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Irving Berlin’s onetime Yorkville home gets $1M discount

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The Berlins lived in the 130 East End Avenue duplex from 1931 to 1944

Courtesy of Warburg

Originally published 5/17/17

UPDATE 7/12/17: The onetime home of Irving Berlin has taken a $1 million price cut, after first coming on the market in May this year. The penthouse was asking $7.9 million in May, but with no buyers coming forward, the price has now dropped down to $6.9 million as of July 10, according to StreetEasy. Real Estate Weekly first reported on the price cut.


A Yorkville duplex that slipped onto the market earlier this week comes with a unique backstory: It was the onetime home of great American songwriter Irving Berlin. The “God Bless America” and “There’s No Business Like Show Business” songster moved into the duplex at 130 East End Avenue in 1931 at the age of 43 along with his family. At the time, Berlin already had hits like “Puttin’ on the Ritz” and “Blue Skies” under his belt, but would go on to write “I’ve Got My Love to Keep Me Warm” and “Say It Isn’t So” during the time he lived in the apartment.

In As Thousands Cheer: The Life of Irving Berlin, author Laurence Bergreen recalls the East End Avenue duplex:

Reflecting Ellin’s taste rather than [Irving’s], it was a formal, stately dwelling with impressive views of the East River. There was nothing showbizzy about the place; the antiques and floor-to-ceiling bookshelves quietly suggested the home of a wealthy, cultivated businessman possessed of exacting, if severe taste.

The Berlins lived in the apartment for the next 13 years, long enough for the space to be photographed by prolific American architectural photographer Samuel Gottscho. The photographs, on file with the Museum of the City of New York, show an apartment that today largely remains unchanged barring cosmetic upgrades like paint.

MCNY

Today, the apartment shows just as stately with its sweeping entry staircase, black and white marble foyer floor, and 28-foot living room with a wood-burning fireplace and views onto the East River.

The two-bedroom, four-bathroom penthouse is on the market for $7.9 million, with monthly maintenance charges of $7,585. (Surely more pricey than in Berlin’s day.) The listing is held by Jane R. Andrews at Warburg.