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This Old Brownstone: Vila Asks $11.5 M. for East Side House (Guess What: He Renovated!)

Back in 2002, when the bearded home-renovations guru Bob Vila Robert J. "Bob" Vila (born June 20, 1946) is an American home improvement television show host known for This Old House (1979–1989), Bob Vila's Home Again (1990–2005) and Bob Vila (2005–2007).  listed his Tribeca loft (a floor beneath Mariah Carey’s place) for $5,250,000, The Observer teased tease  
v. teased, teas·ing, teas·es
1. To annoy or pester; vex.

2. To make fun of; mock playfully.

 him for demanding more than $1.8 million over what he had paid two years earlier.

Mr. Vila, who spent the 80’s hosting the PBS PBS
 in full Public Broadcasting Service

Private, nonprofit U.S. corporation of public television stations. PBS provides its member stations, which are supported by public funds and private contributions rather than by commercials, with educational, cultural,
 show This Old House, finally sold the place in 2004 for $3.725 million, barely making a profit—and maybe losing a bit, depending on how much renovations cost.

But he moved on. That year he spent $4 million on a 110-year-old brownstone brownstone, red to brown variety of sandstone. Its unusual color is caused in some instances by the presence of red iron oxide which acts as a cement, binding the sand grains together.  at 21 West 75th Street. Its previous owners, who had both just died, bought the place back during World War II. Their brownstone was broken up into nine units.

Now Mr. Vila is asking nearly three times what he paid in 2004.

After renovating the brownstone with his son Chris, he’s put it on the market for $11.5 million. Their renovation was filmed for season 15 of the TV show Bob Vila’s Home Again: Clips like “Salvaging the Sink and Removing Asbestos Tile” or “Installing the Chimney Liner” are available in all their artful art·ful  
1. Exhibiting art or skill: "The furniture is an artful blend of antiques and reproductions" Michael W. Robbins.

 glory online.

“The renovation was completed several weeks ago, actually,” said the listing broker, CORE Group’s David Gergely. The house was refurbished into two duplexes (including a duplex penthouse penthouse

Enclosed area on top of a building. A penthouse can be an apartment on the roof or top floor of a building or a structure on the roof housing the top of an elevator shaft, air-conditioning equipment, or stairs leading to the roof.
 with two glass skylights and a roof terrace), plus a full-floor apartment. But then there are the rear half-floor apartments on the first and fourth floors, which Mr. Vila couldn’t touch because there are still rent-stabilized tenants there.

To describe the renovated units, the listing boasts some excellent house lingo Lingo - An animation scripting language.

[MacroMind Director V3.0 Interactivity Manual, MacroMind 1991].
: The floors are quarter sawn ash; the bathroom fixtures are high-end chrome; the millwork is custom.

Meanwhile, the penthouse is being rented for the year at around $15,000 per month, and the duplex downstairs has been filled at around $10,000. Both those leases will be finished by this time next year—“we just wanted to produce an income for the landlord,” Mr. Gergely said, “that’s why we rented out them out.” And if they’re patient, buyers could buy the place to eventually use as a single-family mansion.

But not everything has been smooth. In December 2005, a neighbor complained in the New York Post The New York Post is the 13th-oldest newspaper published in the United States and the oldest to have been published continually as a daily.[3] Since 1976, it has been owned by Australian-born billionaire Rupert Murdoch's News Corporation and is one of the 10  that “non-English-speaking workers” drilled from Vila’s brownstone straight through the wall. “I am a 9/11 survivor,” the neighbor said. “I can’t sit here with this ash and dust.”

“That was way before I came in,” Mr. Gergely told The Observer. “As far as I know, there are no outstanding issues.”
Copyright 2008 The New York Observer
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Author:Max Abelson
Publication:The New York Observer
Date:Mar 4, 2008
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