gross

Michael Gross, one of America's most provocative non-fiction writers, is the author of the New York Times bestsellers House of Outrageous Fortune and Model, as well as 740 Park and Rogues' Gallery. His last bestseller, Unreal Estate, is being developed as a TV series by Oscar-winner Joel Silver. His journalism has appeared in The New York Times, New York, Vanity Fair and many other publications.

April 17 2014

Someone can talk for a horse, of course

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Nice to see that all of New York’s newspapers have finally joined the crusade to save New York’s venerable Central Park carriage horses. Though some only started paying attention once public opinion swung against newish Mayor Bill DeBlasio, one, the New York Post, has been on the side of the horses and those who love them all along. Claiming originality is always a tricky business, but I started beating the pro-carriage horse drum here back in 2009, with my post, “It’s Parkingtown, Jake,” which revealed that the primary group agitating against the horses had itself broadly hinted that its real agenda was real estate, a special interest of this blog–original reporting that has been repeated frequently (and frequently… Continue reading

April 14 2014

House of Outrageous Fortune Celebrated at 15CPW


Last week, Ranan and Tamar Lurie threw open the doors of their tower apartment at Fifteen Central Park West to celebrate the appearance of House of Outrageous Fortune on the New York Times Bestseller List. The party was co-hosted by Wendy J. Sarasohn and Avenue Magazine. Click the thumbnails to see the headless horsemen of the house of outrageous fortune in all their glory. The photos are by Rose Hartman. Continue reading

April 13 2014

Back East

Gripepad has been understandably obsessed with the West Side (and one building there in particular) of late. But life goes on and this month’s Avenue magazine features the latest Unreal Estate column on a carriage house built for the founder of Remington Typewriter. Listed when the column was written, it is already in contract, but that doesn’t mean you can’t look. Continue reading

April 9 2014

Dan Loeb hedges his bet

Noted without comment: Hedgie superstar Dan Loeb‘s email campaign (with fellow financier Barry Rosenstein) to banish a planned House of Outrageous Fortune book party from the building that’s the book’s subject, Fifteen Central Park West, failed on Monday. He backs off in Richard Johnson’s column in tomorrow’s New York Post, claiming through a spokesperson that he had nothing to do with the emails that bore his name, and wondering why he wasn’t invited to the party. Here’s why. Continue reading

April 8 2014

“Filled with inside stuff,” says David Patrick Columbia of New York Social Diary

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Writing in today’s New York Social Diary
, David Patrick Columbia says House of Outrageous Fortune is “filled with inside stuff on the people and their houses and their spouses and their louses. Michael is highly skilled at delivering what is called gossip by some, but most frequently fact (and eventually history) known by others-in-the-know. His delivery is literary but tabloidal enough to keep you turning the pages for more.”
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April 5 2014

#HOOF has “the best dirt,” says New York Magazine

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My favorite alma mater, New York Magazine, highlights some of the juicier tid-bits from House of Outrageous Fortune in this story by S. Jhoanna Robeldo. Meantime, the New York Post reports that investors in Sotheby’s are giving 15CPW’s chief resident party-pooper Daniel Loeb bad reviews. Continue reading

April 4 2014

Another rave review from the New York Times

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“Michael Gross, America’s answer to Robin Leach, takes another gossip-laden bite out of the upper crust in his dishy ‘House of Outrageous Fortune: Fifteen Central Park West, the World’s Most Powerful Address’,” writes Sam Roberts in Sunday’s New York Times. “What’s remarkable is the degree of access Mr. Gross was granted or finagled, a reflection that ego has no bounds.” Continue reading

April 3 2014

“Required reading.” –The Hampton Sheet

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“Michael Gross spares no details as he dishes the dirt in this real estate tell-all,” write Vicky Kelsey in the new issue of Hampton Sheet. “But 15CPW isn’t home to celebrities alone: The vast roster of inhabitants spans the entire globe, from Russian oligarchs and property magnates to top executives from Google, Citigroup, and Goldman Sachs. Regardless of their profession, they all have one thing in common—insane amounts of money—and Gross gives us an inside peek at just what those mountains of moolah can buy….Gross gives us a vivid portrait of a New York divided between old money and new, skillfully and intellectually chronicling a secret history of America’s greatest city—-required reading for all New Yorkers.” Continue reading

Airport guy seeks to fly from 15CPW with $4.6 million profit

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One frustration in writing House of Outrageous Fortune was that it had too many wealthy apartment owners, and to make a readable book, I couldn’t name them all. Here’s an opportunity to name-check two of the missing. In what appears to be the first attempt to sell a Fifteen Central Park West apartment for the fourth time, Fernando Chico Pardo, Chairman of the Board of Grupo Aeroportuario del Sureste, which operates airports in Southeast Mexico, has listed apartment 9G in the rear of 15′s tower for $17 million. He bought it for $12.4 million early in 2011, and subsequently rented it out. Its original owner, John Ridley, wrote the screenplay for 12 Years A Slave. Owner #2 is a mystery. Pardo owns the apartment through… Continue reading

April 2 2014

The rich get richer…again

Citigroup founder and spiritual father of the Great Recession Sandy Weill has gone into contract to sell his servant’s apartment at 15 Central Park West for more than three times what he paid for it, writes Richard Johnson in tomorrow’s New York Post. He bought for less than a million–a substantial discount off the official asking price–and sold for about $3 million, Johnson reports. Continue reading

La Repubblica likes House of Outrageous Fortune–but not what it represents

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Writing in Monday’s La Repubblica in Italy, about a book he jokingly retitled House of Exaggerated Fortunes, Angelo Aquaro wrote, “No, 15CPW is not the name of a robot from Star Wars, but when will we at last go to war against the stellar injustices of this land, when will we manage to defy–Ah, Hamlet!–’The slings and arrows of outrageous fortune’?” Continue reading

March 27 2014

Warming up to Dan Loeb

Finance blogs Business Insider and Valuewalk both pick up a Dan Loeb tid-bit from House of Outrageous Fortune today about how Loeb lost a fight with neighbor moms when he tried to keep the condo’s 75-foot-long swimming pool temperature on the chilly side. According to Page Six, Loeb (who refused repeated requests for an interview for the book) has also declared jihad against the book. Maybe he should just chill himself. Continue reading

March 26 2014

Outrageous news: It’s a New York Times bestseller!

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House of Outrageous Fortune comes on the New York Times bestseller list at #20 on April 6th. Continue reading

#HOOF a bestseller

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Just learned House of Outrageous Fortune came on the New Atlantic Indie Bestseller List last week at #10 after just one week on sale. Continue reading

Al Jazeera America’s David Schuster interviews Michael Gross about House of Outrageous Fortune

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March 25 2014

“A who’s who of titans,” says Business Insider

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“Michael Gross goes behind the scenes to tell the complete story of Fifteen,” writes Julie Zeveloff of Business Insider in 15 Outrageous Facts About 15 Central Park West, The World’s Most Powerful Address. “From the building’s inception …to the battle over its unusual facade to the sparring among its strong-headed tenants, Gross makes the case that the building is deserving of its description as the world’s most powerful address. Anyone fascinated by the history of luxury real estate in New York City — or the lives of the city’s richest and most powerful people — should find the time to read Gross’ book.”
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At long last, $100 million?

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Arthur and Will Zeckendorf, developers of Fifteen Central Park West, have announced plans to market a $100 million penthouse at their next tower, 520 Park Avenue (rendering at right), a deal many years in the making, many details of which were first revealed in House of Outrageous Fortune. Read the Real Deal’s report on it here. Could this be the first NYC $100 million sale I predicted in the last issue of Departures? Only time will tell. Continue reading

March 24 2014

Message in an Apartment: More on Sting’s 15CPW Fling

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As noted here last week, a publicist for the musician known as Sting (or Der Stingle, as I like to think of him, in tribute to an earlier crooner, the late Bing “Der Bingle” Crosby), took exception to the claim of a building employee, recounted in the first printing of House of Outrageous Fortune and since corrected, that the former Police man installed a private elevator in his Fifteen Central Park West duplex. Further research reveals more about that mythical yet apparently significant elevator. In fact, Sting removed an elevator that originally came with his apartment. Amazon’s Look Inside preview of the year-old book Shelton, Mindel & Associates: Architecture and Design reveals that and lots more about Sting and wife… Continue reading

March 23 2014

Pulitzer Prize-winner Manuela Hoelterhoff on House of Outrageous Fortune

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“Michael Gross, an author with a delicate appreciation for bloated egos and wealth, makes them glitter in ‘House of Outrageous Fortune: Fifteen Central Park West, the World’s Most Powerful Address.’ The intersecting strands of money, politics, greed, taste, ambition shine brightly.” Manuela Hoelterhoff, Bloomberg News Continue reading

March 21 2014

#HOOF in the news


Spring has sprung and Bloomberg News is blossoming with reports about House of Outrageous Fortune. Pimm Fox‘s Taking Stock segment (above) aired yesterday and today, Bloomberg’s Manuela Hoelterhoff has an interview with the author. And then there’s Dan Loeb, (the “famously fiery hedge fund hotshot,” in the words of Emily Smith of Page Six), who is apparently shorting the book’s stock. Just another morning at the Hedgie Hive! Continue reading