When seeking a doorman building, look for a condo

He may be a budding doorman, but he's out of uniform. (Flickr photo by Photo-Fenix)

It’s just about the next best thing in Manhattan to having a chauffeured limousine always at your disposal.  That would be living in a doorman building.

Door personnel and concierges obviously do like to get paid for their work, and that means you’ll fork over plenty in common charges or maintenance fees to live in a doorman building.  In fact, the cost of all labor normally is the biggest budgetary item in such a building.

But the conveniences are manifold; I’m sure that I don’t have to enumerate them for you.

I got to wondering what percentage of buildings Continue reading

The Big Apple: Village townhouse is auctioned. More!


It took only three minutes, from 6:19 p.m. to 6:21 p.m., for the successful bidder to spend $6.634 million at a court-ordered auction yesterday of a Greenwich Village townhouse that had been listed at $9.95 million not long ago.

“I’m very happy with the price I paid,” said the affable bidder, 51, Continue reading

This is one ‘play’ in which nobody forgets a line

Patricio, my doorman, on the Upper West Side.

When the contract with 30,000 union employees of 3,200 buildings in Brooklyn, Queens, Staten Island and Manhattan is due to expire, you can count on the situation unfolding as it has periodically over the years.

There always is a drumbeat of dire consequences issued by Local 32BJ of the Service Employees International Union.  Then comes a strike authorization vote.  Meantime, property managers and boards of directors gear up for the worst.

It’s a like a play in which everyone has a part and has all the lines memorized until the curtain rises.

In fact, the worst sometimes happens, Continue reading