'Selling New York' Episode 7: Still Not 'Closing New York'

After seven episodes of HGTV's "Selling New York" the message is clear: Nobody is buying anything! Still, there are a lot of fantastic properties with owners so anxious to sell that they'll share their private homes on national TV.

Unfortunately for them, real estate voyeurism doesn't close the deal. There are a lot of persnickety rich people out there.

For real action, HGTV should consider a spin-off series called "Closing New York."
In Thursday's episode titled "Extra Special Spaces," the Core Group and the Gumley Haft Kleier clan relayed the old adage that less is more and more is too much. Yes, it is cool to see an imported Bahia granite wall, a Manhattan pad with an indoor pool, a split-level kitchen, and 2,600 square feet in terrace space. But as we all know, "cool to see" doesn't mean it will close the deal.

Core's Maggie Kent didn't sell the $13.995 million 7,000-square-foot, five-bedroom, seven-bathroom SoHo property with 37 windows. So for now she's not getting that $839,700 commission.

Same goes for Lioness Michele Kleier for the Carnegie Hill property at 3 East 95th St. The house listed at $24.75 million with 11,700 square feet, five bedrooms, seven and a half bathrooms, and the aforementioned indoor pool with hot tub. Ouch to her bank account! She's not bringing home the potential whopping $1.485 million commission.

Again, "Showing
New York," yes. "Closing New York," no.

It's the quirky details that keep us entertained on "Selling New York." While the drama lacks, the outrageous never disappoints. Some of my favorite moments include:

1. Instead of an energy psychic, we have a interior designer Thomas Callaway checking out 3 East 94th St. He tells us he has celebrity clients that include Steve Martin, Larry David and Dylan McDermott. He doesn't tell us who his picky celebrity family is that can afford $25 million on "housage." All we know is that the secret celebrities will probably like the skylights and the indoor swimming pool. Callaway, we learn, isn't into short-plank engineered flooring or out-of-proportion, postage-stamp bathroom sinks.

2. Even the sexy Maggie Kemp can't impress her super-rich British client. She shows him a place where President Obama, former President Clinton and George Clooney have partied. Steven and Judy Gluckstern, the philanthropic couple with the property for sale, can't entice the Brit, even though it has steps designed by the engineers who worked on I.M. Pei's pyramid outside the Louvre. Picky Brits!

3. Calling the Puck Building the "Will & Grace" building probably doesn't impress someone potentially spending $15 million on real estate.

4. Rich people are like us! They use Sonicare toothbrushes too!

5. A Michele Kleier Tip: Wear low heels when showing townhouses.

6. Unusual furniture can complicate the sale of a space for people who can't let go of what they see in front of them. Especially when plush velour is juxtaposed with neoclassic and art-deco original design.

7. The number of times Kemp and Kleier reference their properties by saying that opportunities like these don't open up often: at least 4.

8. Question: How does one get to be in the Kleier family circle where good news is Champagne and bad news is a wine, but either way you get invited to their house for dinner -- and to a houseful of people dying to see you?

See more home TV coverage and reviews of past episodes of "Selling New York."
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