BUYERS: Jon Hamm and Jennifer Westfeldt
LOCATION: New York City, NY
SIZE: 2 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms
YOUR MAMAS NOTES: Like everybody else, Your Mama read almost two weeks ago now in The New York Post that 10-time Emmy nominated Mad Man star Jon Hamm and his long-time lady-mate, actress Jennifer Westfeldt (Notes from the Underbelly, 24, Kissing Jessica Stein), have just about completed renovations on the Upper West Side penthouse they bought last April (2013).
Well, children, we freely confess that y’all coulda blew this property gossip over with the breath of a grasshopper. It’s not in the least surprising the couple would own an apartment there—many L.A.-based Showbizzers keep a place in New York—but Your Mama’s booze-sotted brain simply doesn’t recall previously hearing or reading a thing about the couple’s penthouse purchase.
Mister Hamm’s dapper and beloved, if amoral, Mad Men character Don Draper and his younger and frustratingly namby-pamby French-Canadian (second) wife live in a sprawling, contemporary aerie on East 73rd Street and Park Avenue with a sunken living room and a city view terrace. But in real life, according to property records (and The New York Post) the (in)famously frequent free baller and his classically beautiful blond lady-mate paid $2,450,000 for a petite pre-war penthouse atop a Rosario Candela-designed building on a tree-lined street just half a block off Central Park.
We really haven’t a clue about Mister Hamm and Miz Westfeldts’ renovation plans but at the time of their June 2013 purchase the pint-sized penthouse had nicely high 10-foot ceilings and an efficient floor plan with two bedrooms and two bathrooms. Based on the floor plan included with digital marketing materials Your Mama loosely calculated there to be a bit more than 1,000 square feet of interior space and nearly as much space contained in a park view terrace that—but for the interjection of a sun room—wraps around the entire apartment.
A barely there entrance hall opens into the combination living and dining space that’s floored with an unsuccessful combination of terra cotta tile and parquet. One wall in the living room is anchored by a wood burning fireplace and another is punctured by a pair of doorless doorways that lead into an sky-lit sun room with a long, shoulder-height ribbon of casement windows and glass doors on either end that open to the east and west terraces. If anyone were to ask Your Mama—and no one did—we’d admit the sun room is an unwelcome aspect of this particular penthouse. The extra square footage is certainly a bonus but, frankly, it’s just too narrow and there are too many doors (and doorways) on too many walls.
The kitchen doesn’t make much of an appearance in listing photos from the time of Mister Hamm and Miz Westfeldt’s purchase—never a good sign as regard its condition or quality—but it was, at the time of their purchase, open to the dining area in a large cut out over the counter and does, we’re happy to report, have a window for light and ventilation. As is typical of a Rosario Candela designed apartment, whether huge or more modestly sizes like this penthouse, both of the poopers have windows for proper ventilation.
The lower end of the Upper West Side isn’t Your Mama’s first choice of residential locales in Manhattan and we’re not exactly thrilled with the easily (if expensively) changed flooring materials. And let’s not even further discuss that sun room since it makes Your Mama need a nerve pill with a brutal desperation. But, honestly kids, otherwise we sort of love this place.Contrary to the opinion of some, neither Your Mama nor The Doctor Cooter are real estate size queens so its somewhat wee size appeals to us. It’s on a great (if not exactly quiet) tree-lined street just half a block from the park and public transportation options are many and convenient. The dirty secret of urban terraces is that they’re filthy all the time with soot and dust but we still wouldn’t mind a park view terrace for barbecuing, boozing and the occasional doobie smoking. The bedrooms are on the small side but they’re decently separated and the larger of them has an en suite bathroom, itty-bitty as it may be. Closet space isn’t abysmal by Manhattan standards but it’s not so great either. Fortunately, listing details indicate there’s private storage space in the building that conveys with the penthouse so that’s a push (by Manhattan standards).
Listing details show the monthly charges—which include taxes—ring up to a $3,661 and include the building’s not exactly white glove services: part-time doormen and porter services, a live-in super, a bicycle storage room, and free laundry facilities, an extra-nice feature given that the building does not permit washers and dryers in individual apartments.
Back on the west coast Mister Hamm and Miz Westerfeldt have owned (and as far as we know occupied) for a decade or so a 3,142 square foot, 1920s Mediterranean perched above a perfectly lovely if undistinguished street in the flats of L.A.’s celebrity-saturated Los Feliz area. Property records show the couple bought the five bedroom and three bathroom residence, three easily walked blocks from the Vermont Avenue shopping and dining district—home of the dee-voon Skylight Books, in late December, 2002, for $900,000.
listing photos and floor plan: Corcoran (via StreetEasy)