Luxury contracts fall in Manhattan after strong two weeks

Market in flux one week after the city entered phase 2 of reopening

25 Park Row and 157 West 57th Street (25 Park Row and Beyond My Ken via Wikipedia)
25 Park Row and 157 West 57th Street (25 Park Row and Beyond My Ken via Wikipedia)

After two weeks of strong numbers, luxury contracts fell last week to just seven.

The slim total, which followed two weeks where contracts were at the highest rate since the shutdown, also coincided with the city’s first week of phase two. As part of the reopening, brokers were given the green light to resume in-person showings.

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Donna Olshan, who tracks luxury contracts in a weekly market report, noted that because of Covid-19 protocols, brokers cannot conduct showings in the way they used to — including piling large numbers of people into an apartment at once — meaning a sudden uptick in deals was unlikely.

“Before, you could wing it more,” she said. “This is not really an environment that you really can wing because you’re putting yourself at risk in terms of your health and whoever you live with or come in contact with, so you have to be careful and considerate — and you really have to stick with the protocols.”

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The most expensive deal last week was for a sponsor unit at Extell Development’s One57, which went into contract asking $27 million. The 4,193 square-foot, three-bedroom unit at 157 West 57th Street features 11-foot ceilings and views of Central Park. Extell declined to disclose details of the transaction.

The second-priciest deal was for a penthouse apartment at 25 Park Row, which was last asking $12.95 million. The Corcoran Group’s Chris Kann, who represented the New York–based buyers, told Olshan the buyers had seen the property before the pandemic, and then started negotiating.

“The ceilings are higher on this floor than the rest of the building, and it’s probably one of the more attractive penthouses I’ve seen in a long time,” Kann said of the property. “All views are unobstructed, and City Hall Park below has been redone.”

Write to Sylvia Varnham O’Regan at

Correction: An earlier version of the story misstated the name of Extell’s tower at 157 West 57th Street.

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