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Features

Joan Fontaine via Wiki Commons; all apartment images via Sotheby's International Realty Joan Fontaine via Wiki Commons; all apartment images via Sotheby's International Realty
Oscar-winning actress Joan Fontaine was born in Japan and died at her home in California, but spent part of her life as a New Yorker. She is best known for her role as Lina McLaidlaw Aysgarth in the Alfred Hitchock film Suspicion (1941), for which she won the Academy Award. She is also known for her roles in Rebecca and Letter from an Unknown Woman.

She spoke glowingly of her Upper East Side apartment at 160 East 72nd Street where she lived while performing on Broadway, attending film premieres and society events, and entertaining friends at home. It has changed hands since Ms. Fontaine's departure, and is now on the market for $8.75 million.
On her departure from New York, Ms. Fontaine said, "I sold the apartment for 20 times what I paid for it, and I moved to California." While we don't know what Ms. Fontaine originally paid for the apartment, it is clear that its timeless craftmanship and flowing layout continue to warrant a price at the higher end of the spectrum.

"I loved my New York apartment. I had a whole floor with a wonderful library" - Joan Fontaine

As one of the area's most prestigious cooperative buildings,160 East 72nd Street was erected in 1928 and features a splendid façade rich in interesting details such as decorative balconies double-height windows. While the building has only 21 graciously-proportioned apartments, Ms. Fontaine was far from the only big name to reside at the address. The Taylor & Levi-designed building was developed by Kingdon Gould, grandson of railroad magnate Jay Gould, and he and his family lived on the top four floors of the building. Lee Radziwill, socialite and sister of Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis, was another notable resident.

160 East 72nd Street floor plan

↓ The building is situated on cross-town 72nd Street between Lexington and Third avenues, three-and-a-half blocks from Central Park and moments from many cultural institutions.

↓ As with many fine pre-war apartments, the residence whisks you into a procession of spaces beginning with a private elevator foyer and then into a private gallery with adjacent walk-in coat closet and powder room.

160 East 72nd Street

↓ The entrance gallery's hand-painted silver wallpaper, exquisitely patterned floor, and graceful over-doors make for a gracious first impression.

160 East 72nd Street

↓ The 30-foot living room features 10’5” ceilings, incredible light from tall casement windows, a fireplace, and built-in bookshelves.

160 East 72nd Street

↓ The epitome of homey

↓ The home's entertaining spaces - the great room, library, and dining room - all overlook extra-wide 72nd Street.

↓ Soft northern light streams in through the building's beautiful arched windows.

160 East 72nd Street

↓ Ms. Fontaine brought the library’s ceiling beams, fireplace, and paneling from a monastery in Europe

160 East 72nd Street

↓ "If I was at home, I was entertaining." Ms. Fontaine's 21-foot formal dining room would have been ideal for it with triple exposures, high ceiling, and fireplace.

160 East 72nd Street

↓ At the heart of the apartment is a windowed kitchen outfitted with a butler’s pantry, custom cabinetry, marble countertops, and top-of-the-line appliances from Wolf, Sub-Zero, and Miele.

160 East 72nd Street

↓ The primary suite has south-facing garden views and boasts beautiful moldings, a fireplace, and en-suite marble bath.

160 East 72nd Street

↓ The second bedroom suite has beautiful moldings, high ceilings, blue wallpaper, and floor-to-ceiling French doors opening onto a Juliet balcony.

160 East 72nd Street
160 East 72nd Street

↓ The third bedroom also has garden views and a marble en-suite bath.

160 East 72nd Street

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