List Price: $3.199 million
Sale Price: $2.75 million
The Property: In the late 1960s, when the construction executive Albert Robin developed The Carlyle, the 40-story condo building at 1040 North Lake Shore Drive, he set aside a two-story aerie for himself and his family. Robin—a benefactor of Roosevelt University, which named its Schaumburg campus after him—died in March 2007 at age 95. On August 4, 2008, his heirs sold his 4,400-square-foot condo for the highest price ever paid for a home in the building.

Its wide eastern face draped with balconies that provide phenomenal views of Lake Michigan, The Carlyle has long been an elite address, in large part because it was built with comparatively large floor plans. "Even the one-bedrooms are bigger than most three-bedrooms on Lake Shore Drive," says Margaret Carlson, who lives in the building and was the Robin estate’s listing agent.

Several years ago, I visited the apartment of a widowed North Shore matron who had decamped from a gigantic North Shore estate to a condo in The Carlyle. She picked that building, she told me, because it was the only one she found downtown where she could bring her dining room table that sat 12 and its huge matching sideboards.

Robin’s former home occupies the northeast tier of the 36th floor, with a balcony facing the lake, and a rear piece of the 37th, where there are two more terraces. There are three bedrooms (one on 36 and two on 37) and four-plus baths. At the top of the building, beneath its distinctive pavilion roof, are a ballroom and an indoor pool.

The buyers, whose names do not yet appear in public records of the sale, will be only the second owners of the condo. According to Carlson, they were among multiple bidders for the unit. "It was a sought-after property," she says. "There’s nothing else like it."

Price Points: While this is the record price for a Carlyle condo—the next highest is the May sale of a 3,050-square-foot unit on the 14th floor for $2.4 million—it’s likely the new owners will have to spend more to update the condo. "In its day, [it] was very beautiful," Carlson says, but that was 40 years ago. The buyers will undertake a complete renovation before moving in, she says. Costs could easily top $1 million, given the size of the condo.

Listing Agent: Margaret Carlson of Rubloff, 312-368-5300