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Daddy’s little princess?

January 17, 2012

Ekaterina Rybolovleva is one lucky girl. Called a Russian princess by some, Ekaterina’s dad recently bought her an apartment on the Upper West Side of Manhattan for the bargain basement price of $88 million. But not just any apartment.

It’s the most expensive one in the history of the Big Apple.

Sure it’s 6,744 sq ft, has ten rooms, 6.5 bathrooms, super high ceilings, a wraparound porch accessible from 19 glass doors, an oval master bedroom designed for unobstructed views of the sunrise, and overlooks Central Park through sprawling walls of windows. But I wonder, while her apartment is 13.5 times larger than my new one bedroom and costs more than 350 times what mine does, will Ekaterina’s father come visit her and sleep on her couch? Will he help her decide where to hang her pictures? How to organize the furniture? Will he give her his two-cents in choosing colors for the bedroom? Take her food shopping at Fairway market and fill up her fridge with soymilk, apples and yogurt? Will he make her scrambled eggs in her kitchen or go with her for walks in Central Park? Do you think he’ll take her to eat vegetable dumplings at Land or popovers at The Popover Cafe? Will he rest his hand on her shoulder as they walk around art galleries in Chelsea? Will he explain the history of the city’s buildings and describe the type of architecture as they walk along the streets? Will he hug her for no apparent reason when they stop along the Highline to admire the views? And will he tell her bad jokes?

Maybe. Maybe Ekaterina will get these other things from her father aside from loads of money, and if she does, I’m sure she’ll agree they’re worth much more than a multi-million dollar abode. And while her father is successful at running his fertilizer empire, to me, there’s something about giving a 22-year-old such a lavish home that just smells funny to me.

p.s. I was accepted by my new co-op board and will be moving soon. They like me! They really like me!


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  1. anne asher permalink


    I knew they would.


  2. Very good comments, Felice. I saw that article and shared many of your same thoughts. Really, the whole thing disgusted me.

  3. Great post. I agree. I’d rather have a dad that did all these things, then just one who bought me a huge apt….

  4. Nice to hear about you and your dad. Hope you’re still riding bikes together.

  5. Gillian duCharme permalink

    Felice – You have hit it on the button! She will be lost inside the apt, may never find
    her way out! And does her father know enough about NYC to guide her anyway?

    Best regards,

  6. Of course they like you. You are very likeable. Very. And not just because you can still recite the periodic table but because you are you.

  7. marcia boland-wells permalink

    No one is lucckier than us Cohen girls who have had the BEST father’s in the world. I know exactly where he learned it. Love the article, good luck on the move.

  8. Sad how many there are out there who don’t get it. It’s not about the things we own but aout the lives we touch, and those who touch us. I’m adding space to my own house but mainly so that I can welcome more friends and family into it(….by the time there are kids, grand kids and great grands, I need a bit more) and so that everything I need will be on one floor and I can stay here til I’m wicked old…

    What I remember of my dad is the things he did with me, the authors and thinkers he admired, and the wisdom he shared. His introduction to Bertrand Russell when I was 13…..Priceless.

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