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Novogratz!

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The home collecting career of designer Robert Novogratz began with a $79,000, 5,000-square-foot house in Charlotte, North Carolina. But the Novogratz clan as we know it got its start in NYC with an illegal sublet of a rent-controlled, prewar, West End Avenue pad, which Robert and Cortney snapped up for $1,500/month in 1992. In 1994, the couple purchased 343 West 19th Street, a condemned property where the seller financed 80 percent of the Novogratz family's purchase so they could renovate. The rest is history. [NYP; previously]