A Manhattan publicist claims to have been through a nightmarish experience renting her triplex apartment to an uptown doctor — who, according to court papers, did $250,000 of damage within days of getting the keys, changed the locks, made holes in the walls, tore down wallpaper, “threw out television sets [or] gave them away” and installed “an illegal hot tub.”
In a situation straight out of the Michael Keaton tenant-from-hell thriller “Pacific Heights,” Samantha Martin claims that she handed over the keys to her Upper West Side condo to Dr. Katie Novosel — and within days Novosel began wreaking havoc on the joint.
In a $1 million lawsuit filed in New York Supreme Court, Martin — the owner of a boutique lifestyle p.r. firm called Media Maison that has offices in Hong Kong and New York — claims that Novosel “broke, damaged or destroyed marble countertops, a lift system, patio furniture and a patio canopy, among other things, and wrecked an electrical panel by installing [an] ‘illegal hot tub.’ ”
Martin further claims in the lawsuit that Novosel removed wallpaper and “installed a massive wall fountain” and, oddly, a Murphy bed. The court documents also claim that the doctor “installed a LED fireplace on the premises which caught fire on two occasions.”
The papers call Novosel’s actions “outrageous” and said that they were “performed in spite, with malice or evil motive.”
According to a blog post she wrote for the website Cottages & Gardens, Martin started renting out the apartment — which is owned by her mother — after she was diagnosed with Lupus and moved upstate, where “the calm and peace would allow me to get better.”
An attorney for Novosel declined to comment, but suggested that Novosel was preparing to file a countersuit.
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