Getting Your Feet Wet
If there is one thing The Observer takes seriously, it is cold feet. Read More
In November 2009, the German art collector Udo Brandhorst agreed as part of a child custody agreement with his former mistress, the art dealer Venetia Kapernekas, to put his Soho apartment—then valued at $5 million—in the name of the couple’s daughter. It’s unclear whether the third-floor condo at 104 Wooster Street that sold earlier this month for $5.5 million—a touch shy of the $6.25 million ask—is that same apartment, but the seller, according to city records, was most assuredly Mr. Brandhorst himself. The property, which was listed with Meg Siegel at Sotheby’s, has passed into the hands of the mysterious and comically-named Makwooster LLC, which sounds like a front for a comic book villain.
This past summer, my family spent three months in NYC, and my most vivid memory from that time came from watching my daughter run over to a group of little blonde girls in Soho’s Vesuvio Playground. We were new to the park, of course, and the girls were surrounding some piñata spoils. “Oh, those look good!” my daughter gushed, crouching down to join their huddle.
“No they’re ours! You can’t have them,” snapped the birthday girl, folding her arms around what appeared to be ring pops.
The Prada flagship store in Soho—oh, you know, that $40 million block-size Rem Koolhaas-designed imposition smothered in black glass that opened just weeks after 9/11—is not the place one wanders into expecting a quiet reading from established novelists.
And yet, against all odds, the temple to Italian couture staged such an event last week, even Read More
It seems somehow fitting that the Japanese-born conceptual artist Arakawa, who once outfitted a Long Island house with “level changes meant to induce the sensation of being in two places at once; windows that seemed too high or too low… and an absence of doors”—according to his obituary in The New York Times—kept a home with an elevator shaft containing a non-working elevator. That domicile, a six-story townhouse located at 124 West Houston Street, has just hit the market for the first time since 1967.
The asking price, however, is very 2013—Warburg Realty’s Gordon Roberts and Eastern Consolidated hope that the property can fetch $22.5 million.
When Colette Whitney sets to work, it is generally to improve upon the unfortunate—or at least unsalable—tastes of her clients. A home designer and stager of interiors by trade, Ms. Whitney, the proprietress of an advisory firm that bears her name, is “trusted by top realtors” to swiftly move “hard-to-sell”—read: unattractive—properties without imposing onerous investments on sellers, according to The Franklin Report. So when it came time to prepare her keyed-elevator loft in the co-op building at 537 Broadway for market, we can only imagine that she knew just what to do.
THERE GOES THE NEIGHBORHOOD
Lure Fishbar, the subterranean Soho restaurant where media elites sup side-by-side with Hollywood celebrities, will live to serve lobster tail another day. Lure, lodged beneath the Prada store on the corner of Mercer and Prince, has signed a new 10-year lease, as reported by Eater earlier today.
Paint it Black
In New York, the commonly accepted wisdom is that art galleries tend to gravitate to gritty up-and-coming areas thick with bohemians, artists and hipster hangers-on. But a new study released by the University of Southern California’s Lusk Center for Real Estate claims just the opposite: Galleries open in high-end Manhattan neighborhoods that house the kind of wealthy consumers likely to buy art, not the people making it.
“These findings counter the common and somewhat romantic perception that galleries locate in gritty artist communities,” assistant professor Jenny Schuetz, who co-authored the study with Lusk Director Richard Green, wrote. “Similar to jewelry, furniture and antique districts, most galleries cluster near affluent potential art buyers, rather than the artists themselves.”
The neighborhood profile that attracts art galleries, the study asserts, “is consistent with luxury retail.”
Some women are so focused on trying to conceal their blemishes that they forget to conceal their crimes.
Aspiring shoplifter Katherine Krukowski, 33, was busted last Thursday snatching a cool $2,739 worth of products from a Soho Sephora, according to DNAinfo. Her fiendish beauty plot was foiled when security guard at 555 Read More
There’s no doubt that the Sunbright Hotel in Chinatown is a dump. Billed as a single room occupancy, the lodgings fall short in the “room” department, packing tenants into 5-by-7-foot metal cubicles topped by a chickenwire enclosure, as reported by the Post, which recently exposed the horrible conditions at the building.
“Roaches, bedbugs, fleas and other vermin infest the building. Hot hallways reek of rotting trash, sweat and urine,” wrote the Post, describing the pest-plagued, overcrowded residence, where more than 100 men share the same communal bathroom. And, after leaving its readers horrified, the tabloid scored something of a coup: mayoral candidate Bill Thompson visited and expressed his shock and outrage.