SELLER: Giancarlo Giametti
LOCATION: New York City, NY
SIZE: 2 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms
YOUR MAMAS NOTES: Your Mama has been camped out on the west coast for too long a time and feel we could all use a de-voon dose of New York City real estate fabulosity so we thought we'd have a wee look-see at the über-posh pied-a-terre of high fashion icon Valentino Garavani's business and life partner of 50 years Giancarlo Giammetti.
The always far too tan Signore Valentino, along with the also always far too tan Signore Giammetti, have built an empire of extremely expensive taste and style on the well-dressed backs of wealthy women who would happily claw each others' eyes out for one of Valentino's signature red dresses. The man-couple live extraordinarily pampered lives with devoted assistants and aide de camps and an asset and property portfolio that includes a substantial yacht and luxurious homes in Paris, London, New York and Gstaad. They cavort and caveezle around the world in glittering locales with kings and queens, politicians, showbiz types and a small army of haute couture clad women with lacquered hair and earrings that cost more than Your Mama and the Dr. Cooter's house. The couple's long, complicated, glamorous, exhausting and exceedingly luxurious life was expertly documented in Vanity Fair editor and writer Matt Tyrnauer's fascinating 2009 film Valentino: The Last Emperor.
Property records and previous reports show that the pied-a-terre at the impossibly elegant Pierre Hotel on Fifth Avenue was purchased in August of 2007 for $7,500,000. Records show the impeccably turned out part-time residence was purchased in only the name of Signore Giammetti; Valentino, apparently, has his own pied a terre a few block up Fifth Avenue.
Some of the children who have not fried their mind on the dope or sotted their brain with booze may recall that Signore Giammetti acquired the apartment from a Frenchman named Pierre Berge, another business-minded man and long-time companion of a fashion world legend. Mister Berge, of course, was the business brains behind the genius of the inimitable Yves Saint Laurent, a man who Your Mama can best describe in a litany of "f" words: feisty, fabulous, fey, formidable, ferocious, facile, fascinating, and finely-tuned to his own creative juices.
Signore Giammetti first listed his lavishly and pain-stakingly renovated pad at the Pierre Hotel a year ago in June 2010 with an asking price of $12,500,000; Last week the price was slashed dramatically to $10,800,000.
Listing information and marketing materials from the time Signore Giammetti acquired the 2 bedroom and 2 bathroom apartment from Monsieur Berge show the corner living/dining area measures a baronial 17 feet wide and stretches more than thirty feet with picture windows that frame expansive views of and across Central Park all the way to the George Washington Bridge that spans the mighty Hudson River. Signore Giammetti possesses a first rate art collection, some of which can be seen in the living room that includes one of Richard Prince's Nurse paintings.
Signore Giammetti–along with his smart and deeply accomplished architect Peter Marino–either retained or installed substantial moldings and added floor to ceiling book cases in the dining area that flank disappearing pocket doors that open into the library/office/den/guest room. The walls of the living room glimmer seductively with aluminum leaf treated with a patina that removes glare, adds a depth and gives Your Mama the good kind of decorative goose pimples. We could never in a million years pull off an aluminum leafed room in our own home but damn if that isn't something to salivate over.
The apartment, although priced like a mansion with dedicated staff quarters tucked behind the kitchen, includes only a closet-sized and windowless but well-fitted kitchen. While this might be a deal breaker for some, remember chicka-hoohoos, this ten and some million dollar apartment has long been used and will likely continue to be used by the next owner as a part time crash pad. A cook's kitchen simply isn't required in a pied-a-terre, particularly when its located in a white glove building with hotel services that include room service from the upscale brasserie downstairs. That, of course, and this is New York goddam City where you can have anything–and we mean any thing–delivered day or night. Have a craving for kosher Chinese at three in the morning or a need for a little smokey-smokey at two in the afternoon? Just dial up the delivery, babycakes. Your Mama desperately misses that about New York but we'll stop ourselves before we get maudlin in our digression...
Signore Giammetti converted one of the bedrooms into a cerused oak paneled library/den/office that includes, a second set of floor-to-ceiling bookcases that house a flat screen tee-vee. Off the room's closet-lined dressing closet is a bathroom bathed in brown afromosia marble. The master suite, according to listing information, has an unobstructed park view, walls upholstered in buff to taupe colored horizontally striped silk, a large dressing closet and a small but "sumptuous flannel grey and white zebrino marble" en suite facility.
It should come as no surprise that a man like Signore Giammetti, who earned a substantial fortune catering to jet-setting women with the desire and dough to pay many tens of thousands of dollars for a couture luncheon suit or custom-designed ball gown would have, as is mentioned in the listing, custom-designed hardware throughout the apartment not to mention a high-tech iPod compatible sound system, an automated lighting system and shutters in the bedrooms that when opened disappear into the luxuriously deep casements.
Listing information shows Signore Giammetti monthly maintenance runs $6,705 which buys full access to hotel services, 24-hour concierge services, overnight shoe shine service, twice daily maid service, once monthly heavy cleaning service, valet parking and 24-hour room service from the high-end brasserie Le Caprice (within the Pierre Hotel) where a small stack of toast (with butter and jam) sets a rich person back seven bucks. The hotel also include a fitness center and hair salon.
Other residents of the hoity-toity hotel and apartment tower include an assortment of millionaires and billionaires such as hedge hog Martin Zweig who previously had his titanic triplex penthouse listed with a titanic $70,000,000 price tag and deceased financier Lionel Pincus whose vast duplex–once listed at $50,000,000–has long been caught in the crossfire between his children who want to sell and his lady-friend Princess Firyal of Jordan who does not. Others who own at The Pierre include Harrod's owner and noted royal-hater Mohamed Al Fayed, media tycoon Sumner Redstone, and recent dee-vorcée fashion designer/socialite Tory Burch, who occupies a vast 9,000 square foot multi-unit combination spread on the 9th floor she kept after her dee-vorce from obscenely rich venture capitalist Chris Burch.
LATER SAME DAY: Have mercy! The least we could do is spell a person's name correctly, right? Well, somehow Your Mama, bless our own well-intentioned but boozy heart, misspelled Signore Giammetti's name the entire way through our discussion. We're just so damn embarrassed we can't stand it so we've returned to confess and fix our gross error.
listing photos: Brown Harris Stevens