A five-story penthouse at the Aman New York on Fifth Avenue, across the street from Trump Tower, has sold for $135 million, a spokesperson for Aman told The Post. It’s the Big Apple’s most expensive sale of the year — significantly surpassing a $115 million penthouse duplex sale at Central Park Tower in June. 

The massive 12,536-square-foot mansion in the sky — sold as a “white box,” or raw space — takes up floors 22 through 26 of the landmarked Beaux-Arts Crown Building at 730 Fifth Ave. Built in 1922, the Crown Building now houses an 83-room hotel, with 22 luxury residences on floors 15 through 30. 

The sale was first reported by Bloomberg

The landmarked Crown Building dates to 1922. OKO Group

The grand aerie was rumored to have found a buyer in 2018 when it was asking $180 million. But that deal never happened. The residence comes with wide views of Central Park and reportedly includes a piano lounge, a wrap terrace, a private elevator and two pools — one indoor and one outdoor.

The picture-perfect Aman was developed by the OKO Group, a US development firm founded by Vlad Doronin, Aman’s CEO and chairman and the former boyfriend of American supermodel Naomi Campbell. Doronin’s current partner is Kristina Romanova.

The Soviet-born billionaire is a real estate aficionado, who once hired the late starchitect Zaha Hadid to design a $140 million futuristic spaceship style residence, called “the Spaceship House,” in the middle of the Barvikha Forest outside Moscow.

It was the only private home that Hadid ever designed in her lifetime, and it includes an underground nightclub and a main bedroom suite perched 100 feet in the sky “above the trees,” according to reports. Hadid called Doronin, who was trained in martial arts, the “Russian James Bond.” 

The Beaux-Arts beauty currently houses the five-story Aman New York penthouse. OKO Group

Doronin got his start in the late 1980s when he left the Soviet Union to work in Switzerland for the late Marc Rich, a Belgian-born American tax fugitive and commodities trader.

At the time, KGB officials — aware that their centrally planned economy was failing — were setting up Western front companies to siphon Soviet assets out of the crumbling empire. The Western companies were granted invaluable permission to buy Soviet commodities for artificially low prices, sell them at market rates internationally and make a killing. 

Shortly before the Soviet Union collapsed, Doronin returned to Moscow in 1991, where — financed by Rich — he continued to trade in Soviet oil and metals and then added real estate to his portfolio, which by now includes properties in New York, Miami and Aspen. Rich — who has been credited with helping to create Russia’s original oligarch class — was infamously pardoned by Pres. Bill Clinton his last day in office; Rich died in Switzerland in 2013. Three years later, in an interview with Forbes Russia, Doronin said: “When I worked in [Rich’s] company, I brought in a good income. He helped me with advice, contacts, helped me become who I am now, taught me business.”

The pool inside Aman New York’s spa. OKO Group
The world-class Aman New York. Robert Rieger

The Aman New York has quite the history. Doronin bought the top 20 floors of the Crown Building in 2015 for around $500 million with Michael Shvo, who pled guilty to tax fraud in 2018 and relinquished his position as co-developer.

Doronin had also gone to war with his now-former Aman partner, Omar Amanat — they co-bought the brand for $358 million in 2014 — and with the Aman brand founder, Adrian Zecha, an Indonesian national.

The pandemic delayed the hotel’s opening in New York. In 2021, a worker died on the property, falling through an “improperly installed chute,” according to reports. 

Last year, Aman’s global head of security, retired FBI agent Charles McGonigal, was indicted for money laundering and violating US sanctions law. While at the FBI, McGonigal worked as head of counterintelligence at the agency’s New York field office, where he supervised the investigations of oligarchs including Oleg Deripaska.

McGonigal also played a key role in the federal investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election. After retiring from the FBI, McGonigal allegedly worked for Deripaska, the very same oligarch he had previously investigated.

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