Gothic-style ‘Inventing Anna’ property is on the market

The stunning New York building made famous in the Netflix series Inventing Anna, is currently up for sale with an eye-watering price tag of US$135 million.

By way of a recap, the six storey, Gothic-style building features in the hit series as the space convicted conwoman Anna Sorokin tried to lease for her private club.

The series Inventing Anna is based on the true story of Sorokin, who claimed to be a German heiress named Anna Delvey and managed to convince the upper echelons of New York society of her pedigree.

In the process ‘the SoHo grifter’ swindled financial institutions, banks, hotels, and acquaintances to the tune of US$245,000.

The real-life Sorokin was arrested in 2017 and is currently in the US, awaiting extradition after being found guilty of Grand Larceny.

But in terms of the real estate featured in the TV series, it was the picturesque Park Avenue South building which truly stole the show.

Located at 281 Park Avenue South, the property was completed in 1894 by architects Robert W Gibson and Edward J Neville Stent for the Protestant Episcopal Church’s Domestic and Foreign Missionary Society, according to Dirt.

Over the years it served as an office building for various religious groups before being purchased by Aby Rosen of RFR Holding for US$50 million in 2014.

‘An engineering marvel of its time’. Source: The Alexander Team

It was at this point that the landmark building caught the eye of the real-life Sorokin, who attempted to lease the property and swindle her way into establishing her eponymous private club on the premises.  

Sorokin wasn’t successful, with the lease instead going to the cofounder of Sweden’s Fotografiska photography museum, Jan Broman, who was looking to open a sister site in New York.

“Following a significant $30 million renovation during which the interior was thoroughly overhauled by the CetraRuddy architecture firm, Fotografiska opened its doors in 2019 and quickly became a popular New York attraction,” Dirt explains.

Now the property is on the market for the first time in a decade and is represented by Tal and Oren Alexander, who just left Douglas Elliman to launch their own firm Official.

Source: The Alexander Team

In their official listing for the site, the Alexander Team describes the building as a “landmark property” and “an important building in the history of American architecture”, noting its steel frame and carved stone façade make it an “engineering marvel of its time”.

“281 Park Avenue South is more akin to a priceless artwork than to a real estate asset,” they state.

“An inimitable character of New York City history and pop culture lore, this is truly a unique ownership opportunity with global appeal.”

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Cassandra Charlesworth

Cassandra Charlesworth is a features writer for Elite Agent Magazine with over 15 years’ journalism experience in metropolitan and regional newsrooms. She has a specialist interest in real estate, tech disruption and a good old-fashioned “yarn”.