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Million Dollar Listing New York S4E09: Money Can't Buy Love

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It's Season 4 of Million Dollar Listing New York, where three brokers, Fredrik Eklund, Luis Ortiz, and Ryan Serhant, show the world what it takes to sell high-priced New York City apartments. Check in each week for recaps by Angela Bunt. Episode air date: 6/10/2015.

Finally! A woman is in Luis's apartment. Unfortunately, that woman is his mother Miriam, who has come to spend time with her son in New York. Luis had originally planned her trip thinking that "the easiest deal of his life" was about to go through at 300 East 90th Street. But with the disappearance of Richard Hamilton, a buyer's star broker, he's busier than ever trying to make a sale on the apartment with the golden shower (↓) before South African millionaire seller Garin pulls out. Luis hurriedly tries to get ready and out the door while his mother is trying to shove pancakes down his throat: "Luis, you don't have any family pictures up. You have one spoon, one plate. Is this the kind of life you want to live?" Umm, I think the first thing we want to address here is the lack of leafy greens first thing in the morning. Time to throw the Bisquick away, Mama Ortiz.

[Luis's listing at 300 East 90th Street.]

With only 18 days left on his fancy-pants townhouse listing at 79 Horatio Street, Fredrik is starting to sweat over his lack of a buyer. And lack of showings in general. Despite the super high-end luxury finishes, the $22.5 million-dollar mark ($3,214 per square foot) is still crazy high—a record, in fact. "People just don't pay this price per-square-foot for townhomes in the city," says employee Don during a team meeting. Although Fredrik knew the price was a stretch when he first agreed to it, he still tells his team that "we need to sell this." Also, pack up your things, Don. You're fired.

[Fredrik's $$$ townhouse at 79 Horatio Street.]

Oh where oh where is our little domesticated Ryan Serhant off to now? The lovely area below Central Park known as Billionaires Row (because it's filled with high-end real estate that only billionaires can afford) to view the apartment of a "technology tycoon" at One57. Upon his arrival, Ryan is greeted by the client's broker, Victor, via an iPad mounted on a futuristic looking Segway that's streaming FaceTime. I'll repeat: he is using FaceTime, on an iPad, and the iPad is mounted to a Segway that he controls remotely, and is now following Ryan around the apartment for the tour. (If this is the future of robots, then I guess I'm not so scared of robots after all.)

[The living room, with unplayed piano.]

The property is your stereotypical "I'm super rich but never home" bachelor pad, with velvet walls, zebra wood, and a piano sitting in the middle of the living room that won't ever get played. At 2,145 square feet, it houses two bedrooms, a walk-in closet, and 2.5 bathrooms. Seems like an easy enough sale, except for one problem: the obstructed view. In a Central Park-facing apartment, the money shot is, well, Central Park. But this apartment isn't high up enough in the building, so it's staring at the ass-end of the Essex House instead. They discuss pricing, and said tycoon (Zuckerberg? Is it Zuckerberg?) wants $16 million. Who on God's green earth would ever pay $16 million for a two-bedroom apartment!?!? After some awkward back and forth, man versus machine style, they settle on $13.95M. Ryan has his work cut out for him.

Luis may be our favorite Latin firecracker, but the poor guy is literally about to blow up. He and Ronnie are still a team of two, and because of his control-freak ways he's handling way more responsibility than he has time for. Phone calls, showings, working to get new marketing materials up for Garin's UES penthouse. The poor guy doesn't even have time to think, let alone eat pancakes. He admits that the stress is starting to affect him physically, and not just because Ronnie is going to bitch-slap him if he keeps snapping at her. "You need to take five and just relax," she says. "I don't need you to tell me to relax!" Good one, Luis.

[Penthouse One at 22 Renwick, which Olivia has to sell fast to win a bet with Ryan.]

Olivia is still on her grind trying to sell Penthouse One at the Renwick Modern, a.k.a. 22 Renwick Street, lest she end up taking a dip in the Hudson River. No, that's not a thinly veiled death threat—just her holding up her end of the bet she made with Ryan last week. If she sells Penthouse One first, Ryan has to walk around the office in a bunny costume. If he sells Penthouse Three first, she has to swim in the Hudson River. So when Ryan shows up at her listing appointment wielding a ruffle-y one-piece bathing suit and swimming cap straight out of the '50s, she fears the worst. She knows that Ryan sold his penthouse, but what she doesn't know is that he is also the one who bought it... yet.

Fredrik meets with developers Tom and Jerry—err, Jared—to discuss progress on the West Village townhouse. Or, lack thereof. Fredrik has had no offers on the overpriced listing, despite all the fancy bells and whistles that have been added to the home. (Can you say marble-wrapped fireplaces?) In seven days his contract with the two developers expires, and according to Jared, so does their patience. Apparently the two have no plans on re-signing Freddy as their broker once the time runs out. A fuming Freddy grits his teeth and vows to sell the property.

[Ryan's One57 listing.]

Ryan is peddling his Billionaire Row listing at One57 to his circle of elite brokers, who will then show it to their elite clients. The apartment, though lovely, does not have the breathtaking Central Park views to match its breathtaking price, and no amount of schmoozing can cover that up. The one saving grace of his pitch is that, "mainly out of convenience," the owner is including all the furnishings without extra cost. Damn, that's how rich I want to be. Rich enough to be able to get rid of all my furniture because I don't feel like packing it up.

Since Fredrik's ill-fated meeting with Jared and Tom, he actually had a potential buyer view the townhouse. Brian, a successful businessman without a broker, who had to see the place before he jet-setted off to Europe. He calls Freddy at his office and the two cut to the chase pretty quickly. He tells Fredrik he wants the place, but not at its current price. "I didn't get rich overspending for houses," he says. Fredrik, clearly impressed by Brian's gumption, responds, "I like you, I like your style, I like the way you think." Then he gives him this weird speech about meeting him and feeling perfection, and that the townhouse is perfection. "Perfection, perfection, perfection!" Brian agrees—of course, since he is perfection—but he's not paying $22.5M. Let the offer tug-of-war commence!

After a week-and-a-half without contact, absentee broker Richard Hamilton has finally broken his silence and is meeting with Luis for dinner. Of course, Luis will have to ditch plans with his mother on her last night in town, but anything for a sale, right? Hamilton staggers into the restaurant, oxygen mask in tow, and reveals to Luis that he was in the hospital and potentially needs transplants for his liver, heart, and lungs. (So why the hell are you still drinking a vodka cranberry with dinner?! YOLO.) The good news? He has the signed contract with him and the deal at 300 East 90th is still going through. Dumbfounded, Luis says "forget about the deal... who cares?" Richard urges him to go home and hug the ones he loves. Ironically, if Luis had taken that advice, this conversation would never have happened.

[Penthouse 3 at 22 Renwick, which Ryan bought himself.]

Olivia marches into Ryan's office with a letter from 22 Renwick Street addressed to Puffer Munkin. She asks him why they're getting mail from 22 Renwick, and also what the hell is a puffer munkin. Busteddd. Olivia knows Ryan is the buyer, and she tells him that not only is he disqualified from the bet, but now he must walk around in the bunny suit and do what she says all day. Look, I want to see Ryan in a bunny suit as much as the next guy, but that's totally unfair! There was no clause in the contract that said you couldn't sell the penthouse to yourself. In the biz, that's what we call a loophole.

Fredrik meets with Tom and Jared yet again to share his good news on the townhouse. He has an offer: all-cash, immediate closing, $19.5 million. Of course they tell him it's not high enough, and they counter with $22 million. Jared and Tom are as smug as ever when Fredrik returns with the best and final offer of $21 million, just $1.5 million under ask. It's a deal, and a record for the West Village. Yayyy! More money! Maybe you can donate it to Richard Hamilton's GoFundMe surgery page.

Luis is either in the middle of a breakdown or on the verge of a breakthough. After suffering a panic attack and being rushed to the hospital, allegedly "very close to having a heart attack," he decides it's time to get his shit together. Based on a coworker's recommendation, life coach Aaron Keith heads over to his apartment to help him pull his head out of his Ortiz. Step one: Stop drinking so many Red Bulls. (OK, that's my own advice.) Step 2: Meditate every morning. Aaron walks him through some deep-breathing exercises, and Luis becomes instantly calmer. Wow, I guess mediating is easy! Nirvana, here I come!

A bet is a bet, and even though Ryan technically won said bet and Olivia still hasn't sold a dayum thing, Ryan mans up and dons the bunny suit at the office. He, uhhh, actually looks kind of adorable, like a working-class Furry or something. Olivia sends him out to pick her up a salad and coffee. Luckily, New York is probably the only city where seeing a grown man walk the street in a bunny suit is totally acceptable.

Until next time...
· Million Dollar Listing New York [Bravo]
· All Million Dollar Listing coverage [Curbed]


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