More monied interests than we can ordinarily fathom have flirted with the idea of bagging the Duke Semans mansion (at right), but it takes an ex-cab driver, the infamous landlord to the M.T.A. at 2 Broadway, to put them all to shame by signing a contract on the place at Fifth Ave. and 82nd St. for $40 million, a record for a Manhattan townhouse. And you may even get to gawk at the interiors someday, after Tamir Sapir installs his collection of European ivory in the first five floors and waits for the penthouse tenant's lease to expire. Poor Lenny Kravitz will have to cough up the price of admission to enjoy the place he let fly away. And while the Times happens to be chatting with Sapir, they even manage to get his man-on-the-street thoughts about the state of the market: "Look, there is now lots of money there. If you're not going to put money in real estate, where else?" Where else, indeed.
· Listing: 1009 Fifth Avenue [Corcoran]
· $40 Million Buys Ex-Cabby His Own Corner of 5th Avenue [NYT]
· Yo Duke, Are You Gonna Go His Way? [Curbed]