I`ll Take Manhattan–for $28.5 Million

The Kleirer clan: Sabrina, Michele and Samantha. Ready for their close up

NEW YORK–What can you get for US$28.5M in Manhattan?
Found out Thursday as I toured a castle in the sky with the amazing Kleier’s of Gumley Haft Kleier. These well-connected residential real estate agents are featured on Selling New York, which premieres on HGTV Canada Sept. 8.

The kitchen, opposite a 18 x 17 breakfast room

Mom Michele Kleier and daughters Samantha and Sabrina (yes, named after classic movie roles) are taking to their new found TV fame just fine, thank you. They’ve got a reported six-figure book deal in the works with HarperCollins and are more than open for some sponsorship deals on their show. The gals have to look the part, and these three arrive dressed head-to-designer-toe in Channel, dripping with jewelry, They are the original Housewives of the Upper East Side.
Michele knows this ‘hood like the back of her well manicured hand. She has to–she doesn`t use email or a computer, working it old school all inside her head. They travel in threes, arriving in matching red pumps and offering a family touch to what is often an overwhelming personal transaction.

Looking northwest up Fifth Avenue

And what a transaction. On Thursday, the Kleiers took myself and HGTV Canada publicist Ursula Terlecki on a tour of 995 Fifth Avenue, a breathtaking, 8360 square foot 16th floor penthouse overlooking Central Park and the Met.
The traditional, pre-war residence occupies the top full floor of the stately Upper East Side Candela classic. It has seven bedrooms and 8.5 baths. The .5 bath would be the showpiece of just about any other house.
Amenities include a concierge, health club and spa. There’s no parking, but what do you want for $28.5 million?
Don’t forget the maintenance fee: $35,620.47. Hey, there’s a main floor laundry room and pets are allowed.
Some of the multi-million dollar condos shown on this tour of Selling New York real estate give you the wowwee moment the minute you step off the elevator. There’s an old money restraint at 995 Fifth. When you exit the private elevator, you enter a gracious entry gallery. It’s when you step around into the 42 x 19-foot living room that you lose your breath. The space is a hotel lobby-sized showcase and beyond the nearly 10-foot walls out the deeply recessed windows is a staggering view of Manhattan. You can see some crazy birds nest art piece being installed on the roof of the Met. Further up town, the large Central Park reservoir can be seen and further still, George Washington bridge.
The residence has windows facing north, south, east and west. Look south down Fifth and there’s your view of the Empire State Building.
John-John once enjoyed the view from there. Mr. Big and Carrie, too. The place has played host to Manhattan’s rich and famous.

The 42.3 x 18.9 foot living room. Don`t spill the Grey Poupon

The his and hers dressing rooms off the master suite are the size of many Manhattan apartments. There`s a sitting room off the bedroom so the Missus can conclude her business deal without any of that unpleasantness spilling onto the sheets.
Michele said one of the 60 most wealthy men in the world checked the place out the day before. Biggest complaint so far is that the joint is too big. Exactly why I didn’t buy it.
The Kleiers say being on TV is good for business. Not all of their rich and famous clients want any face time on the show but so far they’ve been able to shoot around that.
At $28.5 million, 995 Fifth may not move right away, especially in this economy. The owner, says Michele, may be willing to rent it out for a couple of years–at 75k per month. Look for it to be featured on the finale of the first season of Selling New York, starting Sept. 8 on HGTV Canada.

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