By Gersh Kuntzman The Brooklyn Paper
The Hotel Bossert, the swanky Montague Street accommodation that was the site of the Dodgers’ knock-down, drag-out World Series victory party in 1955 and, more recently, a Jehovah’s Witnesses dormitory, has apparently been sold.
Then again, no one’s talking.
Brownstoner.com, a real-estate Web site, reported that developer Robert A. Levine had bought the 224-unit hotel from the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society for “upwards of $100 million.”
But both entities denied the report.
“It’s not true,” Witness spokesman Richard Devine told The Brooklyn Paper. “The hotel has not yet been sold.”
Repeated calls to Levine’s RAL Companies and Affiliates were not returned.
If Levine has indeed bought the Bossert, it would mark the second high-profile deal between his company and the Witnesses. In 2004, Levine bought the Watchtower’s former printing plant at 360 Furman St. for a reported $200 million. The building is now being converted into the all-luxury One Brooklyn Bridge Park.
The sale of the Bossert— and the attendant buzz that it has created — couldn’t have come at a better time. After all, the 14-story Italian Renaissance Revival building at the corner of Montague and Hicks streets is the headline attraction on Saturday’s Brooklyn Heights house tour.
The public will get a rare look inside the Bossert’s ornate lobby, which was restored to its glory by the Witnesses. (See GO Brooklyn’s house tour roundup on page 12.)
The building is also known for the former Marine Roof restaurant on the top floor — a room with views of Manhattan that will not be on the house tour, but will figure prominently in any buyer’s plans for the building.
The Bossert is just one of a half-dozen Witness buildings for sale in Downtown Brooklyn, DUMBO and Brooklyn Heights, where the century-old faith is based. The selloff comes as the Witnesses have moved most of their publishing and printing operations upstate.
Last year, the Standish Arms Hotel on Columbia Heights sold for $50 million. At the time, real-estate experts said the Bossert would go for twice that amount.
They were right. Apparently, that is.