The Real Deal New York

Wildenstein mansion sets new NYC townhouse record with $79.5M sale

Buyer is linked to Chinese conglomerate HNA's New York chief
By Katherine Clarke | April 05, 2017 05:11PM

From left: 19 East 64th Street, David Wildenstein (credit: Getty Images) and Roy Liao

Art heir David Wildenstein has closed on the sale of his Upper East Side townhouse for $79.5 million, or about $3,180 a foot, setting a new record for the priciest townhouse ever sold in Manhattan.

The buyer of the property is an entity affiliated with Roy Liao, CEO of HNA Holdings Group, the same company behind the $2.2 billion deal to buy 245 Park Avenue, records show.

A spokesperson for HNA did not immediately respond to a request for comment and the Wildensteins could not be reached. Carrie Chiang of the Corcoran Group represented the Wildensteins in the deal, but was unavailable for comment.

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The 25,000-square-foot, 41-foot-wide property, at 19 East 64th Street, is the former location of the Wildenstein Gallery and dates back to the 1930s.

Liao is not the property’s first suitor.

Music mogul Len Blavatnik recently sued Wildenstein, claiming his family reneged on its promise to sell him the property for $79 million. A judge tossed the suit last month, saying the verbal agreement was not legally binding.

In 2014, the nation of Qatar walked away from a $90 million deal to buy the house, which it had planned to use as a consulate.

Previously, the record for a Manhattan townhouse was held by the the Harkness mansion, purchased by financier J. Christopher Flowers for $53 million a decade ago.