We don't often print rumors that no one is able to confirm (we prefer
to stick to items that either we can confirm independently or that
public records confirm), but in the last few weeks, two high-profile
celebrity couples have been widely rumored to have decamped -- real
estate-wise -- in New York City, and it wouldn't be right for us not
to acknowledge the talk that's out there.
First off, recall the 18-room mansion in Brooklyn's Park Slope area
that actors Paul Bettany and Jennifer Connelly sold late last year for
$8,450,000 (they now own a $6,920,000 penthouse co-op in Manhattan's
TriBeCa area). We wrote
on December 15, 2008 about that sale, and we remarked that the buyer
was a bit mysterious -- it was an LLC company named Harken Pretty LLC.
While we were unable to identify who was behind the LLC (it's hard to
identify who owns LLCs that are registered in New York, an d it's a
lot easier to ascertain who s behind LLCs in other states), we did
note at that time that "for all we know, a celebrity may well be
behind that company."
Now, the New York Post's Jennifer Gould Keil is reporting
today that rumors are "swirling" in Park Slope that Matthew Broderick
and Sarah Jessica Parker are the new owners of the mansion, which
currently has scaffolding around it and is undergoing a gut
renovation. Parker's rep is denying it, but Keil (whose late husband,
Braden, was one of the best at this kind of thing; Jennifer
undoubtedly has similar sources) noted today that the name of Parker's
production company, Pretty Matches, is similar to that of the Harken
Pretty LLC company that bought the mansion.
Broderick and Parker currently live in Manhattan's West Village.
Meanwhile, in the last month-plus, rumors also have swirled that Tom
Cruise and Katie Holmes were the mystery buyers who paid $15,075,000
to purchase an 8,113-square-foot town house at 42 West 12th Street in
New York City. Our friends over at the Real Estalker first published
the rumor on May 28, and after that, all the gossips (real estate and
otherwise) in Manhattan started pumping various sources for
information. It's still unclear just who the brownstone's buyer was,
however; Cruise's reps also are denying it, and about a week ago, New
York magazine suggested
that other possible buyers who fit the characteristics of the new
owners (as described by a doorman on the block) were Julia Roberts and
Danny Moder, Claire Danes and Hugh Dancy, and even Neil Patrick Harris
and David Burtka. So who knows for sure.
Check out Curbed's coverage of the Cruise rumor,
which includes pictures of the town house.
Regardless, Cruise continues to own a unit in the Felt building in the
East Village, as we have noted
in the past.