The story of the historic townhouse at 46 First Place in Carroll Gardens is just as much a story of its owner, Kathryn Sennis, who has lived in and worked from the elegant 1899 brownstone for nearly 32 years. In 2012, Sennis, a psychotherapist, opened Who’s On First? Children’s Enrichment Studio with her daughter here, offering art classes, parties, baby yoga and programs for parents and children, including foreign language classes and parenting groups.
Ms. Sennis’s story was highlighted in the Observer last May, where she told of buying the townhouse in 1981 for $250,000 from an “elderly Italian woman,” how her presence confused the neighbors at the time (“you ain’t even Italian!”) and how much the neighborhood has changed since then. She also talks of the extensive, exhaustive renovations she painstakingly undertook. She rents out the upper two floors, and her daughter uses the garden level of the four-family home. It’s a Brooklyn story like so many others–though in this case it’s one with a $6 million price tag attached.
The house has been on and off the market since at least 2014, to no avail it seems. It was first listed for $7.35 million, delisted, then listed again in 2015 for $6.95 million. The latest “brand-new” listing comes with an ask of $5.999 million. One could see why selling wouldn’t be urgent, possibly due to the substantial rental income (apartment #3 is currently listed for $4,000 a month). On the other hand, it’s probably a lot of upkeep, and if someone wants to fork over 7 or 6 or–what the hey–5 million for a house you’ve paid two hundred and fifty thousand dollars for (in 1981, but still), well, sure, why not?
This four-family townhouse is currently divided into a lower owner’s duplex and two upper rental apartments. It boasts four fireplaces and a large two-story extension, adding about 6,000 square feet of living space. Like many on these blocks, the house is set back on its lot, allowing for more sunlight and one of those gorgeous front gardens that gives the neighborhood its name.
Upon entering the impressive lower duplex you’ll find that the parlor floor is, as the listing says, “a true masterpiece” with floor-to-ceiling windows, a triple parlor and an eat-in-kitchen with garden views opening onto a deck through big glass doors. The home’s historic details are many, including original Corinthian pillars and decorative ceiling plaster throughout.
We’re guessing this elegant bedroom is in the back parlor. There’s a full bath on this floor as well.
The top two floors are set up as two-bedroom apartments; the one pictured here is currently renting for $4,000 a month.
The apartments look as nice as the rest of the home. And, of course, you’re free to turn the house into a four-story single-family dream home if you don’t need the rental income and you’re craving more space.
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Images courtesy of Corcoran Group and Douglas Elliman
Neighborhoods : Carroll Gardens