SELLER: Michael Showalter
LOCATION: Brooklyn, NY
SIZE: (approx.) 2,500 square feet, 4 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms
YOUR MAMA’S NOTES: A bow-fronted limestone townhouse in the historic and quickly gentrifying Lefforts Manor district of Prospect Lefforts Garden in Brooklyn, NY, has been sold for its full asking price of $1.6 million. The seller, per property records, was comedy writer, actor, director, and producer Michael Showalter who co-wrote, co-starred in, and co-produced the 2001 feature length summer camp send up “Wet Hot American Summer” as well as the this year’s popular, eight-episode prequel series of the same name on Netflix. Mister Showalter acquired the three-story, neo-Renaissance style residence near the southeastern corner of Prospect Park in September 2010 for $800,000 and it doesn’t take a mathematics genius or even a bejeweled abacus to see that the upwardly mobile absurdist comedian doubled his real estate money in just five years.
A careful inspection of the floor plan included with digital marketing materials indicates the circa 1910 residence is actually divided into two separate but unequal apartments that together have four bedrooms and three bathrooms in about 2,500-square-feet. The larger duplex on the upper two floors, which retains original woodwork and inlaid parquet flooring, features a raised stoop entry, a proper foyer, and a double parlor divided by a slender pair of fluted, carved wood columns. In the rear parlor room — marked as “music room” on the floor plan — built-in bookshelves flank a gas-fired fireplace with a wood column supported mantelpiece and baby blue glass tile surround. A separate, partially wood-paneled and — let’s be honest, real estate obsessed butter beans — sadly window-free dining room opens over a long peninsula to an also unfortunately windowless galley style kitchen fitted with granite counter tops, honed marble back splash, slate tile floors, average quality appliances, and harmless if quintessentially quotidian white, raised-panel cabinetry.
At some point previous to Mister Showalter’s ownership, a small bathroom was awkwardly tacked on to the ass-end of the parlor floor. While an arguably convenient addition that means residents and guests do not have to climb stairs to use the restroom it’s also the reason the dining room no longer has windows. Next to the bathroom, a compact mud porch holds a stacked washer and dryer and connects through to the nearly 1,200-square-foot backyard — covetously spacious, to be sure, by urban standards — that includes a sunny flagstone terrace and a tree-ringed and foliage-enshrouded patch of grass. Upstairs, two guest bedrooms, one with a glass slider that opens to a flat rooftop and potential deck, overlook the backyards of the surrounding townhouses. The street-side master bedroom, with built-in window seating as well as an adjoining sitting room, less than ideally shares a closet-lined and sink-equipped pass through dressing area with the larger of the two guest bedrooms and, even less than ideally, all three bedrooms share a single, small and windowless but fortunately sky-lit hall bathroom.
The semi-subterranean “English basement,” which does not appear on the floor plan to be directly accessible from the upper level duplex, has a separate, under-the-stoop entry, open living/dining/kitchen area, a depressingly windowless bedroom marked as an “office” on the floor plan, an ordinary but at least windowed bathroom, and a back door that leads out to the backyard.
According to the property gossip queen at the New York Post, who first sussed out the sale, Mister Showalter is looking for a larger residence to house his family.
Listing photos and floor plan: Corcoran