For $7.5M, George S. Kaufman’s one-time ‘European’ townhouse on the Upper East Side

Posted On Fri, February 21, 2020 By

Posted On Fri, February 21, 2020 By In Cool Listings, Upper East Side

Photos by Guillaume Gaudet, courtesy The Corcoran Group

Celebrated playwright George S. Kaufman lived at 158 East 63rd Street in the 1920s, when he was part of the Algonquin Round Table circle of New York artists. As such, a young Moss Hart visited him at his Upper East Side home and later described seeing the home for the first time as an “illuminating and expensive moment” in his autobiography “Act One.” The townhouse is now on the market again for $7.5 million, and its show-stopping features–a deep garden, European-style architecture, and a handsome library–are all still intact.

158 East 63rd Street, Upper East Side townhouse

The four-bedroom home was built in 1872 and is spread over five floors and 3,712 square feet. Enter the home at the garden level through a foyer, off which is the eat-in kitchen, complete with a breakfast banquet. In the rear is a formal dining room that opens to a 42-foot deep landscaped, south-facing garden, which is filled with ivy and boxwood.

158 East 63rd Street, Upper East Side townhouse

158 East 63rd Street, Upper East Side townhouse

On the parlor level are the living room and a library, which the listing describes and having “the feeling of a townhouse in London with voluminous 11’5” ceilings and a sweep of views from front to back.” Both rooms have wood-burning fireplaces.

158 East 63rd Street, Upper East Side townhouse

158 East 63rd Street, Upper East Side townhouse

The master suite takes up the entire third floor and includes a large, street-facing dressing room full of custom built-in closets and bookshelves. There are two more bedrooms on the fourth floor and one on the fifth.

158 East 63rd Street, Upper East Side townhouse

“I walked up the stairs and stopped briefly at the second landing to look at a drawing room and library divided by the stairwell. Both rooms might have come straight out of the movies as far as my innocent eyes were concerned. I knew at once that my first goal the moment the money began to roll in, beyond the taking of taxicabs wherever and whenever I wanted to, would be to live like this,” wrote Moss Hart of the house in “Act One.”

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[Listing: 158 East 63rd Street by Chris Kann with partners Robby Browne and Jennifer Ireland Kubis of The Corcoran Group]

Photos by Guillaume Gaudet, courtesy The Corcoran Group

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Neighborhoods : Upper East Side

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