YOUR MAMA’S NOTES: In 2005 celebrity real estate gossip column regular Hank Azaria paid self-portraiting superstar artist Cindy Sherman $4.625 million for an approximately 4,000 square foot loft apartment in a 19th century red brick warehouse building in the heart of New York City’s once dicey now tourist swarmed SoHo district.
The four-time Emmy winner — he pops up from time to time on the Showtime series “Ray Donovan” and for the last 25 years has, by his own count, voiced more than 100 characters on “The Simpsons” — first put the three bedroom and three bathroom loft for lease in 2011 at $16,000 per month. Eventually Mister Azaria and his wife, retired actress turned family therapist Katie Wright, decided to sell the loft and — as Your Mama was first told by The Bizzy Boys at Celebrity Address Aerial — surreptitiously unloaded the place in an off-market deal last year to a trust associated with several homes owned by 1990s rom-com queen Meg Ryan.
Miz Ryan, who recently parted romantic ways with veteran rock star John Mellencamp, has kept a low professional profile since the star-studded 2008 box office slug “The Women” and the 2009 silver screen turkey “Serious Moonlight.” Over the last four or five years she’s popped up only rarely and briefly on a couple of television programs such as “Web Therapy” and “Curb Your Enthusiasm.” She’s ripe for an honest to goodness comeback, don’t some of y’all think? Your Mama doesn’t really care but Hollywood sure does love a comeback. Anyhoodles, poodles…
This property gossip really can’t say what if any alterations and/or reconfigurations may have made in the interim but at the time Mister Azaria leased the loft in 2011 the published (in “Elle Decor”) and now officially celebrity pedigreed loft had convenient direct entry through a key-lock elevator, a small entrance vestibule, a mud hall and a 50-foot long entrance loggia with no fewer than five window seats. French doors open(ed) from the loggia to a 700-square-foot main living space with original, narrow gauge wood floors and more than half a dozen exposed steel columns.
The adjacent but separate, u-shaped kitchen has — or had — jet black slate tiles on the floor, butcher block counter tops on the white cabinetry and pressed tin on the ceiling. Butcher block counter tops and pressed tin ceilings aren’t Your Mama’s decorating thing But they’re certainly acceptable choices in a classic New York City loft and — let’s be honest — are hardly as unusual or disturbing a choice as the huge opening that was created over the sink in order to bring in light and air from the over-sized air-shaft windows at the rear of the loft. Air and light in an otherwise windowless kitchen are, most assuredly, Martha Stewart-worthy “Good Things.” But look closely, children. The opening in the kitchen actually opens into a passage that connects the master bedroom to the master bathroom. That means after y’all finish your shower or whatever and make you’re butt-nekkid way to the bedroom to select the day’s attire you must pass through that damn passage where the dish-washing minimum wage cleaning gal can get an up close peep at all of y’alls’ parts that aren’t covered by a bath towel. And who needs that to happen? Certainly not the cleaning lady, that’s who. But we digress again…
Off the main living space is or was a reasonably roomy and also windowless yet pleasantly cocoonish media room with exposed brick wall and built-in entertainment system. In between and only accessible from the media room and the master bedroom Mister Azaria filled a large, irregularly shaped room with an army of frightful, professional-grade body working equipment. That is absolutely not what this gin swilling property gossip would do with all that square footage in space-starved lower Manhattan but that’s really apropos of nada, is it?
Mister Azaria and his wife didn’t leave The Big Apple but rather decamped to a two-unit combination apartment in a decidedly dignified if second-tier full service pre-war building on Central Park West. They paid, as per records and reports, $9,590,000 for the three bedrooms and 4.5 bathroom cooperative that has unobstructed views over Central Park. Our research indicates Mister and Missus Azaria also keep a four bedroom and five bathroom Craftsman-style home tucked deep into a Beverly Hills canyon that Mister Azaria purchased in 2000 — right after his quickie marriage to Helen Hunt — for $2 million and briefly had on the market in 2010 for $3.6 million.
Miz Ryan sold her picture perfect Spanish-style Bel Air mini-compound in 2012 for $11.125 million to — as per property records — digital shopping mogul Adam Bernhard. And, as far as we know, she still has her rustic-luxe, barn-like bay front home on Martha’s Vineyard’s scenic and somewhat infamous Chappaquiddick Island that she scooped up in 2006 for $6.5 million and had photographed in all its easy-breezy waterside glory a couple years ago for Elle Décor.
Listing photos and floor plan: Stribling