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Battery Park City's Riverhouse Cleans House, Sells Apartments

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The breeze off the river stirred up some trouble earlier this year at Riverhouse, the green-minded luxury condo that pulled in Leonardo DiCaprio and Tyra Banks. First there was a sponsor power struggle and money dispute that led to developer Sheldrake's ousting. Then the PriceChopper swam over to take 6 to 20 percent off some unit prices. But there's a new team in town, and they believe Riverhouse's troubles are all in the past. The folks from Centurion Real Estate Partners, part of the new ownership group that took over Riverhouse in March, invited us to check out the building and find out what's happening with sales these days. So, what's the deal?

The money troubles that led to a lis pendens pre-foreclosure filing in February have been cleared up. The building has a fresh loan, which gives the new team "years" to sell out the building. And they don't think they'll need all that time: the building is over 75 percent sold.

Seven deals have closed since the ownership switch in March, with 15 more in contract, allegedly all "at or within a few percent" of asking prices post-choppage. Lots of Goldman employees are reportedly among the buyers, thanks to that short commute, and several buyers that opted to back out during the developer tussle have apparently come back to buy again. How well does the sales team think things are going? Well enough that they're sending away prospective bidders with lowball offers.

We'll be keeping an eye on the closings to see how that strategy pans out, but it's all starting to sound a little like the headier days of the boom, when bidding wars were shrug-worthy and buildings sold themselves as lifestyles rather than just condos. Another flashback to 2006: the last bit of Teardrop Park will open in the building's shadow next week.
· Riverhouse coverage [Curbed]


1 River Terrace, New York, NY