TV ratings pioneer Arthur Nielsen’s former estate sells for $6.8M

The Tudor-style estate was designed by architect Benjamin Marshall

Arthur Nielson and 720 Ardsley Road (Chicago Community Trust, Zilllow)
Arthur Nielson and 720 Ardsley Road (Chicago Community Trust, Zilllow)

A former Winnetka home of Arthur Nielsen, founder of the A.C. Nielsen Company, sold for $6.8 million after four months on the market.

Built in 1937, the 17,000-square-foot Tudor-style estate was designed by architect Benjamin Marshall. Marshall’s portfolio includes notable Chicago buildings such as the Drake Hotel, the Edgewater Beach Hotel, the South Shore Country Club and the Blackstone Hotel and Theater.

The 1.5-acre property is on a private road and includes a tennis court, wine cellar, putting green, four-car garage and swimming pool, according to the listing. The property was also featured in a 2014 issue of Traditional Home magazine.

David and Whitney Sinclair bought the six-bedroom, six-bath in 2008, renovated it and listed it twice last year for $6.9 million before the listing was removed. It was relisted in April for $6.9 million, and was under contract a month later, before that deal appeared to fall through and the property was put back on the market. It was quickly put back under contract in June, according to Multiple Listing Service data.

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Sarah Lyons of Compass represented the sellers and Dawn Mckenna and Kathryn Moor of Coldwell Banker Realty represented the buyers.

Nielsen was born in Chicago and founded his company in 1923, where he further advanced the field of market research for radio and television. In the 1950s he became the pioneer of the Nielsen TV Ratings system, which measures audience viewership and demographics.

Winnetka is among the city’s smallest and wealthiest suburbs, with a population of about 12,000. The town had one of the area’s most expensive listings, a 1902 home that was asking $16 million. That property closed this week for $12.75 million and the buyers plan to tear it down and build a new home.

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