USSR-born and raised oligarch buys most expensive New York townhouse

USSR-born and raised oligarch buys most expensive New York townhouse
Leonid Blavatnik

The four-story mansion had been used as a gallery by the Wildenstein family for 85 years before Blavatnik bought it.

The new owner of the most expensive townhouse in New York has been named: the $79.5-million Manhattan mansion was bought by Ukrainian oligarch Leonid Blavatnik, according to The Real Deal.

The deal to buy the Upper East Side house at 19 East 64th Street was made last April. Back then, the seller, Asian conglomerate HNA Group, revealed the sum, but not the buyer.

The four-story mansion had been Wildenstein art gallery for 85 years before becoming Blavatnik’s property. The house was built in the 1930s, it is 12.5 meters wide, and its area is 2322 square meters, which makes $34,238 for a square meter.

The Real Deal reminds that Blavatnik had tried to buy the mansion a year earlier. The deal fell through, and he sued David Wildenstein accusing him of using his offer to get a higher price from another buyer. The court declined the suit.

New York Post sources claim that Blavatnik is going to redecorate the mansion and use it as a family home. It is not going to be cheap, but money is definitely not a problem for a person whose fortune Forbes estimates at $20.5 billion. Blavatnik is considered the richest resident of Great Britain, and he ranks 40th on the world’s wealthiest list.

Blavatnik owns a few more buildings in New York, on which he spent over $150 million.

The previous record price of a Manhattan townhouse was set about 10 years ago: the Harkness mansion was bought by investor J. Christopher Flowers for $53 million.

Last September, Blavatnik was mentioned as one of the three Americans associated with Russian businesses, who made large donations to Donald Trump’s presidential campaign. Blavatnik, who has both American and British citizenships, contributed $383.000 to the account of the National Committee of the Republican Party in April 2016 and gave another million to Trump's inauguration fund.



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