Known by his colleagues as Old Ironpants, by his viewers as Uncle Walter and by the world as the Most Trusted Man in America, Walter Cronkite provided the narrative of American history for the better part of the last century. So, it is no surprise that after his July 2009 death the media struggled to continue that narrative, following every thread that the newsman left behind. One such thread was his glass-walled co-op at 870 United Nations Plaza.
A little over a week ago, New York reported that Cronkite’s three-bedroom, five-bathroom apartment was in contract and due to close any day. Well, the day has come. According to city records, the 25th-floor tower apartment sold for $2.5 million to Citi Private Bank managing director Georgia S. Mouzakis Tavlarios—and you thought Greeks were in trouble.
The apartment was appropriately listed by Fox Residential’s Joanna Simon, the glimmering, glamorous broker by day, mezzo-soprano by night. (Well, not exactly: Ms. Simon took up real estate after retiring from the stage, but she was a formidable songstress in her day, much like her sister, Carly.) Ms. Simon, who also resides in the storied glass towers, was Cronkite’s companion in his later years, after the passing of their respective spouses.
Ms. Simon politely declined to comment for this article but described the apartment to The Observer late last year, when it first came on the market: “He has leather chairs and big desks, and a lot of big couches and things like that. It looked like Walter.” She suggested that the buyer may want to consider kitchen and bathroom renovations—“It has an early American look, and that’s not very fashionable these days.” She also proposed the apartment be returned to a four-bedroom unit from its current configuration as a two-bedroom with a double-size master bedroom suite (with his and her baths, naturally), the second bedroom used by Cronkite as a library and the third bedroom serving as a maid’s room.
The corner apartment with south and west facing views of the East River through floor-to-ceiling windows, received a landslide of press when it went on the market for $2.995 million in December. That likely contributed to its swift sale—it entered contract in January, after being on the market only four days. Ms. Simon told New York that the buyers, who “felt a reverence for his spirit and reputation” planned to keep Cronkite’s office intact, just the way it was.
And that’s the way it is.
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