Bought in the ’70s for $170K, showbiz couple’s massive Upper West Side townhouse asks $20M

Posted On Fri, September 22, 2017 By

Posted On Fri, September 22, 2017 By In Cool Listings, Historic Homes, Interiors, Upper West Side 

Built in 1897 in the Elizabethan Renaissance Revival style by renowned architect Clarence True, this brick and limestone mansion occupies a 43-foot-wide lot, not in Forest Hills or Riverdale, but at 323 West 80th Street on the Upper West Side. The New York Post writes that the owners, a Broadway producer who ran the downtown rock club the Bitter End and his wife, Donna, a casting director who happens to be the sister of Bernadette Peters, bought the house–then a rundown SRO–for $170,000 in the 1970s. Even then, they could see the potential in this grand, gothy 10,000-square-foot palace, at the time carved up into 20 rooms. A few years have passed, but we can’t help but wonder if they imagined they’d list the spruced-up house, complete with garage, elevator and enchanted garden, for almost $20 million.

The couple commandeered fellow set-designers and other theater folk to pitch in, and together the crew spent two years and $200,000 renovating the six-story landmarked building “practically from scratch,” creating nine apartments and a suitably impressive 3,000-square-foot owner’s duplex with a double-height salon.

Custom details include enormous arched doorways, herringbone floors, a fireplace with a stone mantel salvaged from a garbage pile and a grand stairway constructed by a set designer. Donna made the home’s stained glass windows after taking a class in the craft.

Extra parquet floors were turned into a dining table. Though there are four floors of apartments to be filled, the home will be delivered vacant, but certainly not devoid of old-world charm.

As mentioned, an elevator serves all six floors from the full-height basement to the enchanted roof garden. That, the rare and covetable garage, and the home’s location on a tree-lined park block in the Riverside-West End Historic District would make this listing worth a look to many a big-ticket buyer–but it’s not likely to attract the Billionaire’s Row type. And the home’s next owner will likely have plans for it as grand as the house itself.

[Listing: 323 West 80th Street by Mark Jovanovic, Jillian Scheidler and Scott Hustis for Compass]

[Via NYPost]

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Images courtesy of Compass.

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Neighborhoods : Upper West Side

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