Photo credit: Cary Horowitz for Brown Harris Stevens.
Between Russian-born billionaire Roman Abramovitch‘s three-townhouse Upper East Side combo, Sarah Jessica Parker‘s Village two-fer plans, and the many similar but less newsworthy grandiose schemes by modern-day moguls to collect and build dream castles, the mega-mansion may seem like a sign of 21st-century excess. But the practice has a long history, as evidenced by this 54.5-foot-wide Greenwich Village property at 11 West 10th Street that just hit the market for a trophy-level $50 million, which could set a townhouse record below 34th Street, according to the New York Times. Built by renowned architect Ernest Flagg in the early 1800s, the duo was combined in the early 1900s by investor Jeremiah Milbank, creating a 16,560-square-foot, L-shaped property surrounded by 5,690 square feet of private terrace. Today, it’s been renovated from stem to stern and is ready to welcome a new decade’s decadence.
Megamansion tour, this way
A FiDi landmark with a storied past is back on the market with a significant price drop. The American Bank Note building was built in 1908 by architects Kirby, Petit & Green to serve as the company’s headquarters, then later bought by a foundation of the late Maharishi Mahesh Yogi and used as a meditation retreat. The landmarked building at 70 Broad Street was last sold to a Chinese construction firm in 2010 for $18 million. The new owners renovated the opulent Neo-Classical structure in 2015 and put it on the market for a whopping $88 million in 2016. On Friday, the listing hit the market again, this time with a slightly more moderate $43 million price tag.
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, Mon, September 17, 2018
6sqft recently reported that construction had begun on Russia-born billionaire Roman Abramovich‘s Upper East Side megamansion combo of three existing townhouses on East 75th Street. Plans for the megamansion with a pool, art room, backyard and a glass and bronze curtain wall connecting the three townhouses in the rear, designed by Stephen Wang + Associates, were approved by the Landmarks Preservation Commission in November of 2017. The LPC approval came a few months after Abramovich announced a split from arts patron and businesswoman Dasha Zhukova, whom he married in 2008 and with whom he has a son and a daughter. Now, the New York Post reports, Abramovich has transferred ownership of the properties at 9, 11 and 13, along with at least one other Upper East Side address to his ex.
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Russia-born billionaire Roman Abramovich is moving ahead with his plan to construct a mega-mansion on the Upper East Side, the New York Post reported on Monday. Abramovich’s original proposal in 2016 called for an “18,255-square-foot mansion with a six-foot front yard, 30-foot backyard and pool in the cellar” across a combination of three townhouses on East 75th Street. Although the Landmarks Preservation Commission rejected that first plan, a proposal that kept similarly-styled facades and added a fourth property was approved soon after.
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Image: Landmarks Preservation Commission
Shortly after Roman Abramovich added a fourth Upper East Side townhouse to his now-$96-million assemblage on East 75th Street, the Russian billionaire’s three-house, 18,000-square-foot mega-mansion plans changed ever so slightly, with renovation efforts to be concentrated on numbers 9, 11 and 13, leaving number 15 out of the running for the mega-combo. As 6sqft previously reported, the steel magnate and owner of the Chelsea Football Club has been working with architect Steven Wang with big-name firm Herzog & de Meuron as a design consultant. The first proposal for the project, “an 18,255-square-foot mansion with a six-foot front yard, 30-foot backyard, and pool in the cellar” was rejected by the Landmarks Preservation Commission and the DOB in April 2016, but a revised plan was approved two months later. Tweaked again to include the new property, the revised plan has been officially approved on Tuesday by the Landmarks Preservation Commission.
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Rendering of the revised LPC proposal from June 2016; via Steven Wang Architects
In the wake of Mayor de Blasio’s claims that Russian oligarchs “basically stole the wealth of their country with the help of their government” and then used these “ill-gotten gains” to buy up property here in the city, one of the country’s best-known billionaires, steel magnate and owner of the Chelsea Football Club Roman Abramovich, has purchased a fourth townhouse on a landmarked Upper East Side block in order to create an unprecedented mega-mansion. According to the Post, Abramovich’s latest buy was a secret one but brought his total assemblage up to a whopping $96 million. Though he could’ve created the “biggest home the city has ever seen,” reps for architect Stephen Wang tell us that the project will still remain a three-townhouse combination, now with a different trio included.
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6sqft has reported on the townhouse combo mega-mansion phenomenon before, such as when Roman Abramovich clashed with the DOB over a set of Upper East Side townhouses and when Sarah Jessica Parker and the unrelated but also loaded Sean Parker dropped a bundle on their respective two-and three-fers; now another stunning double scoop of insane townhouse living just hit the market at 166 East 81st Street and 179 East 80th Street (just down the street from Madonna’s triple Georgian townhouse compound). The two contiguous houses comprise 8,000 square feet of gorgeous 1899 historic details and uptown opulence for the appropriately uptown ask of $28 million. Unlike those other Siamese townhouse siblings, though, these bad boys are adjoined back-to-back through a private 74-foot two-tiered landscaped garden with a swimming pool. Take that, Madonna.
Take the front to back tour, this way
Despite the claim by some preservationists that the building looked like “a block of swiss cheese,” back in June the Landmarks Preservation Commission approved Maya Lin Studio‘s design of a contemporary mega-mansion in the heart of Tribeca‘s historic district. The plans call for a five-story, 20,000-square-foot home at 11 Hubert Street–including incredible amenities such as an 82-foot swimming pool, basketball/squash court, four-car garage, and an open-air courtyard–and, as the Post reports, the corner site has just hit the market for $35 million, though this doesn’t include the $15 million it’ll cost to actually build the house.
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There must be something about the Village and Facebook that go together. Back in January, the social media company’s co-founder Chris Hughes sold his Soho loft for $8.5 million and relocated to a $23.5 million West Village townhouse. And now the Post reports that the other founding partner, Sean Parker, who also created Napster, has acquired three homes along West 10th Street, where he plans to create one big mega-mansion.
Everyone knows Manhattan is all about high-rise condos, tall apartment buildings, and any other kind of building in which people live above other people. But it wasn’t always that way. A hundred years ago, there was still room on this small island for the ultra-rich to build mansions all to themselves, single-family homes with the square footage of a castle. Today many of these buildings, all “Millionaire’s Row” mansions in the Upper East Side, belong to museums and schools, but the question remains: What are the biggest buildings in Manhattan today that were built as single-family homes?
See our list of mansions here