Slideshow: Gracie Mansion Move Will Mean Major Changes for de Blasios

  • Bill de Blasio’s announcement yesterday that he and his family intend to move into Gracie Mansion come January will mean major life changes for the mayor-elect.

    The stately East River-side mansion is a world away from the modest Park Slope row house where Mr. de Blasio has been living for the last 13 years.

    And while the palatial digs–complete with trompe l’oeil painted floors in the foyer, crystal chandeliers and a full-time staff of 12–are impressive, Mr. de Blasio says there are some things he’ll certainly miss about life in his longtime neighborhood.

    “We feel kind of wistful,” Mr. de Blasio told NY1 yesterday afternoon, wearing a Brooklyn sweatshirt to show his borough pride on his way to the local Y. “We feel like we’re going to miss the day-to-day life, we’re going to miss coming to the bakery, we’re going to miss coming to the Y the way we are, but we’re going to stay connected.”

    In many ways, the move will be a step up. The de Blasio’s current 11th Street row house has three bedrooms and a single bathroom all the way up on the third floor. Gracie, which got a $7 million renovation in 2002, comes with four bedrooms and a whopping eight bathrooms (including one in each bedroom and two for public use on the main floor.) While the de Blasio family has a small backyard behind their home in Park Slope, Gracie is located on 11 well-manicured acres, with sweeping views of the East River and easy access to Carl Schurz Park. And while the de Blasio’s current kitchen wasn’t large enough to accommodate a commercial film crew, the main floor at Gracie has six large sitting and entertaining rooms, lavishly decorated with classic art, stately furniture and multiple fireplaces (including the one used to film the original yule log video.)

    Still, many change will likely take some time to get used to. Unlike the White House, Gracie lacks a private kitchen and living space, aside from the upstairs bedrooms and a sitting room. That means all of the family’s at-home meals will have to be prepared in a staffed commercial kitchen and eaten in either an opulent formal dining room, complete with reclaimed scenic wallpaper from the French company Zuber, or a smaller but still formal dining room, decorated with portraits in gilded frames.

    Reporters, who were invited to tour Gracie yesterday evening by the current mayor’s press office, were not permitted access to the third floor, so Politicker was unable to inspect whether the master bedroom would accommodate Mr. de Blasio, who, at six-foot-five, is the tallest mayor in modern history.

    There will also be the emotional impact of leaving Brooklyn, which has long been a key part of Mr. de Blasio’s political, and personal identity.

    “We’ve been living in this neighborhood almost 22 years. Chirlane and I moved into the neighborhood before our kids were born, before Dante and Chiara. The house that we would be leaving for now, the house we’re leaving temporarily has been where most of their growing up occurred,” Mr. de Blasio told NY1. “So like any parents, you feel that sense of the family home and leaving that behind because something’s changed in your life. But for us, again, we’re going to keep the home, we’re going to keep owning it. We’re going to be out in the neighborhood a lot. We’re going to stay connected. Obviously, Dante’s going to continue going to school in Brooklyn.”

    Gracie has been without a family for the past 12 years, with Mayor Michael Bloomberg choosing to remain in his mufti-million-dollar town home steps from Central Park. Gracie, which has served as the official residence of every mayor since Fiorello La Guardia was turned into a “people’s home” during the Bloomberg administration, hosting approximately 150 events and welcoming 50,000 visitors a year.

    Click on the image above to start the slideshow of the new residence.

  • Moving to Gracie Mansion will be a major change for the de Blasios.

    (Photo: NYC.gov/William Waldron)

  • The de Blasio's new formal dining room at Gracie seats at least 10.

    (Photo: Jill Colvin)

  • The slightly less formal dining room where the de Blasios can take their meals.

    (Photo: Jill Colvin)

  • One of many lavish rooms at Gracie Mansion.

    (Photo: Jill Colvin)

  • One of the home's many sitting rooms.

    (Photo: NYC.gov/William Waldron)

  • Visitors must enter through a metal detector.

    (Photo: Jill Colvin)

  • One of many fire places at Gracie. This one was used to film the original yule log video.

    (Photo: Jill Colvin)

  • The home has two pianos for entertaining.

    (Photo: Jill Colvin)

  • One of the many books in Gracie Mansion's library, which includes classics by writers like Immanuel Kant, as well as Aristotle and many political biographies.

    (Photo: Jill Colvin)

  • Last: the view across the river from Gracie's backyard.

    (Photo: Jill Colvin)

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