Exactly a month ago, The Observer reported that Xerox CEO Ursula Burns had sold her high-floor three-bedroom at the Beekman Regent on East 51st Street. It appeared she was moving to Connecticut, perhaps to be closer to headquarters. Now it turns out she was not trading in her 2004 model but upgrading it to one of 2009’s finest, the Related-developed, Robert A.M. Stern-designed Brompton at 205 East 85th Street.
Ms. Burns has just purchased a five-bedroom penthouse atop the throwback for $8.15 million, according to city records. The 3,326-square-foot spread is the largest unit in the building, and the most expensive. Befitting the head of a technology company, the pad is full of top-of-the-line tech: “Formal DR/den off windowed eat-in kitchen with maple cabinetry, 2 Viking stainless steel wall ovens, a wine cooler, Miele dishwasher and a wood paneled Sub-Zero refrigerator,” writes Corcoran broker Michael Spodek in his listing. “The fabulous master bedroom suite boasts 2 customized walk in closets with off-season clothing storage, 2 marble HS/HR baths, and glamorous fireplace.”
Four of the five bedrooms have ensuite bathrooms, and one of those can double as a library. There is north, south and eastern exposure, all with elegant floor-to-celing windows. At $2,450 per square foot, the property is certainly expensive, but also far from the record-setting prices in Stern’s renowned building on the other side of the park, 15 Central Park West. There, William Lie Zeckendorf’s penthouse went for nearly $10,000 a foot.
The penthouse was asking $8.5 million, down from $10 million when the home was first listed in April 2009–three days after it was purchased for $8.07 million.
This is not the first time the sellers, Jerry and Lucille Francesco, have had a rough go of it, either. They sued one of the city’s most powerful developers, Steve Roth, because Ms. Francesco tripped on the handicapped ramp at their previous New York home, One Beacon Court, where they owned a $2.9 million home. Mr. Roth was named in the $1 million suit because he had personally selected the paving stones. “These individuals who were trying to be masters of the universe in New York City, they don’t care about the little people,” the couple’s attorney told The Times at the time.
Meanwhile, Ms. Burns is not the only Xerox exec celebrating a new home. Armando Zagalo de Lima, president of the company’s global customer operations, just paid $4.2 million for a 24th-floor condo at 310 East 53rd Street. The three-bedroom is located in the five-year-old glassy Macklowe Tower not far from Sutton Place and was sold by Jacqueline Bikoff, who last year moved into the Dakota.