Though his Royal Highness Prince George of Cambridge will always see Kensington Palace as home, one would imagine that the third in line to the throne would be amenable to a New York City pied-à-terre. Now that “Georgie” – née George Alexander Louis– is a week old, and the formalities of naming and ascension have been dealt with — The Real Deal turned to some top luxury brokers in the city to see where he might choose to park his pram. They made their picks based on a combination of historical significance, access to white-glove amenities, and proximity to scrumptious eats.
If the name wasn’t enough, there’s also the fact that this full-block building – located at 435 West 23rd Street — was once the largest and most imposing residential property in the city. Developed by Henry Mandel — known as the Donald Trump of the 1920s – London Terrace continues to employ doormen “dressed as bobbies, just like in England,” according to Douglas Elliman broker Sonia Stock. The royal family will be reassured that security is right and proper, and feel at home, she added.
The storied Upper East Side building where Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis spent her childhood offers the perfect combination of tony service and an intense devotion to privacy, said Gea Elika, founder of Elika Associates. The building houses the largest number of billionaires in the country, according to a recent PBS documentary, so the royal family won’t feel out of sorts. There is one catch, however: pied-à-terres are forbidden. “Perhaps an exception can be made for royalty,” Elika said.
A royal baby brings with him a royal list of demands, so Douglas Elliman broker Gail Sankarsingh reckoned that the 60-story 400 Fifth Avenue – where she oversees sales — might be his best bet. Amenities include maid service, room service, babysitting and an on-call doctor and dentist. The apartments – which offer “helicoptic” views, according to Sankarsingh — sit atop the five-star Langham Place hotel, ideal for entertaining guests, and a top-floor duplex penthouse recently hit the market asking $33 million.
Luxury waterfront condos stand side-by-side with seven townhouses at this Related Companies development, located in the West Village at 400 West 12th Street. Georgie would be neighbors with designer Marc Jacobs, who might be persuaded to make him some bespoke onesies. But perhaps most important to the privacy-obsessed royal family would be the option of “a quick getaway in the royal motorcade along the West Side highway to the West 30th Street helipad,” Elika said, “for an easy commute back to the U.K.”
The full-block condo project by the Witkoff Group has attracted its share of controversy over alleged flouting of zoning laws, but buyers have taken to it like ducks to water, with all 91 units sold out within four months of launching sales. Still, maybe Georgie would manage to find his way in. If the prince “wanted to really shake things up,” Elika said, “he could surprise us all and choose 150 Charles Street as a homage to his grandfather [Prince Charles].”
The iconic building at 768 Fifth Avenue – where London’s One Hyde Park developer Christian Candy’s penthouse was recently listed for $59 million — is the city’s premier destination for Afternoon Tea, according to Elliman’s Stock, who describes the ceremony at the Palm Court as a “royal treat.” Plus, The Plaza has played host to a number of venerable guests, including, in 1964, the Beatles, who Stock said are favorites of members of the monarchy. “Little George will have been brought up on that music through his parents,” she said.
The only Brooklyn residence to make the cut, the condos at Richard Meier On Prospect Park offer easy access to the sport of kings, horse racing. His Majesty could learn the fine sport at the Kensington Stables, the borough’s only remaining stable, near Prospect Park, according to Stock. Plus, with a lot of criticism directed at the royals for exorbitant spending, one could understand why this building might be appealing: A one-bedroom apartment recently sold for $895,000.