After Olivier Sarkozy purchased a mixed townhouse at 226-228 East 49th Street within the Turtle Bay neighborhood of Manhattan in April 2014, and shortly earlier than he married Mary-Kate Olsen in November 2015, the couple kicked off what was presupposed to be an bold, top-to-bottom renovation.
But issues didn’t go in response to plan. The renovation stalled, the couple divorced earlier this 12 months, and now Mr. Sarkozy, a banker who’s the half brother of the previous French president Nicolas Sarkozy, is promoting.
“They never lived there,” stated Michael Bolla, an agent at Sotheby’s International Realty who’s itemizing the property. He stated that Ms. Olsen, the previous actress and designer who based The Row together with her twin sister, Ashley, just isn’t an proprietor.
Olivier Sarkozy and Mary-Kate Olsen in East Hampton, N.Y., in 2015.Credit…Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for The Apollo
“It’s his house,” Mr. Bolla stated. “He was the purchaser, and he is the seller.”
Yet at first, the couple tapped Ms. Olsen’s design contacts for the renovation. According to metropolis data, the architect on the job was Montalba Architects, the identical agency that designed The Row’s first flagship retailer, in Los Angeles.
Mr. Sarkozy purchased the townhouse, which incorporates some eight,700 sq. toes over 5 flooring, from the artist David Deutsch for $13.5 million, by way of a restricted legal responsibility firm. He is now asking $11.5 million, Mr. Bolla stated, a reduction that displays the unfinished state of the inside. (Annual property taxes are $101,870.)
“It’s being sold as is,” he stated.
Much has been torn out, though a few of the dwelling’s distinctive components stay, together with a front room with two fireplaces beneath an elaborately embellished 22-foot-high coffered ceiling. A rooftop pool and elevator have been eliminated, Mr. Bolla stated.
The townhouse at 226-228 East 49th Street, within the Turtle Bay neighborhood of Manhattan, was as soon as dwelling to the creator of Turtle Bay Gardens.Credit…Katherine Marks for The New York Times
The townhouse, which has a storied previous, backs onto Turtle Bay Gardens, a personal, shared oasis enclosed by townhouses on East 48th and East 49th Streets, between Second and Third Avenues, which collectively kind the Turtle Bay Gardens Historic District.
Mr. Sarkozy’s townhouse was as soon as dwelling to Charlotte Hunnewell Sorchan (who modified her final identify to Martin after remarrying in 1921), who created the gardens after shopping for a cluster of 21 townhouses in 1919 with the imaginative and prescient of cultivating a lavish, shared yard.
“She had this idea, while talking with some of her rich friends at the Ritz-Carlton Hotel over tea, of getting a group together that would rehabilitate and renovate the rowhouses together and create a community,” stated Andrew S. Dolkart, a professor of historic preservation on the Columbia University Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation. “That didn’t actually pan out, so she decided to do it herself.”
A digitally enhanced photograph of the library, exhibiting what it might appear like with a brand new ground and hearth mantel.Credit…Yale Wagne/Sotheby’s International Realty
After shopping for the townhouses, she employed the architects Edward C. Dean and William Lawrence Bottomley to renovate all of them. Each was totally different, however alongside East 48th Street, the architects designed new facades within the Georgian model; alongside East 49th Street, facades had a extra Flemish model.
Behind the homes, the final six toes of every yard was used to ascertain a shared 12-foot-wide stroll for the gardens, which have fountains and luxurious plantings. Low partitions have been constructed to delineate non-public gardens with out blocking sightlines.
Mrs. Martin stored 226-228 East 49th Street as her own residence and bought off many of the different homes after building was accomplished in 1921. “She sold the homes at cost,” stated Pamela Hanlon, the creator of “Manhattan’s Turtle Bay: Story of a Midtown Neighborhood,” besides for 4 models that she initially rented.
“They immediately attracted very artistic people,” Ms. Hanlon stated. “Writers, theatrical personalities, as well as some top lawyers.”
Over the years, residents have included the creator E.B. White, the actress Katharine Hepburn, the composer Stephen Sondheim, the journalist Dorothy Thompson, the playwright and director Garson Kanin and the ebook editor Maxwell Perkins, who labored with F. Scott Fitzgerald and Ernest Hemingway.
A willow tree that lengthy grew in Turtle Bay Gardens was immortalized by Mr. White on the conclusion of his 1949 ebook, “Here Is New York,” by which he wrote about “a battered tree, long suffering and much climbed, held together by strands of wire,” as a logo of town’s resilience.
A digitally enhanced photograph of the lounge, exhibiting what it might appear like with a brand new ground. Much of the inside was torn out, however the room’s elaborately embellished coffered ceiling stays.Credit…Yale Wagne/Sotheby’s International Realty
That tree was reduce down in 2009, however the restrictions that Mrs. Martin initially placed on the properties to create the gardens largely stay, after being renewed by the house owners of the townhouses every time they expired.
Those restrictions preserve the 12-foot-wide walkway, stop the constructing of excessive partitions and fences, prohibit kitchens from going through the gardens, require vents to be routed by way of the roof or entrance of every constructing and prohibit drying garments or storing trash cans behind the houses.
The house owners share the prices of sustaining the widespread stroll and gardens. The price for 226-228 East 49th Street is $three,200 a 12 months, Mr. Bolla stated, paid quarterly.
Although the townhouse just isn’t move-in prepared, it might be reworked into a surprising single- or two-family dwelling, Mr. Bolla insisted: “It’s looking for its next matriarch.”
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