Big Ticket Redux

03TICKET-master675-v2A column runs every Sunday in the New York Times Real Estate section called “Big Ticket” which highlights the previous week’s highest price residential real estate transaction. More often than not, it seems the most expensive properties moving lately are condos in One57 – a 90 story building designed by Pritzker-Prize winning architect Christian De Portzamparc situated at 157 West 57th Street in Manhattan, which according to the website “redefines luxury living in New York City, rising above it all.”

In reality, it’s a place where billionaires, foreign and domestic, can anonymously park millions at low tax rates that were granted by New York City to the developers, Extell Development Company. In fact, according to The Real Deal, an outlet covering the NY real estate scene, the residents of One57 are getting a whopping 94 percent discount off the normally-applied taxes for such properties. Rising above it all, indeed.

Anyway, the point of this blog is not to harp on income inequality, or berate indefensible favoritism toward minorities (i.e. billionaires), but rather to express pity for poor Vivian Marino who has to bang out insipid copy each week for “Big Ticket.” Seriously, how do you write exciting, scintillating and original copy describing every other week the sale of the same damn thing (albeit obscenely expensive)?

Give “Big Ticket” writer Marino credit for mining Roget’s Thesaurus for new and different adjectives: the building is “sky-piercing,” “vitreous,” “blue-glass,” glassy blue,” and a “glass-sheathed Midtown statement-maker” ; the vistas are “nonpareil,” “panoramic,” and “unparalleled”; the buyers are “demigods.”

This exercise in repetition is destined to go on for several more months until all the condos are sold, and then for a few years after when the demigods are through flipping their tax-payer subsidized investments.

Feast your eyes on a sampling from the past six months.

May 3 – A sprawling aerie on the 53rd floor of One57, the sky-piercing condominium that has attracted demigods of international business and finance, sold to a mystery buyer, one seemingly versed in the teachings of a much higher power, for $30,683,372.50 and was the most expensive closed sale of the week, according to city records.
The monthly charges for the 5,475-square-foot sponsor unit, No. 53B, which was combined early on with 53C for a total of five bedrooms and five and a half bathrooms, are $10,408.

April 17 – The “Winter Garden” duplex penthouse at One57, Extell Development’s vitreous skyscraper, which has attracted a bevy of billionaire buyers since sales began in 2011, sold for $91,541,053 to a group led by the hedge fund mogul William A. Ackman. It was the second highest price ever paid for a single residence in New York City and the most expensive closed sale of the week, according to city records.

April 10- A full-floor aerie near the apex of the Extell Development Company’s blue-glass bastion of billionaires, One57, which offers nonpareil park, water and cityscape vistas, sold for $47,367,491.39 and was the most expensive sale of the week, according to city records.

March 6 – A three-bedroom three-and-a-half-bath apartment on the 65th floor of One57, the glassy-blue skyscraper where the priciest transaction for a single residence in New York City recently took place, sold for $29,329,100 and was the most expensive closed sale of the week, according to city records.

February 13 – A floor-through aerie near the pinnacle of One57, the blue-glass 90-story skyscraper designed by Atelier Christian de Portzamparc, with stunning park, water and cityscape vistas, sold for $47,366,989.64 to a buyer used to being “very high above the clouds” and was the most expensive sale of the week, according to city records.
Monthly carrying costs for the 6,236-square-foot apartment at 157 West 57th Street, No. 86, are $12,530 and include a tax abatement obtained by the sponsor, the Extell Development Company.

January 23 – A duplex penthouse at the pinnacle of One57, the vitreous skyscraper with nonpareil vistas of Central Park, the Hudson and East Rivers and almost every landmark on the horizon, sold for $100,471,452.77 to a mystery buyer, shattering the record for the highest price ever paid for a single residence in New York City, and was the most expensive sale of the week, according to city records.

January 2 – A full-floor apartment on the 84th floor of the glass-sheathed One57 tower, with panoramic water, park and city vistas, sold for $52,952,500 and was the most expensive sale of the week, according to city records.
Monthly carrying costs for the residence, No. 84, which has 6,240 square feet of space that includes four bedrooms, a sitting room and five and a half baths, are $12,375. The original asking price was $45.5 million.

December 12 – Another full-floor residence at One57, the 90-story Midtown tower from the Extell Development Company that promises unparalleled vistas of Central Park, the Hudson and East Rivers, and nearly every New York City landmark on the horizon, traded at $55,498,125 and was the most expensive sale of the week, according to city records.

November 28
– The allure of an entire floor with bird’s-eye views near the top of One57, the Extell Development Company’s glass-sheathed Midtown statement-maker at 157 West 57th Street, continued to persuade buyers to invest upward of $50 million in personal aeries there, as No. 80 traded for $52,952,500 and was the most expensive sale of the week, according to city records.

October 17 - A glass-sheathed three-bedroom condominium with vistas in four directions, including 60 feet of direct views of Central Park, One 57, the Extell Development Company’s 90-story Midtown tower at 157 West 57th Street, sold for $34 million and was the most expensive sale of the week, according to city records. The listing price was $36 million. The residence, No. 58A, holds the distinction of being the first apartment in the 94-unit skyscraper to be flipped.

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