With a little luck, an East Village townhouse owned by Polish royalty — and formerly by Hollywood teen-drama royalty — could reset the market for such properties in the neighborhood.
Alexi Lubomirski and his wife Giada on Wednesday listed their two-family home at 122 East 10th Street for $9.2 million. The recently renovated townhouse was home to actress Molly Ringwald, star of mid-1980s hits “Sixteen Candles,” “The Breakfast Club” and “Pretty in Pink,” until 2016, when she sold her unit to the Lubomirskis.
Cristina Cote and her mother Victoria Terri-Cote, of the boutique real estate firm Cote Luxury Real Estate, have the listing.
Cristina Cote said the pandemic has put a premium on flexible living spaces that townhouses like 122 East 10th Street provide. The house, designed by James Renwick Jr., who also designed St. Patrick’s Cathedral, is bi-sected into a lower quadruplex and a duplex on the upper floors.
“You want separation and privacy but convenience and closeness in the same building,” Cote said.
Lubomirski, a fashion photographer best known for shooting the wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, has built a career on capturing the images of stars including Beyonce, Demi Moore and Gwyneth Paltrow for publications such as Vogue and Harper’s Bazaar.
He’s also a descendant of Polish princes, though the use of noble titles is no longer allowed in Poland.
The townhouse market has been ablaze in recent months, with two neighborhood records falling since April. In Fort Greene, a townhouse that went into contract for $1 million over the asking price is poised to crush the local price record; the other is in Hudson Square.
Limited supply and a desire for more private homes with outdoor space are driving demand for townhouses, particularly in Manhattan and Brooklyn, according to Matthew Lesser of Leslie Garfield, a brokerage that specializes in townhouses.
“Downtown is the strongest townhouse market in all of New York,” Lesser said. “There is clearly strong demand for finished product.”
The city’s most expensive townhouses have historically been on the Upper East Side within one block of Central Park.
While rising interest rates and stock market uncertainty have caused the housing market to cool recently, the townhouse market, a subset of the city’s luxury market, has not.
“Our buyers are not as rate-sensitive as [buyers at] cheaper price points,” Lesser said. “A softening equity market is going to lower consumer confidence; we just haven’t seen it yet.”
While it’s anyone’s guess what the Lubomirskis’ home will fetch, it could become the priciest two-family to sell in the East Village in years. Its asking price is within $1 million of the $9.9 million sale price for 327 East 9th Street, the priciest multifamily trade in the neighborhood since May 2017, according to data collected by TRD Pro.
The Lubomirskis’ home has recently been renovated with reclaimed oak floors that were once horse fences in the Hudson Valley region and Danby Marble from Vermont. Original details, such as the original chandelier in the kitchen, have been preserved.
Ringwald, 54, is still acting and has enjoyed a long and successful career, but could not sustain her teen stardom she achieved in the three John Hughes films from 1984 to 1986. According to Wikipedia, in the early 1990s she turned down the female lead roles for “Pretty Woman” and “Ghost,” which turned Julia Roberts and Demi Moore, respectively, into household names.