The high-end real estate market has been surging around the world, including right here as more buyers purchase Los Angeles luxury homes. But developers say they’re setting their sights on New York City, despite continuing to work on projects around the globe. Yigal Zemah, the founder of Berggruen Residential, which is building a 42-story condominium in Tel Aviv, said: “We have put our aims on New York because this is where a lot of potential buyers are.”
Zemah’s project known as Meier-on-Rothschild is one of Israel’s most expensive luxury real estate developments to-date, and includes a 15,000-square-foot penthouse with a price tag of almost $50 million. The 42-story luxury condo building is located in Tel Aviv and was designed by award-winning architect Richard Meier. But while the brick and mortar of this building may be thousands of miles and an ocean away, Zemah says their marketing efforts are squarely rooted in the Big Apple.
And Zemah isn’t the only one employing this tactic. According to the New York State Attorney General, 13 plans have been filed in New York this year for projects being built out-of-state. That’s more than two times the number last year, but still well below the number filed during the height of the real estate bubble.
Part of it has to do with the rising prices for New York City luxury real estate. Here, it’s common to find condos priced at nearly $100 million, like you would find in places like London. Up until recently, developers have focused on ultra-wealthy markets like China, Russia and the Middle East, but with the influx of cash in New York, it only makes sense to focus on this market.
Royce Pinkwater of Pinkwater select specializes in super-luxury projects in New York and around the world. He said: “Global developers are not scared of New York. New Yorkers are not only among the most global residents in the world, but the increase of wealth here has made it very attractive.”
Projects that are currently capturing the attention of New Yorkers include 5 Princes Gate in London, 18 Nouvel in Singapore, and others in Miami and the Caribbean. New Yorkers have long been fans of the British Virgin Islands, where prices range from about $3 million to as high as $50 million. Oil Nut Bay is one such development.
David V. Johnson, the founder of the Victor International Corporation who developed Oil Nut Bay, adds: “New York kind of dropped off the radar for a few years after the collapse of the financial sector. But it is certainly back now. Marketing to New York is a heavy focus of ours.”
Zemah and other developers point out that marketing in New York is not for the financially faint of heart. He has already spent about $100,000 in legal fees for the privilege. He went on to say: “Only serious developers who have major projects can really afford to do business in New York City.”
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(all data current as of 10/22/2017)
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