Have a spare $7.5 million laying around? That's US dollars mind you. In the housing market for a four bedroom, four and a half bathroom apartment with a step down library and a whole lot of history? Now, what if I told you it's Joan Didion's New York City home we're talking about, does that change things? Probably not, if you're a millennial or younger.
After a frenzied auction of the late author's estate, where items like Didion's Céline sunglasses sold for $27,000 and all the contents of the sale fetched more than $2 million (again, that's US dollars), the final chance to buy into the Didion mystique arrives with the sale of her New York City apartment, where she lived from 1988 until her passing in 2021.
The property, located at 33 East 70th Street and with another address on 71st, has just gone to market through Sotheby’s International Realty. We've never been a houseguest of Joan Didion's, but those 11 rooms are familiar to anyone who has read her work. Stories swirl around the space, which we imagine is part of the appeal for whoever comes to own it. Will they be willing to cough up for it though? After all, there seems to be a premium on the place, where only a few floors down a three bedroom apartment is listed at $4.5 million.
So the apartment, let's get into it. There's stretches of pale blue bookshelves, a wet bar, herringbone floors throughout and, perhaps most tragically, the kitchen with its terracotta hexagonal tiled flooring and professional grade stove that becomes the opening setting for The Year of Magical Thinking. In the years after John Gregory Dunne's death, it's from within these four walls that Joan Didion would go on to publish four more books and star in a documentary about herself. That's a lot of life lived, now it's someone else's turn.