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Location: New York, N.Y.
The Skinny: It is unclear why, exactly, Condé Nast publisher S.I. Newhouse felt it necessary to install a two-story bulletproof glass atrium in this enormous mansion on Manhattan's Upper East Side. That's what he did, though, when he combined two separate buildings to make the 36-foot-wide townhouse, also adding a rooftop lap pool. Newhouse put his creation on the market in 1992 asking $5.5M. No one bit for more than a year, until Russian arms dealer Dimitry Streshinsky, in town to have his wisdom teeth taken out, toured the mansion the day after his surgery. Quite possibly under the effects of medication, he offered $2M on the spot, an offer that was promptly accepted, and one which Streshinsky quickly came to regret. He later told the agent who sold him the house, and who he commissioned to resell it less than a year later, that "he'd been feeling lousy" when he made the offer. That agent revealed to the Times that upon returning to the house six months after Streshinsky and his wife moved in, "They were living in it like college students. There was a bed in the master bedroom with a TV on a box and the cable wire showing; there was one chair in the library and another TV. There was nothing in the living room and nothing in the big screening room on the top floor." The next owner was media mogul Robert F.X. Sillerman, an interesting guy in his own right, who took the house off Streshinsky's hands for $3.14M in 1994 and gut renovated it in 1996 (doing away with the rooftop pool). After almost two decades, Sillmerman has now put the house back on the market for $36M.
· East 70th Street - $36,000,000 [Brown Harris Stevens]
· POSTINGS: 157 East 70th Street; An Elegant House and a Fluctuating Market [NYT]