Murdoch ready to settle into $44m New York 'dream house'

Work is nearing completion on Rupert Murdoch’s new residence in mid-town New York. It’s a very large three-floor apartment in Fifth Avenue, overlooking Central Park.

When the renovations are finished, he and his wife Wendi will move from the loft-like apartment where they have been living in down-town Manhattan.

At the moment the three floors are covered with construction netting. Murdoch bought the triplex from the estate of multimillionaire Lawrence S Rockefeller two years ago for $44m, long before his possible takeover of the Wall Street Journal was even foreshadowed.

At the time, the monthly maintenance – the amount paid to the owners of the building – was over $21,000, but may have gone up since.

Renovation plans were filed the same year – but reconstruction of apartments, especially big ones, is a lengthy process in New York. How much the renovation is costing has not been disclosed.

The apartment was originally built in 1929, just before the big stock market crash. Its original owner was a well-known New York banker and stockbroker, Hugh B Baker.

The entrance to the apartment has a curving four-foot-wide staircase. According to a description in the New York Times, the main floor has a 20 ft by 20 ft library and a 20 ft by 38 ft living room looking out over Central Park.

The upper floor has four bedrooms, one with a fireplace. There is even a dressing room that measures 20 ft by 14 ft. On the roof there is a terrace and observatory.

What changes Murdoch has made in his new home have not been disclosed. There has, so far, been no response to requests for a guided tour of what Murdoch has described as his “dream house”.

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