Archive for November, 2005

“As rich as his subjects,” says Forbes FYI

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“Real-estate spectators, clear space on your night table: Journalist Michael Gross has opened a peephole to one of Manhattan’s most impenetrable prewar apartment buildings,” writes Taylor Antrim in Forbes FYI. “740 has sheltered dour Mayflower grandees and swashbuckling Wall Street arrivistes; Gross’s thick history gives accounts of them all, tracking along the way the shifting pedigree of America’s plutocracy. ” — Forbes FYI, December 12, 2005

Divorce! Death! Securities Fraud!

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Galleycat, mediabistro.com’s book blog, reports on the very latest goings-on at 740 Park Avenue — divorce! undivorce! death! alleged securities fraud! — and asks for a sequel. Wait for the paperback, why don’tcha?? — “Interesting Elevator Conversations, I’m Sure,” mediabistro: Galleycat, Noember 29, 2005 UPDATE: On December 1, Israel Englander of 740 Park settled a case with the Securities and Exchange Commission, agreeing that his firm, Millenium Partners, would pay fines of $180 million and Englander personally would pay $30 million for engaging in a scheme to trade in and out of mutual funds. Englander, appropriately enough, owns the apartment … Continue reading

“The cocktail-conversation book of the year,” says Palm Beach’s Shiny Sheet

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“The New York-and-Palm Beach crowd — which is no small crowd, numerically or economically — can thank Hurricane Wilma for at least one thing. The storm delayed the social season long enough for them (and us) to cozy up with 740 Park Avenue: The Story of the World’s Richest Apartment Building, the cocktail-conversation book of the year. Local bookstores can hardly keep it on the shelves.” “‘Park’ it here for juicy reading,” by Shannon Donnelly, Palm Beach Daily News, November 27,2005.

“A window on a gilded world” — The Washington Post

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The Washington Post says 740 Park reveals “75 years of American wealth as seen through the prism of this 19-story New York City cooperative that has blackballed unwanted neighbors including Barbra Streisand. Gross… sneaks the reader past the doorman.” (November 12, 2005)

“Delicious society gossip,” says Canada’s National Post

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“Members of New York’s social register, politicians, movie stars and the notorious are integral to these lascivious and even tragic stories, ones that render many tabloid articles tame by comparison.” — “The wealthiest apartment building,” by Waheeda Harris, National Post, November 24, 2005

740 Park in its Fifth Printing

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Less than four weeks after publication, the Broadway Books division of Random House announced last week that it had gone back to press for a fifth printing of 740 Park. A non-fiction bestseller from Palm Beach, Florida, to Billings, Montana, it’s in the top 40 on the American Booksellers Association’s Booksense non-fiction bestseller list, the top 100 books at Barnes & Noble (where it is the #1 bestseller in the Real Estate and Art and Architecture categories, and a top 5 bestseller in United States History), and at amazon.com (where it sits high atop the lists of bestselling books on … Continue reading

Michael Gross is “the newfound chronicler of the gilded echelons of American society ,” says Italy’s Corriere Della Sera

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“With flair a la Stephen Birminghan, the genre leader, Gross succeeds in taming habitually media-weary faces and names… Cementing Mr. Gross’s newfound status as the chronicler of the gilded echelons of American society was the parterre de roi that turned out at Georgette’s Mosbacher book launch party — with ten 740 tenants, brokerissima Alice Mason and even two board rejectees (Nancy Silverman and Leba Sedaka, Neil’s wife) on hand.” — “In questo palazzo Jackie impedi a Lee de buttarsi dal 6 piano,” by Benedetta Pignatella, Corriere Della Sera Magazine, November 13, 2005

“The Marx Brothers Meet Fatal Attraction”

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Click to hear Brian Lehrer’s interview with Michael Gross on WNYC’s The Brian Lehrer Show.

Forecast for Social Siberia: A Warming Trend

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Though one rancorous (and anonymous) resident of 740 Park Avenue planted an item with Daily News gossip columnist Lloyd Grove seeking to scare guests away from Georgette Mosbacher’s publication party for 740 Park, and condemning those who did come to “social Siberia,” many residents of the building were delighted to attend, as were top realtors and decorators who have worked there, all of them characters in the book. Among the revelers were 740 residents past and present like David Koch (at right with Michael Gross), Jessie Araskog, Ann Barish, Dasha Epstein, Tova Leidesdorf, Kay Gilman, and Diana Quasha, 740 relatives … Continue reading

“A Great Gift,” says Town & Country

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“Of all the recherche residences in Manhattan, there may be none more exclusive than 740 Park,” says Town & Country. “Writer Michael Gross takes an in-depth look at the vaunted history of the address that Rockefellers, Bouviers, Chryslers and today’s titans have called their own.” — “On the Town: Keys to the City,” Town & Country, December, 2005

“Tantalizing… intimate… engrossing… intriguing,” says Bloomberg

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Lisa Kassenaar reviews “a deeply researched book that deserves a prominent place among the social histories of 20th-century Manhattan.” — “Real Estate Porn, Complete With Greed, Lust, Names,” Bloomberg News, November 8, 2005

“Follow the Money!” — Historywire.com

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“Anyone who read and enjoyed Daniel Okrent’s Great Fortune, about the building of Rockefeller Center, or Ron Chernow’s Titan a biography of John D. Rockefeller, will love 740 Park,” says HistoryWire.com.

“An epic tale,” says the Hartford Courant. “Fascinating.”

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“The story of New York’s most exclusive residential building is anything but simple. It took a reporter and storyteller like Michael Gross to lay out the epic tale – truly, the story of American capitalism and 20th-century New York society – that is 740 Park Ave. The result is a fascinating glimpse inside the walls of the most fabulous living spaces known to man. For homeowners who enjoy the sport of keeping up with the Joneses, reading Gross’ book provides the ultimate in “aspirational dwelling” fantasy material. Imagine a co-op of such staggering private wealth that it requires applicants to … Continue reading

A “great read,” raves People

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“A gossipy history of Manhattan’s most luxurious co-op, with revealing tales about tenants including Jackie Onassis and John D.Rockefeller, Jr.” — People, November 14, 2005

A “Window on Aristocracy,” says the New York Sun

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New York’s luxury apartment industry seems to have gotten its own Bosell in Michael Gross, best-selling author and chronicler of society. Continue reading

740 Park Causes Controversy

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Ben Widdicombe’s Gatecrasher column in the Daily News says 740 Park is causing controversy at amazon.com.

“The secrets of the moneyed classes.” — New York Times

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Today, The New York Times’ Boldface crew looks back at last week’s 740 Park launch party at Lotus (see second item), and catches a whiff of something… pungent.