We knew that the Material Girl wasn’t going to get the nearly $20 million that she last asked for her sprawling pad on 41 Central Park West—brokers told the Wall Street Journal last week that it sold for “considerably less”—but it’s still sad to see the pre-war beauty fall short: her co-op ended up closing for $16 million, according to city records.
The apartment itself may have been fit for the queen of pop, but the building does not the kind of royal pedigree that fetches top dollar in the Manhattan real estate market. Despite its Central Park West address, Harperley Hall (if that looks like one too many e’s to you, the New York Times sympathizes—they omit the last one) is not one of the avenue’s signature structures, and was intended to be artists’ studios; Madonna had to combine three units to create her palatial 6,000-square foot spread.
While Madonna’s fame may have elevated the stature of the building (in 2003, one broker guessed that the mere presence of the Queen of Pop boosted the value of the buildings’ units by 25 percent), it wasn’t quite the lift that she or her brokers, Adam Modlin of the Modlin Group and Arabella Greene Buckworth of Brown Harris Stevens expected—the combo was originally listed for $23.5 million. (Still, not bad compared to the $6.8 million she listed it for in 1996.)
The buyers—Anju Murari-Narula and her husband, hedge funder Deepak Narula (his mortgage fund made gains of 37.8 percent in the first 10 months of 2012, and 23.6 percent in 2011, so he must have bargained down the price just for fun)—are picking up quite a unique apartment. The Arts and Crafts-style building, rare for New York and the Art Deco-littered Central Park West, houses the Christopher Ciccone-designed apartment (yes, her brother does her interior design).
Not all of the building’s apartments were well maintained, but this one boasts original leaded-glass doors and a “series of Moorish pointed arches” throughout the luxurious bathroom (filled nightly with the blood of virgins to maintain the never-aging pop star’s figure). The purple walls and curtains are still stuck in the ’90s—“I love the office because I can use my fax machine and look at my Picasso at the same time,” she declared for a 1991 Architectural Digest piece on the apartment—but those feeling a bit less regal will find the changes easy to undo.
Meanwhile, the neighbors are probably pleased that Madonna has moved out of the apartment (she upgraded from a three-apartment combination to a three-townhouse, $45 million combination on the Upper East Side back in 2009). The gym, wrote AD, was “completely sound-proofed” because, in the words of her brother, “Madonna likes to feel the music,” but that wasn’t enough to stop her neighbors from suing in 2011—apparently, the pop star practiced what she preached and turned up the radio.