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List Price: $2,199,950
The Property: People who live on East Lake Shore Drive have great views of not only Lake Michigan but a very pretty public garden that lies next to the Drive. It’s a terrific spot, filled with flowers right now, but it is public, not a piece of your home.
That said, the East Lake Shore Drive condo apartment we’re visiting today does have its own private outdoor space. One of very few private gardens at an East Lake Shore Drive spot, it’s a charming hideaway, tucked down into an elbow of the building and surrounded by greenery and solitude. It’s also surrounded by some of the marvels of the city: the Hancock, the Palmolive building, and Bloomingdale’s.
And inside the home, you’re surrounded by some really remarkable finishes. The living room feels like it could be the same vintage as the 1922 building, but everything was brought in new in the last 13 years. Phil Raskin, the seller, wanted the home to feel like “a European private men’s club,” says Robert Hovermale, one of two Prudential Rubloff agents listing the condo for Raskin now that he’s moving to a larger home on a higher floor of the building.
All the rich wood paneling, the carved fireplace, and other details are new to the space. You’re surrounded by very luxurious materials in this condo, starting from the minute you arrive in your private elevator lobby where the walls are finished in silk. But in this home, it’s not just the walls it’s the floors, including rich wood in the living and dining rooms and fine tile floors throughout; and the ceilings: a gold-leaf dome in the dining room, in the kitchen, two lengths of tile ceiling that had to be laid by workers lying on their backs on scaffolding to hang it from the ceiling. And in the office, a cloud mural on the ceiling.
You get a lot of superior finishes in this home, but what you don’t get is the noise of Lake Shore Drive. The Drive is right outside the front windows, but it’s quiet enough in the living room to take a nap. That’s because the north-facing windows, in the living room and in the master bedroom, were replaced with airplane glass, so you get all the view and none of the noise.
There are more windows along the east side of the home, in the office, the dining room, the kitchen, and in the family room, where one window was enlarged to about three times its original size. It’s an urban view, so you’re looking at a nearby building and fire escapes, but you get a lot of eastern light. That’s added to the northern exposure of the front rooms, and western exposure in a second rear bedroom that goes out onto the terrace.
And there’s potential for even more garden space: a walled terrace on top of one of the building’s garages comes with the residence. It’s right beneath a sweet-smelling linden tree, so you might just create more garden like the other terrace. But as I show in the video, the seller had commissioned designs to build a conservatory attached to the home, surrounding the terrace with walls and a glass ceiling overhead, to create a private sanctuary hidden away from East Lake Shore Drive.
Price Points: Raskin’s asking price had been $2.8 million a couple of years ago, with a different agent. The price had come down to $2.39 million by early this year. Co-agents Hovermale and Mitch Serrano took over the listing in May, with a new asking price of $2,199,950. That’s about $900 a square foot, compared to the $794-a-foot sale price on this unit. The difference, Serrano says, is in the unique developable space out back and the very high level of finishes inside, not to mention the considerable rise in sale prices this year.