Biglaw, Fabulosity, General Counsel, In-House Counsel, Lawyerly Lairs, Money, Partner Issues, Real Estate, Wall Street

Lawyerly Lairs: Partners Part With Pricey Penthouse

Just outside the window: marble statues of Roman goddesses.

Once upon a time, there lived a beautiful Swedish woman. She came to the United States and studied at an elite college and top law school. After graduation, she went to work at Davis Polk — which is where all the beautiful people work.

While at Davis Polk, this blonde beauty met her Prince Charming — an older, extremely successful M&A partner. They got married at a Caribbean resort, and their wedding made the pages of the New York Times (of course). A few years later, she left the firm to become the general counsel to a global investment bank. Unlike many other power couples, they remain married to this day.

Fairy tales can come true. Let’s learn about a remarkable couple, then ogle their castle in the clouds….

Ulrika Ekman

Meet Ulrika Ekman. Given her name and the fact that her parents are from Sweden, I’m going to hazard a guess that she’s of Swedish ancestry. After graduating from Georgetown in 1985 and from NYU Law School in 1990, she joined Davis Polk, where she eventually made partner.

Somewhere along the way, she met Peter R. Douglas, a 1975 Harvard Law grad, Davis Polk partner, and prominent M&A lawyer known for inventing the “pac-man” takeover defense. Ulrika Ekman becamse Ms. Pac-Man in January 2000, as gloriously recorded in the pages of the New York Times.

Peter Douglas

In 2004, Ekman left Davis Polk to become the general counsel of Greenhill & Co., a leading investment bank. As you’d expect from the GC of an i-bank, she earned seven figures. She served in that role for more than eight years, until 2012. (It’s not clear why she left; she was replaced as GC by Gavin Solotar, who left the Wachtell Lipton partnership for the job.)

Douglas and Ekman bought a home together — and oh what a home! It’s a four-bedroom duplex penthouse, covering more than 4,000 square feet, at 542 Broadway in Soho. It’s located just a few blocks away from the Above the Law offices, so I strolled down there yesterday and took some pictures (click to enlarge):

Despite some nice architectural details, such as the marble statues shown at the top of this post, the building facade is far from fabulous. But the interior of the apartment more than makes up for it….

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