Rihanna may have found love in a hopeless place, but for her former rented penthouse, things seem just plain hopeless.
That’s because the 4,647-square-foot condo between New York City’s Chinatown and Soho neighborhoods has been languishing on the market for about a decade.
The property, on Lafayette Street, is currently listed for just under $16 million. According to the listing, which is publicly visible via StreetEasy, the apartment spans two different floors and features a wrap-around balcony, 13-foot ceilings, four bedrooms and three bathrooms. The building formerly served as a manufacturing facility, but was converted to condos in 2004.
StreetEasy estimates that if a buyer put about 20 percent down, the monthly mortgage payments would be just $73,000 per month.
Though the listing doesn’t mention Rihanna, the New York Post reported that the Barbadian pop star behind hits such as “Umbrella” and “Diamonds” rented out the unit between 2013 and 2017. Rihanna was reportedly paying $39,000 per month when she first occupied the unit, though in a turn of events many New Yorkers can probably relate to, her rent steadily increased over the ensuing years.
By the time she left, Rihanna was reportedly shelling out $50,000 per month.
According to the Post, celebrity fashion photographer Antoine Verglas owns the property.
Property records cited by StreetEasy show that the penthouse was last purchased in 2005. It then went up for sale again in 2009 for about $14 million. It saw several price drops that year and bottomed out at $9.7 million, then went off the market without selling. It went back up for sale in 2013, 2016, 2017 and 2018 — but never sold.
A number of brokerages have held the listing over the years, but today it’s being handled by Corcoran agent Dana Power.
It’s unclear exactly why this particular unit has struggled for so long, though there have been reports of a softening New York City luxury real estate market for years now. A report from Redfin last summer also indicated that a number of economic and political factors have kept high-end buyers at bay.
Last week, The Atlantic additionally reported that when it comes to luxury Manhattan real estate, “the bust is upon us” and about half of the borough’s new luxury condo units are empty.
Making matters tougher still for sellers and their agents, New York City recently passed a “mansion tax” on properties costing more than $1 million. The tax has been blamed for dragging down luxury sales even further.
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