Chances are, Dominique Strauss-Kahn had a way better Wednesday night than you did. The disgraced former IMF chief moved from his downtown digs to an enviable 6,800-square-foot, $14 million pad in Tribeca to wait out his trial for sexual assault and attempted rape in “townhouse arrest.” Consider it the Stateside version of Julian Assange’s ten-bedroom, eighteenth-century “manor arrest” in the English countryside. For dinner, Strauss-Kahn and his wife, heiress Anne Sinclair, who is footing the bill, ordered $242.79 worth of steaks and salad from Landmarc, an upscale restaurant around the corner. The $50,000-a-month three-story townhouse at 153 Franklin Street also boasts a movie theater, antique French oak floors, a gym, and a terrace. Not to mention radiant-heated limestone on the ground floor and a “rainfall steam shower” in the bathroom, befitting the Socialist Party member critics call part of the “Caviar Left.” In fact, luxe amenities were enough to catch A-Rod and Cameron Diaz’s eyes during a recent house-hunting excursion.
Somehow the super-secret location of his new digs did not get past the gaggle of reporters who’ve been camping outside his temporary residence at 71 Broadway. Unhandcuffed, Strauss-Kahn offered a “wry smirk” to onlookers. But once he arrived at Franklin Street, his smile turned to a sneer as a female passerby shouted “Pig” as he and his security detail walked by.
If you’re looking for some real estate schadenfreude while the world awaits Strauss-Kahn’s trial, consider that the Hot Rabbit hasn’t been able to call anyplace home for long. He was rejected by the co-op board at the Bristol, wore out his welcome at 71 Broadway, and the Tribeca natives are already restless. Rolling her eyes, Annette Goodman, Strauss-Kahn’s new neighbor, told the New York Daily News, “It’s the height of hypocrisy. House arrest does not mean a luxury townhouse.” Another neighbor, Linda Buongermino, offered up a prayer in protest, “Please, God, no.”
Update: Mogulite, Dan Abrams’s new website, has more details on Strauss-Kahn’s townhouse, owing to the fortuitous coincidence of hosting their launch party at 153 Franklin last week. In addition to the “bar and screening room” in the basement, which features Swarovski-studded “paintings” of The Godfather and Scarface, Mogulite says it also happens to be “tailor-made for someone under house arrest” due to the fact that all the rooms are hidden.