It’s official: Oil tycoon Len Blavatnik has paid exactly $50 million for his friend Edgar Bronfman Jr.’s townhouse at 15 East 64th Street, the second biggest New York townhouse deal ever.
The sales deed was filed in city records this morning, the day after iconic uptown broker Linda Stein was found murdered in her posh apartment. Upper East Side real estate always works weirdly.
Earlier this year, The Observer broke the news that Mr. Bronfman, the Seagram liquor heir-turned-music executive, who paid just $4.375 million last decade for his townhouse, would be selling it for around $51 million. In August, we wrote that a source said the buyer would be Mr. Blavatnik. It’s turned out that Mr. Blavatnik paid a few dollars shy of the $53 million mark set by the Harkness Mansion last year, which still stands as New York’s most massive townhouse purchase.
But, spectacularly, city records show that Mr. Blavatnik hasn’t taken out any mortgages on his new house, which means that he paid his friend in cash. The buyer is a board member at Warner Music Group, where the seller is chairman and CEO.
Meanwhile, in the past two years alone, Mr. Blavatnik has bought up a $27.5 million Fifth Avenue co-op and a $31.25 million mansion–one block south from the Bronfman place. Oil tycoons need their space.
As for Mr. Bronfman, his sales price is well over 11 times what he and his wife paid last decade. But they did tectonic renovations, fitting the house with a 2.5-story indoor piazza with secret stairways, a bronze-shaded waxed-steel vestibule, a master bedroom and children’s playroom with balconies, plus a glass-floored library terrace.
On this morning’s deed, the limited liability corporation that bought the townhouse is given an address at Mr. Blavatnik’s Access Industries holdings group. Calls to a company spokesperson were not returned.