After watching their townhouse sit on the market for a year without a sale, the owners of 80 Washington Place have decided to take a cue from the previous owner, composer and conductor John Philip Sousa: they’re marching on. They’ve selected a pair of new brokers—Town’s Robert Dvorin and Clayton Orrigo—and cut the ask by a million dollars.
Built in 1839, the 22.5-foot-wide Greenwich Village townhouse has only been owned by only three families over its 175-year life. Its most famous owner, John Philip Sousa, invented the sousaphone and penned marching ballads, including Marine standard “Semper Fidelis” and “The Stars and Stripes Forever,” and was also a committed technophobe. “These talking machines are going to ruin the artistic development of music in this country,” he testified to Congress in 1906, presaging the rise of Skrillex.
Weights and measures
There’s a scandalous new measurement controversy sweeping the NYC beverage world, and this time, we can’t even blame Bloomberg.
According to the weights and measures sticklers over at The New York Post, a number of city bars are shortchanging customers by serving pints in twelve to fourteen ounce glasses, instead of Read More
One of the things I’ve always liked about Rich Torrisi and Mario Carbone is that they’ve never lacked an extremely clear vision or the culinary chops to execute that vision clearly.*
At their first restaurant, Torrisi Italian Specialties, they made the case, through seven irresistible courses like fresh gnocchi made from upstate ricotta and da Read More
Master photo retoucher Pascal Dangin might make his living zapping the life-sustaining fat off of models and actresses, but it looks like he’s going to make his fortune in real estate.
Mr. Dangin bought a three-story townhouse in the West Village for $5.8 million in October 2007, right as the housing market was beginning to take a turn for the worse. After a starchitect renovation and a few years waiting for the market to return, he’s now cashing out: Mr. Dangin just sold 281 West Fourth Street to the not-so-staidly-named Crazy Snack 05, LLC for a healthy $9.55 million, according to city records (maybe someone had already snagged 281 West Fourth Street LLC?).
Warby Parker built a business out of selling glasses that are both cool and cheap, but when founder Neil Blumenthal went house hunting with wife Rachel, he selected a Greenwich Village co-op that cost a good deal more than $95. But at least the three-bedroom pad has a provenance that would delight even the most hard-hearted hipster: it belonged to the late Sesame Street script and songwriter Tony Geiss.
The Blumenthals forked over a hefty $3.5 million for the eighth-floor apartment, according to city records — $200,000 above the initial asking price of $3.3 million. That’s a lot of cookies. In the words of everyone’s favorite blue monster: Cowabunga!
New Yorkers are accustomed to sharing things; that’s the bargain of the city—the source of its energy and so many of its frustrations. We share our ceilings and walls, our commutes and our living rooms, the meals we eat and the relatively modest patches of green that constitute our nature.
Now, because of huge rent hikes throughout the city, our businesses might need to start sharing, too. New Yorkers have long mourned the disappearance of mom-and-pops, the stores and restaurants, dive bars and old haunts that gave the streets their chaotic splendor.
Washington Square United Methodist Church is no stranger to, shall we say, outré causes. From Vietnam War resisters and the Black Panthers to the Gay Men’s Health Crisis and Dykes Against Racism Everywhere, the 1860 Romanesque Revival structure at 135 West Fourth Street has been home to a who’s-who of left-wing causes throughout the years.
The building remained a bastion of radical causes until it entered the most conservative phase of its modern history: the condo conversion. The building was sold to Jon Kully and Mick Walsdorf in 2007, who then carved it into condos and rebranded it as the Novare.
Heisman trophy winner, Rhodes scholar, youngest ever brigadier general in the United States Army, Republican candidate for the U.S. Senate—not traits that one typically associates with Greenwich Village. But that didn’t stop Pete Dawkins and wife Judi from picking up a one-bedroom loft at 74 Fifth Avenue.
The fifth floor co-op in the 12-story, 1910 building—just a block from Union Square Park, a place with nary a hippie in a sight these days—was listed by Michael Johnson and Hayim Nommaz at Corcoran, and eventually sold for $1.57 million, a bit under the $1.59 million ask. Sellers Greg and Vivian Cioffi have owned the unit since at least 1997, according to city records.
The Neverending Story
As a resident of the West Village, Lee Ielpi trudged by a fence of ceramic tiles daily in the raw weeks after 9/11, one that developed a comforting presence over the next decade, transformed from an impromptu memorial to an enduring memorial. Now that they have been to a library nearby, on display for all to come see and remember that horrific day, Ielpi was fighting off tears at an unveiling this morning.
“Time does not heal the wound—it has a scab on it, and every now and then I peel it off and talk about my son,” said Mr. Ielpi, president of the September 11th Families’ Association. He lost his son, a firefighter, in the attacks. “We have an obligation to our children, to our grandchildren, to never forget. It is through education, it is through enlightenment. This is part of that process.”
Manhattanites can count on at least a few immutable facts: that it will be impossible to catch a cab at 5 p.m., that the Long Island Expressway will be a parking lot on Memorial Day and that every night at 8 p.m., Il Mulino will be so crowded that the celebrities, business magnates and politicians who frequent the famed Italian restaurant will rub elbows not only with each other, but very nearly with each other’s ossobuco.
Jerry Katzoff, who bought the iconic Greenwich Village eatery with Brian Galligan in 2001, was eating there one night when he noticed that his table’s corner was jutting through the open-backed chair of a neighboring diner.
“I felt bad. I owned the restaurant and it was going into his back. So I pulled the table and I startled the guy,” Mr. Katzoff told The Observer. “I said, ‘The table was in your back,’ and he said, ‘Are you kidding? To get a seat at Il Mulino? I don’t care what you do.’”
It’s that kind of place. It’s been that kind of place since it opened 31 years ago. Reservations are impossible to get, although regulars always seem able to swing a seat at one of the 17 tightly packed tables. (Rumors swirl of a VIP line.) George Clooney was there the other week, and so was the rapper Drake, accompanied by a sizable entourage. Tommy Mottola, Tony Bennett and Ronald Perelman are regulars. When Bill Clinton needed a place to have a tête-à-tête with Obama, he picked Il Mulino. Asked how the lunch had gone, Mr. Clinton told the Times, “It was good. It was Il Mulino, how could it not be?”