Amazing Gracie: If Gracie Mansion Were on the Market

Written by Aaron Short on . Posted in Upfront.

If the mayor’s mansion were up for sale, could it command the highest price for a single-family home in New York City history?

What if you could own the Upper East Side’s most iconic single-family residence?

The 214-year-old mansion has played host to presidents, dignitaries and movie stars, and has been the official residence of New York City’s mayors since 1942, when Fiorello La Guardia moved in. Although Mayor Michael Bloomberg has avoided staying there overnight, preferring his own townhouse in the neighborhood, Gracie will almost certainly become home to the next mayor, whoever he may be.

But what would the People’s House actually go for on the open market?

The Federalist-style mansion is a 7,500-square-foot property with five bedrooms, a grand ballroom and two reception rooms. It sits on 11 acres of property adjacent to the East River with views of Queens.

According to property records, the land itself is valued at $109 million. Additionally, Bloomberg invested $7 million of his personal fortune into the building’s most recent renovation.

Real estate agents estimate the house could fetch upwards of $150 million, although the property’s historic and unusual nature may determine the market.

“It’s a one-of-a-kind, unique property, and that’s what everyone in the world looks for,” Town Residential broker Robin Lyon-Gardiner said. “Someone is buying that not with any of that in mind. It’s like buying a Hamptons house in Manhattan. And you can’t even do that because that house comes with a pool, a tennis court and a view of the ocean. Can you build a tennis court there?”

Mansions in Manhattan with 11 acres of riverside property don’t come along every day. A townhouse on 52nd Street purported to be the largest single family home in New York City just hit the market for $130 million. It has eight bedrooms, 10 bathrooms, a swimming pool and tennis court—but Ed Koch never walked around naked inside.

Of course, it’s highly unlikely the city would ever put Gracie Mansion up for sale—unless, perhaps, there were a particularly dreadful budget crisis. Fortunately, at that point Bloomberg could just buy the place back for the city.

“He’s the only one who could afford it,” Lyon-Gardiner said.

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