160 East 65th Street (Phoenix)
One-bed, 1.5-bath, 1,000-square-foot postwar co-op.
Asking: $305,000. Selling: $305,000.
Maintenance: $1,314; 48 percent tax-deductible.
Time on the market: one week.
ONCE UPON A TIME, BEFORE TRUMP HAD TO HAVE HIS NAME ON HIS DOOR
Back in the 1970’s, Donald Trump lived in this high-rise when it was new and slick, and he was … well, can anyone really remember what he was like then? Maybe something like a Tony Manero who dreamed of shiny red granite and chrome? Despite its low-key, not-Trump-ish metal-and-brick modernism, this high-rise, which is just off Third Avenue, has at least one thing that seems totally appropriate, given who its former occupant was: It’s called the Phoenix. Mr. Trump must have rented, since the building wasn’t converted to co-op until 1984 (by which point he was living in Trump Tower). The seller of this 29th-floor apartment, who works in sales at ABC, used it for his bachelor pad. Now he’s getting married-presumably not to a platinum-blond Eastern European ski babe-and needs more room. So his broker, Marilyn Fleming, sold him a two-bedroom nearby. The buyer they found for this place was the first person who saw it. She liked the building already and had lost out on an apartment there earlier. She made an offer right away, for full price. When asked if there was anything else nice about the building, the broker said, “The cutest little dogs in town live there.” Broker: Bellmarc Realty (Marilyn Fleming); Douglas Elliman.
NANCY RICHARDSON’S SETTLEMENT IS ABOUT TO SHOOT UP BY $15 MILLION
Nancy Richardson did all right in her divorce from financier Frank Richardson after his dalliance with Kimba Wood, the U.S. District Court judge, became mortifying common knowledge. For one thing, she got the apartment. She termed the 15-room, approximately 7,000-square-foot apartment, at 820 Fifth Avenue, a “just milieu” in The New York Times. Poised at the treeline on the fifth floor, decorated impeccably with 18th-century French furniture by Henri Samuel of Paris, she then put it on the market for $15 million, “firm.” And now, according to real estate brokers familiar with the building, she has a signed contract to sell the apartment to the fashion designer Valentino, whose full name is Valentino Garavani.
The building, which is home to Warner Brothers co-chairman Terry Semel and socialite Jayne Wrightsman, among others, is one of the most coveted addresses in the city. For one thing, you’d better be worth something like 20 times the value of your apartment to get in. For another, maintenance runs in the range of $12,000 to $14,000 per month. And, real estate sources say, Ms. Wrightsman is said to hold a pretty tight rein on who gets in. Mr. Semel, for example, since he’s from the entertainment industry, was not a shoo-in; nevertheless, he was allowed to buy the Gordon Getty apartment last year for $12.25 million. In these limestone vaults of propriety, it can’t help that Valentino isn’t married, and he still has to pass the board interview. Ms. Richardson’s lawyer, Raoul Felder, did not return calls; Valentino’s spokesman had no comment.
The 65-year-old designer is reportedly mulling a zillionaire-making Ralph Lauren-style initial public offering, and his couture business is flying high. Once his designs were reserved for the likes of Jacqueline Kennedy, Elizabeth Taylor and Princess Margaret. Today, from Jenny McCarthy to Ashley Judd to Lauren Holly, it seems as if he outfits half the young starlets of Hollywood.
Maybe it’s a sign of confidence that Valentino will win the Richardson place that his apartment-the eighth floor at 2 East 70th Street-just went up for sale, for $7.2 million. It was decorated by Peter Marino, and it’s certainly more, um, affordable than Ms. Richardson’s place. One broker who’s seen it enthused, “Gee, it’s worth it. It’s beautiful.”