The asking price for the Steinway Mansion has dropped at least $1 million, but the friends’ group of the Astoria landmark isn’t pleased with what the decrease means.
Michele Kazarian, the executor of the property, has offered the home and three of the property’s seven plots to interested parties for $1.9 million.
The Friends of Steinway Mansion, which formed in late-February and seeks to purchase the property to be turned into a museum, doesn’t want the land split up.
“We want to buy the entire parcel of land,” Bob Singleton, executive director of the Greater Astoria Historical Society and founder of the friends group, said. “We will discuss this with Michele.”
Going forward they will be working with Kazarian to host a fundraiser at the mansion, Singleton said. The main goals of the effort will be to raise money to purchase the full property, to earmark money for heating bills and taxes, and thirdly, to pay for a full restoration, which will be “pricey,” Singleton said.
Restoration to its original state would cost $500 to $1 million, according to Paul Halvatzis, associate broker at Amorelli Realty. The light-industrial zoned complete property has been listed with the Astoria firm for the last month at $3.2 million.
"There has been a lot more interest since the price dropped on just the mansion portion of the property," Halvatzis said. "The reality is that we would like to have a group come in and restore the mansion. Someone who really loves the property."
Other expenses for the Friends of Steinway Mansion are buying a domain name and maintaining a bank account, Singleton added. For now all fundraising efforts are conducted by volunteers, not paid workers, he said.
William Steinway, the first president of Steinway & Sons, bought the mansion in the 1870s. After his death, the house was eventually sold to the Halberian family.
The 27-room house, located at 18-33 41 St., has been listed several times since 2010, when its former owner, the late Michael Halberian, Kazarian’s father, put it on the market.
Kazarian did not respond to emails by press time.
The GAHS will host a lecture on May 6 updating the community on the progress of the group and condition of the house.