ACTRESS LIV TYLER WANTS OUT BEFORE SHE EVEN GETS IN Even before it opens its raw lofts in Soho, 30 Crosby Street has already had its 15 minutes of fame.
Liv Tyler has made it known to brokers that the apartment she intends to buy at the end of January in the new development will immediately go back on the market–if she doesn’t decide to back out of the purchase before then.
It seems that signing a contract in August for a $2.5 million apartment at the address, in a building called the Loft, has come back to haunt the 23-year-old actress, who starred in last year’s Dr. T and the Women and is now filming Lord of the Rings. The building has not even been completed yet, but it has been hyper-publicized to the point where buyers like Ms. Tyler are having second thoughts.
Lenny Kravitz and Courtney Love have also signed contracts on apartments in the building. Mr. Kravitz bought a duplex penthouse for $8 million, and Ms. Love bought a $2.6 million loft. Meanwhile, the developers have been blabbing, talking up the aromatherapy in the lobby, the titanium used on the penthouses and the wine cellar and private dining room in the basement. Then there’s the model apartment, which has doubled as a photography and film location for months.
According to brokers, all the publicity has convinced Ms. Tyler that she, in fact, does not want to live at 30 Crosby Street. Despite the 4,200-square-foot loft’s features–including antique pinewood floors, a wood-burning fireplace ensconced in French limestone, east and west exposures, hand-crafted mahogany windows, 10-foot-3-inch ceilings and a Calacata marble bathroom with nickel fixtures–Ms. Tyler’s mother, actress Bebe Buell, said, “She will not be living there.”
Ms. Tyler was vacationing in the Caribbean, and her publicist, Steven Huvane of Huvane Baum Halls, was also unavailable for comment.
“I don’t like to speak for my daughter; it isn’t fair,” Ms. Buell continued. She said that her daughter had been spooked by the attention the media has given to the building and that she wants to live somewhere more private. “Everyone has a right to their privacy,” said Ms. Buell. “There are a lot of unstable people running around.”
A source said Ms. Tyler has been stalked by a woman who used to follow her father, Aerosmith singer Steven Tyler.
“My daughter is a very, very down-to-earth person,” added Ms. Buell. “She wants her home to be the one place where she can find sanctity.”
Maybe Ms. Tyler is getting out just in time. Although the apartments will not be ready until the end of the month, the building has already been parodied by Ben Stiller as the ultimate celebrity address. After he read about the Loft in the tabloids–which reported that Claudia Schiffer, Rosie O’Donnell, Mike Piazza, Cindy Crawford and Denzel Washington had checked out apartments–Mr. Stiller decided to use the model apartment on the third floor in his next film, Zoolander , in which he plays an egocentric male model who is brainwashed into assassinating the president of Malaysia.
The apartment in the film, 4B, is the only one of the 13 new apartments that isn’t spoken for: the 4,123-square-foot loft can be yours for $3.3 million. The apartments are being sold by Corcoran Group broker Jim Brawders, who would not comment.
UPPER EAST SIDE
FORMER NOSE-JOB HEADQUARTERS BECOMES $14.5 MILLION MANSION,COURTESY OF DR. ANNE DYSON Dr. Anne Dyson may be revered in death not only as a great pediatrician and philanthropist but also as a shrewd real estate investor. On Oct. 27, the 15-room triplex maisonette at 817 Fifth Avenue–which Dyson bought last year for $5.85 million before her death from breast cancer–went on the market for $13.5 million, and the price has already been raised to $14.5 million.
For years, the triplex had been used as the office of Dr. Howard Diamond, a plastic surgeon famous in the 1970′s for giving young girls the “Diamond Nose”–a little ski jump with the bony bridge scooped out. But Dyson had a vision. Before she passed away, she completely gutted the office and renovated the space. “It’s in perfect condition,” said one broker.
The apartment features four bedrooms, six bathrooms, a double maid’s room, a library, an office, a sitting room, a large living room and two fireplaces. The 6,300-square-foot triplex also has a small terrace off the back and two floors with about 50 feet of frontage apiece facing Central Park. The third level, below ground, is recreational, with a game room. Decorated by James Coursey, the apartment received new wiring, six-zone central air conditioning, an alarm system and six phone lines. Common charges are $4,200.
“It feels like a large house,” said John FitzSimons, the lawyer handling Dyson’s estate. He said that “about a dozen people” had looked at the apartment. Brokers said that David Solomon, whose father, Howard Solomon, is the chairman of Forest Laboratories, made an offer to buy the apartment in late November. They said that his offer was accepted and that a contract would be signed shortly.
Dyson, who died at the age of 52, is survived by three children and her husband Michael Kramer, a managing editor at the Daily News . She presided over the Dyson Foundation, established by her parents Charles and Margaret Dyson in 1957, which has awarded over $58 million to health and medical causes.
Dyson resided in Millbrook, N.Y., where her brother John owns a winery.
812 Fifth Avenue
Two-bed, two-and-a-half bath, 1,900-square-foot co-op.
Asking: $2.2 million. Selling: $1.9 million.
Charges: $3,109; 48 percent tax deductible.
Time on the market: seven months.
FORGET THE FIFTH AVENUE HONEYMOON When a long-time bachelor got married about a year and a half ago, he decided he’d need more space–but he didn’t want to give up his swank Fifth Avenue address. Luckily, the apartment next door to his became available. In April of 1999, he bought it for $1.7 million and devised a plan to combine the two. Unfortunately, the board nixed that idea, and so the frustrated former bachelor decided to check out of the building altogether. He put the apartment back on the market for $2.2 million in April, but the place has been a tough sell. “It has great potential,” said the listing broker, Jason Tames of Douglas Elliman, “but what was left in there was the worst of early-70′s design,” including metallic wallpaper in the bathrooms and walls that looked like they were made out of stone. Even though Mr. Tames had the orange shag carpet ripped up before he even showed the place, the price came down $300,000 before a contract was signed. The new owners–who will do lots of renovations before moving in–had just sold a place in the suburbs. They were determined to live in this neighborhood because friends are moving right down the street.
546 East 87th Street
Four-story, 4,320-square-foot townhouse.
Asking: $2.3 million. Selling: $2.1 million.
Time on the market: five months.
WHO LET THE KIDS OUT? Back in 1968, a couple bought this 18-foot-wide townhouse located between York and East End avenues, built an owner’s duplex apartment on the first two floors and rented out the top two floors to tenants. After the husband died, his widow decided to move to an apartment in the neighborhood, and so she put this place on the market with Lydia Rosengarten of Leslie J. Garfield & Company. After five months, the townhouse was snatched up by a young couple with three children (who plan to kick the tenants out). According to Leslie J. Garfield, the family will be spared the cost of a gut renovation. “It doesn’t need it,” he said. “It’s in too good shape.” The townhouse has two wood-burning fireplaces and a story-and-a-half living room with a skylight.
CARNEGIE HILL CHEERLEADERS DOWNSCALE TO THE GOTHAM Socialite Carol McFadden and her husband George McFadden, a general partner at the investment firm McFadden Brothers, have seriously downsized their lavish lifestyle. Last summer, the McFaddens sold their 40-foot-wide limestone townhouse on East 92nd Street between Madison and Park avenues for about $17.7 million to Woody Allen. The couple had bought the 1929 building, formerly a maternity clinic, for $5.5 million in 1996 and spent millions sprucing it up.
In November, the McFaddens closed on a deal to buy a condo at the Gotham, a 1992 building at 170 East 87th Street, between Lexington and Third avenues, for $3.3 million.
The address was a little offensive to one real estate professional: “They lived in such fancy buildings before!” Prior to buying the 92nd Street townhouse, the McFaddens owned a townhouse on East 74th Street and a co-op at tony 19 East 72nd Street.
They’ve already moved into their nine-room, 3,219-square-foot condo. It has a 745-square-foot terrace, as well as four bedrooms, four-and-a-half bathrooms and a library. The condo is actually a combination of two apartments on the 19th floor of the building’s eastern side. Common charges are $1,901, and taxes are $1,637; the apartments were last purchased for $1.243 million in 1992.
The Gotham has 27 stories and 241 units. Luxury amenities including an indoor-outdoor tenants’ room, where residents can take chocolate-chip-cookie-baking lessons or sign their kids up for a trip to a museum.
Ms. McFadden, an organizer of the Citi Neighbors Coalition of Historic Carnegie Hill, is still actively protesting a controversial proposed addition, by developer Cary Tamarkin, to the Citibank branch at the northeast corner of 91st Street and Madison Avenue. The proposed tower is just south of the mansion Ms. McFadden sold to Mr. Allen, who pitched in for the cause by making a video opposing the addition. After Mr. Tamakin’s original plan for the site was rejected by the Landmarks Commission in June, he submitted a scaled-down proposal which has yet to be approved.
The McFaddens were vacationing and unavailable for comment.
19-21 Warren Street
Asking: $875,000. Selling: $875,000.
Charges: $858. Taxes: $568.
Time on the market: four months.
LOFTLUST The buildings at 19 and 21 Warren Street were constructed in 1902 as the headquarters for a manufacturer of printing equipment. In 1999, the Suen & Young Development Corp. renovated the two structures, restored their facades and turned them into loft spaces: two per floor on floors two through four and one penthouse each on the fifth and sixth floors. The lofts are all about 1,600 square feet, with ceilings that range between 9.5 and 11 feet high. The two penthouses (both still available at $1.8 million apiece) are 2,642 square feet (each one takes up the entire floor) and have private terraces with 1,175 square feet of outdoor space. The six lower lofts–including this one–sold in mid-December. Rich Shade of Douglas Elliman, who represented these buyers, said the building has attracted finance families. The building is represented by Carrie Chang and Ralph Krueger of the Corcoran Group.