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Kareem Abdul-Jabbar shares what made Wilt Chamberlain's apartment in New York the 'ultimate bachelor pad'

Wilt Chamberlain and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar

Kareem Abdul Jabbar remembers when he visited Wilt Chamberlain's apartment, which he describes as the ultimate bachelor pad

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar remembers when he visited Wilt Chamberlain's apartment, which he describes as the ultimate bachelor pad that looked like something he had never seen before.

The ultimate bachelor pad

We've already touched upon Wilt Chamberlain's lavish lifestyle throughout his life, showcasing he was a very talented and interesting individual. When he moved to LA to play for the Lakers, his Bel Air mansion was one of the most notorious places because of the specific architectural style, and the parties with a bunch of women Wilt organized regularly.

His Bel Air mansion was on a totally different level and therefore well known with a particular reputation that made it even more unique. On the other hand, earlier in his career, when Wilt was still living in New York, he was maybe even having more fun since he was running a nightclub and had an apartment that was so luxurious it left a permanent impression on a young Kareem Abdul-Jabbar.

In his book "Becoming Kareem", he talks about Wilt's mentorship early on in his life by allowing him to see what awaits him if he becomes a professional NBA player. During one of those times when Kareem spent time with Wilt, he took him to see his apartment on Central Park West.

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"One day, we were in Smalls when Wilt decided we should go to his apartment to play cards. We all piled into his limo and drove to his home in the ritzy Park West Village complex on Central Park West."

Kareem describes Wilt's apartment as an ultimate bachelor pad, extravagant in every possible way with the best possible furniture, decoration, and overall style.

"Wilt's apartment was the ultimate bachelor pad, with an antique gold finish on everything in sight. The walls were decorated with real paintings, not just cheap copies from Woolworth's as most people I knew had. His stereo system was the latest in high-tech, surrounded by a large record collection with some of the same jazz albums I owned. Only more. Much, much more. Wilt had a reputation for extravagance, but this was all beyond even my imagination. This was where Frank Sinatra or Dean Martin might live in one of their rollicking movies about chasing girls."

Learning from Wilt about life

Visiting Wilt's apartment and spending more time with someone who had so much money and success opened Kareem's eyes and the possibilities that could soon become a reality in his life as well. Since that happened in the mid-'60s, when times were much different than now, Kareem as a young teenager, needed to see a successful black man around him to show him the ropes. That is something that was of utmost importance to Kareem at the time.

"For the first time, I had a coach who was teaching me the possibilities of a successful black man's lifestyle. If this was the lifestyle I had in store for me, then bring it on!"

There is no question Wilt knew how to live a good life. He was successful, wealthy, charismatic, and had a great personality that made people around him want to spend more time with him. Kareem witnessed it firsthand when he recalled why all the women genuinely liked Wilt and being in his company. Wilt was larger than life and had a lifestyle most people can only dream of, and this story about his fancy New York apartment is just one example of that.

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