Joan Rivers’ ‘haunted’ NYC penthouse for sale for $38M

Rivers lived in the penthouse for 28 years

The palatial triplex Upper East Side penthouse that was home to the legendary Joan Rivers for more than a quarter of a century is going up for sale for $38 million.

The apartment — where Rivers carved out her caustic comedy, entertained celebrities including Princess Diana and where Rivers said she encountered a belligerent ghost — is steps from 5th Ave on 62nd Street with views of Central Park and New York City.

The spectacular terraced triplex penthouse, where Rivers lived for 28 years, is perched atop a private 42-foot wide and limestone-sheathed mansion and was designed by renowned architect Horace Trumbauer in the neo-French Classic style. 

It was sold after Rivers’ death in 2014 for $28 million to an unnamed member of a Middle Eastern Royal Family, who is now putting it back on the market, we’re told.

The 11-room apartment, which features four bedrooms and four and a half baths and five wood-burning fireplaces encompasses 1,190 square feet with two terraces offering another 430 square feet, offering views of the park and the city.

NEW YORK - APRIL 27: Joan Rivers from the film "Joan Rivers - A Piece of Work" attends the Tribeca Film Festival 2010 portrait studio at the FilmMaker Industry Press Center on April 27, 2010 in New York, New York. (Photo by Larry Busacca/Getty Images


Described as one of the few remaining examples of architect Trumbauer’s "great houses in New York," a private elevator entry hall leads to a dramatic two-story gallery which adjoins a light-flooded living room, each with a wood-burning fireplace. 

The reception rooms feature soaring 23’ ceilings and elegant parquet-de-Versailles flooring.  A spacious corner paneled library and a formal dining room feature ornate 18th century French panels, both with original wood burning fireplaces and overlooking a south-facing terrace.

Upstairs, a sumptuous corner master bedroom suite overlooks another south-facing terrace. Downstairs, an expansive corner sitting room with a wood-burning fireplace adjoins two additional bedrooms, each with an en-suite bathroom.

Rivers bought the apartment in 1988, a year after the death of her husband Edgar Rosenberg. She served as president of the condominium board, but reportedly jokingly referred to herself as the "scary lady upstairs."

In a 2012 interview, she described the residence’s lavish decor as "Louis XIV meets Fred and Ginger," perhaps alluding to the property’s massive ballroom where she gave lavish parties.

In a 2009 episode of "Celebrity Ghost Stories," Rivers said she bought in a voodoo priestess after she moved in to help her move out a difficult ghost she called "Mrs. Spencer," who she said was a former resident. Mrs. Spencer was said to be the niece of financier J.P Morgan, possibly Mrs. Alfred Nicols Spencer.


Rivers said in the Amazon Prime show that neighbors had seen apparitions dancing in the ballroom and descending the grand staircase in evening attire. Rivers said she found an old portrait of Mrs. Spencer and hung it in the lobby, and the haunting stopped. 

The property will be exclusively marketed by Jenny Lenz and Dolly Lenz Real Estate. 

This story first appeared in the New York Post.