Archive for November, 2015

Turkey? Or just a failed flip?

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Reports surfaced yesterday of an epic flip fail at 15 Central Park West after the LLC that bought it last year sold for a small loss.  Sigh.  The original purchaser, pharmaceutical exec Richard Ullman, doubled his $24 million investment in the almost decade old tower.  But he actually lived there until his death.  The flipper, now out, should have known, you can’t  win ‘em all. Balloons will fly beneath its windows today.  Let’s hope they don’t deflate, too.  

Supertalls drooping? Tightening the Billionaire’s Belt

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Katherine Clark of The Real Deal’s report last week that the “irrational exuberance” among developers of apartments for the super-wealthy is waning, according to participants in a recent realty summit, seems to confirm anecdotal reports that have filtered into and through Gripepad in recent months. “The market today is very slow in terms of high-end condo sales,” Related CEO Steve Ross said. Realtors working the high end have recently whispered that sales have stalled at a certain already open-for-occupancy West 57th Street supertall tower and that the developers of others, just rising out of the ground, are wondering where all … Continue reading

Sutton Place: Sweet Suite

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Value investor Wilbur Ross has seen the future, and is betting on better days in east midtown, where the luxe district surrounding Sutton Place and Beekman Place was once the height of fashion but more recently has been forgotten if not faded. Ross has purchased a long-on-the-market 14-room duplex apartment at nearby River House, formerly owned by Arlene Farkas, initially listed at $15 million but sold at just over half that price. Ross, once the president of the board of trustees at The Dakota, currently occupies a grand penthouse at the corner of 57th Street and Seventh Avenue, in the … Continue reading

What kind of woman do you think I am? We’ve already established that. We’re just haggling over the price.

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An e-mail just received from a “strategic communications” company: “We are now accepting [sic] interviews with Bree Olsen to discuss Charlie Sheen recently announcing he is HIV positive. Olsen is enraged and says Sheen never disclosed he was HIV positive in their year long relationship. If you would like to set up an interview with Bree Olsen, either email or call me …. Olsen requires interview compensation.”

London Calling

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The battle royal between the competing dining empires of Jeremy King and Richard Caring was at the center of my story, “Who Rules The Night?” in the October issue of Departures. King created Le Caprice, The Ivy and other spots now owned by Caring. They compete with King’s newer The Wolseley, The Colony Room (pictured in a photo by Kate Martin) and others. And both men are expanding their empires. The story is now free to read online. And check back here next year for my profile of controversial developer Aby Rosen, out this week in the new issue of … Continue reading

15CPW drops a notch after seven years as NYC’s costliest building

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It was inevitable that Fifteen Central Park West would have to give up its crown as Manhattan’s most expensive building, but its seven-year run has nonetheless been impressive, and the building that finally usurped it owes it and its developers, Will and Arthur Zeckendorf, Eyal Ofer‘s Global Holdings, and Goldman Sachs, a great debt of thanks for setting the stage for the emergence of the Billionaire’s Belt that now girds fat-cat Midtown Manhattan, stretching from 15CPW at West 61st Street’ along 57th Street, past Beacon Court and on to two East Side towers by Sir Norman Foster, 50 United Nations … Continue reading

Don’t Look Back: Return of the Nineties

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In the new 40th Anniversary issue of Avenue, I mull the matter of the Nineties, and Society’s place in it. If a champagne glass falls in a forest of Vera Wangs and nobody hears it, did anyone really drop it?