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Stapleton’s historic George Bechtel mansion seeks a renter

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The house, built as a wedding gift in the 1880s, is as exquisite as they come

Courtesy of James Murphy

Staten Island is home to many mansions, from contemporary houses to more rustic abodes, but there is perhaps none as grand as the Victorian in the Queen Anne style at 387 Saint Paul’s Avenue in Stapleton.

Known as the George Betchel mansion, the house dates to 1888 when its namesake, the founder of the island’s old Betchel Brewery, commissioned it as a wedding gift to his daughter, Anne. A Times profile from 2009 recaps the house’s ownership history to follow:

But the couple’s time in the house was brief. Three years into the marriage, tuberculosis claimed Mr. Weiderer’s life. His young widow moved to Germany and married a second time, but just five years later, in 1899, she died also. She was 31.

Annie’s sister Agnes lived in the house until 1928, followed by the Teitelbaums (1928-48), the Fraziers (1948-88) and, from 1988 to 1999, a chef who painted the exterior what one paint consultant described, not intending to pay a compliment, as a “Lucille Ball shade” of pink.

The property was purchased in 1999 for $525,000 by its current owners, who went to work restoring the home at the cost of an additional $400,000. (Funny how exquisite, one-of-a-kind homes have a way of taking command of the purse strings.)

For reasons unknown, the house’s owners, who once recalled to the Times how their children used to play in its “creepy” turret, have put the property on the rental market for $6,000/month with James Murphy at Tom Crimmins Realty. (As a reminder, here’s what you can get elsewhere in the city for as much.)

The house has been maintained and lovingly restored, bringing to life its original millwork, mantlepieces, ornate staircases, and stained glass—it’s turret and bay windows and gables, too. The 24-room house has eight bedrooms and also comes with a rear garden and a two-car garage. The property sits among some of the tallest hills on the east coast, allowing views of New York Harbor from windows and porches around the house.

If the place looks familiar, it might not be a coincidence: Its owners lease it for film and TV. Its most notable appearance is as the home of Chalky White on the HBO series Boardwalk Empire.