Len Blavatnik says that David Wildenstein reneged on an oral agreement with him to sell the art heir’s family townhouse in Manhattan to Blavatnik for $79 million. Wildenstein says that his words were not a commitment to sell. Therein lies the problem between the two Jewish mega “richies.”
The home is called a townhouse, but it is really a mansion. Located at 19 East 64th Street, the mansion boasts 20 foot ceilings, a paneled elevator, a staircase and a paneled salon on its third floor which was imported from the 18th century home of a Parisian prince. The limestone building encompasses 20, 500 square feet.
Last October Len Blavatnik’s company Access Industries hit David Wildenstein with a $10 million lawsuit for breach of promise over Wildenstein’s refusal to sell the home as agreed. Now The New York Post reports that Wildenstein’s lawyers have filed papers dismissing the suit as “frivolous and hastily contrived” because no promise was ever actually made and that the two men did nothing more than engage in speculation while schmoozing over the phone.
David Wildenstein eventually sold 19 East 64th Street to another buyer for $81 million. Last summer it was listed at as mush as $100 million.
So lets recap. Two super rich people are taking up the tax payers’ money and the court’s time in a lawsuit over really nothing more than one man’s anger at not getting everything that he wants all of the time. The American public is dealing with its most divisive Presidential election since the Civil War Era, there are controversies over Russian hacking and the UN Security Council resolution against Israel, ISIS is still killing people, Syria is still embroiled in a civil war where countless civilians are dying everyday, but what’s really important is that Len Blavatnik and David Wildenstein have a judge settle their little disagreement over a house which costs more than most countries in the world are worth.
From the listing by Cushman and Wakefield:
A rare opportunity to secure one of the most notable, architecturally significant buildings steps off Madison Avenue. For the first time since 1932, this location is now being offered on a long term basis for lease or sale.
The mansion is situated among global luxury brands, world-renowned art galleries and prestigious hotels, and is immediately adjacent to the future 24, 000 square foot Bottega Veneta flagship which is slated to open in 2017. Surrounding retailers include Chanel, Goyard, Alexander McQueen, Loro Piana, Givenchy, Hermes and Graff.
Designed by Gilded Age architect, Horace Trumbauer, the limestone-clad building has soaring
20 foot ceilings on the ground, second and third floors. In addition to the paneled elevator that reaches all floors, a sweeping staircase connects the reception rooms to offices and meeting rooms on the upper floors of the building. On the third floor, an entire paneled salon that was in Talleyrand’s 18th Century Parisian townhouse has been re-assembled within the building as an executive office.