The Real Deal New York

Qatar to spend record $100M on UES commercial townhouse

Corcoran's Chiang represented seller; Alexander team represented buyer

January 30, 2014 03:45PM
By Julie Strickland and Hiten Samtani

From left: Carrie Chiang, 19 E. 64th St., Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, Oren Alexander and Tal Alexander

From left: Carrie Chiang, 19 E. 64th St., Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, Oren Alexander and Tal Alexander

UPDATED, 4:42 p.m., Jan. 30: The nation of Qatar is in contract to buy an Upper East Side townhouse for $100 million.

Qatar intends to convert the townhouse into a consulate, as the New York Post initially reported. The 20,500-square-foot mansion, currently in use as an art gallery, will set a record for the priciest New York City commercial townhouse if it closes.

The property is currently owned by prominent New York City art dealers the Wildenstein family, who were represented by the Corcoran Group’s Carrie Chiang in the deal. The property was never officially put on the market, but had unofficially been asking about $125 million, Chiang confirmed. The sale is slated to close in April.

“I was approached by the buyer’s representatives who asked if I knew of a property that could meet the very specific needs of their client,” Chiang told The Real Deal via email. “I contacted my long-term clients, the Wildenstein family, to explore any possible interest in selling their mansion although the property was not on the market. I thought of that property because it was the perfect answer to the Qatari consulate requirements. After reviewing the buyer’s request, my client agreed to the sale and the deal was consummated very quickly.”

The record for the most-expensive residential townhouse sale remains with the Harkness Mansion at 4 East 75th Street, which private equity mogul J. Christopher Flowers purchased in 2006 for $53 million. Flowers later sold the property to art mogul Larry Gagosian for $36.5  million.

In a statement to The Real Deal, Corcoran President and CEO Pamela Liebman credited Chiang’s “expertise and experience” for her role in the successful deal. “Even though Carrie maintains a very low profile, everyone in the industry - and around the world – knows who to call when a client is looking for the best,” Liebman said via email.

Oren and Tal Alexander of Douglas Elliman’s Alexander team represented the buyer in the deal.

“Besides the location and width, it’s a turn-key property, which is what I think struck the state of Qatar,” Oren Alexander told The Real Deal. “They wanted something that was going to happen rather quickly, and everything else in terms of location or with the right width was a project, and they didn’t want a two- or three-year project. Foreigners especially don’t want to come to the States and go through the headache of hiring contractors and building something.”

Ahmed Yousef Al-Rumaihi, consul general for the state of Qatar, said in a statement provided to The Real Deal by the Alexander team that “this is a perfect choice for our consulate, given its location, size, layout and infrastructure. Other than very minor cosmetic changes we may make, it is in move-in condition.”

Qatari royals have been on somewhat of a buying binge in Manhattan over the last couple of years. In June 2013, Sheikh Hamad bin Jassim bin Jaber al-Thani, the country’s former prime minister, paid $35 million for the Ellen Biddle Shipman townhouse at Beekman Place. And a year before that, he negotiated deals to buy about $250 million worth of apartments in Extell’s One57 tower.

The eleven-member Alexander Team also holds the listing for a $95 million, full-floor unit at the Sherry Netherland, which changed brokers earlier this month, a $58 million listing in the Hamptons and two Long Island Gold Coast estates that are listed for $15 million and $8 million respectively.

19 Responses to “Qatar to spend record $100M on UES commercial townhouse”

  1. January 30, 2014 at 10:12 am, Gregory Garson said:

    That’s Amazing!!

  2. January 30, 2014 at 10:14 am, Gregory Garson said:

    That sale not only should shatter the record, but DOES shatter the record!!

    • January 30, 2014 at 10:26 am, GueldaTRD said:

      It’s only in contract. The price could change.

    • January 30, 2014 at 10:26 am, HitenSamtani said:

      Hey Greg, it depends on whether it closes at that price. It may not, and another property may sell for even more before this one closes – though that would be some serious news!

      • January 30, 2014 at 10:45 am, Gregory Garson said:

        I have a feeling that it will close as that price as the attorney for the deal gave me some insight.

        • January 30, 2014 at 2:01 pm, Sol Goldman said:

          Then that attorney should be fired for violating attorney-client privacy rights

      • January 30, 2014 at 3:45 pm, Chris Harrison said:

        Hiten, I think you are missing the point here. It’s a commercial property – always has been and will remain a commercial use. A government consulate is a commercial entity. Even when it closes, it doesn’t even come close to shattering a record. This is a classic example of the press sensationalizing a not so sensational story!

        • January 30, 2014 at 4:13 pm, HitenSamtani said:

          When you’re right Chris, you’re right. We’re updating the story. Thanks for the note, Hiten

          • January 30, 2014 at 11:20 pm, yep said:

            how about you guys just don’t make so many mistakes and take some time when writing articles…..

  3. January 30, 2014 at 11:41 am, NYC Parker said:

    Great, more street parking lost to these stupid consulates.

  4. January 30, 2014 at 12:18 pm, James said:

    I wonder how all of his poor subjects feel about this?
    More reasons why extremist groups flourish in the Middle East.
    Greed

  5. January 30, 2014 at 3:27 pm, LLJ said:

    False reporting at it’s finest. The property is a commercial townhouse yet is being reported as a residential purchase. This shatters NO records. It’s always being a commercial property and always will it will be used as a government consulate. What a joke.

  6. January 30, 2014 at 4:01 pm, nyman said:

    “I contacted my long-term clients, the Wildenstein family,” and they gave it to the Alexander

  7. January 30, 2014 at 4:45 pm, Peter Goss said:

    opinionamerica.net is proud that in America everyone can succeed.

  8. January 30, 2014 at 10:29 pm, saywha? said:

    it’s amazing how such a tiny country will spend $100MM on a building for a few dicks to sit around and play cards.

  9. January 31, 2014 at 7:15 am, talisacooldude said:

    the only thing cool about this article is that Tal appears to have brokered a hundred million dollar deal in a hanes V-neck

  10. January 31, 2014 at 1:23 pm, Jason Heinz said:

    Only Tal and Oren would spend this much effort getting their names out there for a deal that hasn’t closed. And, sounds like Carrie structured this entire deal and Tal and Oren had little to do with it…the property sells itself. #ATeam#RecordBreakers #AllDay

  11. January 31, 2014 at 11:30 pm, cromagnan said:

    They will need ART http://www.clarabertafineart.com

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