Uncle Sam buys $16M penthouse at 50 UN Plaza — one flight down from the UK’s pad

U.S. had been renting a full-floor penthouse at the building for its ambassador, starting with Nikki Haley
By Mary Diduch | June 10, 2019 08:30AM

50 United Nations Plaza

50 United Nations Plaza

The United States is officially an owner at 50 United Nations Plaza.

The U.S. Mission to the United Nations picked up a 37th-floor sponsor penthouse at the Turtle Bay tower for $15.85 million, according to a public record posted Friday afternoon. For the full-floor, roughly 5,900-square-foot home, that comes out to $2,689 per square foot.

It was not immediately clear if the new purchase was for the same unit Uncle Sam had already been renting, beginning with former U.S. Ambassador Nikki Haley, and if the pad will house Acting U.S. Ambassador Jonathan Cohen. A request for comment wasn’t immediately returned.

The New York Times reported last fall that the U.S. dropped $52,701 to install custom mechanical curtains at Haley’s residence, pointing to a $58,000-a-month penthouse on the 40th floor of the building.

Regardless, the U.S. appears to have gotten a deal for its latest purchase. Zeckendorf Marketing had put it on the market in 2015 for $24.25 million, according to StreetEasy.

Zeckendorf Development and Global Holdings developed the 43-story, 88-unit luxury building, located steps from the UN Secretariat Building. Designed by Foster + Partners, the building comes with a 75-foot pool, sauna and fitness center.

The U.S.’s new residence is also just one flight down from another full-floor penthouse unit recently bought by the British Consulate for $15.9 million.

The buy, which The Guardian reported is for Antony Phillipson, the UK’s trade commissioner for North America and consul general in New York, drew backlash from some across the pond as a lavish expense, particularly amid Brexit negotiations.

And in 2015, some in New Zealand called the purchase of a 3,000-square-foot, $7.9 million pad — meant for the head of New Zealand’s mission to the United Nations — on the 18th floor also too extravagant.