There was a time not so long ago when a blockbuster condo conversion like The Apthorp would go out of its way to hide any sort of PriceChopping, lest it be seen as a sign of weakness in the runaway real estate market. Now, press releases are issued to herald the price cuts. It's no secret that the troubled Upper West Side limestone landmark, now (allegedly) ownership-squabble-free, needs to sell a bunch of units by September or risk going the way of the Milan. With the clock ticking, the Apthorp has slashed prices on three of its "cheapest" apartments by 20% and up. What you just heard was the sound of 1,000 monocles shattering at once.
The 1,031-square-foot #7LE, the Apthorp's lowest-priced listing, has dropped $420,000 to a new ask of $1.575 million. The other victims are also 1BR apartments checking in at 1,000+ square feet: #8DS suffered an epic 28% fall from $2.425 million to $1.75 million, and its upstairs neighbor #9DS shed $475,000, moving to a new asking price of $1.95 million. In short: The developers have gone from "considering" low-ball bids of $1,500-per-square-foot to outright offering them.
The spin is that this is all temporary, of course. Once the initial crop of 32 condos sell, Apthorp prices will once again ascend to astronomical levels, Prudential Douglas Elliman boss Howard Lorber says in the press release:
"This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to own a part of New York's history at below market prices that will never be seen again – once we reach our conversion goal in September, prices will most certainly go up. When people talk about the deal that got away, or say 'If only I had bought there then,' this is the property you will always hear lamented."Or in more typical Curbed prose, buy now or be priced out forever. We've also learned that once the $30 million in capital improvements to the property are complete and the main entrance to the Apthorp's immaculate and artificially enhanced courtyard moves to West End Avenue from Broadway, the building will employ a full-time gatekeeper to manually open and close the iron gates. Automatic gates, you see, are more of a $1,300/sf amenity.
· Curbed Inside: Choose Your Own Apthorp Adventure! [Curbed]
· All Apthorp coverage [Curbed]
· The Apthorp [Official Site]