Manhattan’s luxury real estate market is setting records. Here’s what $50 million can buy

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Pent-up demand, a roaring stock market and extremely low interest rates are melding together to create a record-breaking luxury real estate market in Manhattan.

“Leading up to the pandemic, the high end of the market was the weakest segment of the market. However, since the end of the lockdown, it’s inverted – where the weakest segment of the market is the lower end, entry level,” said Jonathan Miller, president and CEO of real estate appraisal firm Miller Samuel.

The third quarter saw the most sales recorded at all price points in Manhattan in more than 32 years, according to a recent report by Douglas Elliman. But the real heat is on properties priced above $4 million.

“2021 has recorded the largest number of luxury contracts in the history of New York real estate,” said Donna Olshan, president of Olshan Realty and author of the Olshan Luxury Report.

According to Olshan, so far this year in Manhattan, 1,623 contracts were signed for deals with asking prices of $4 million or more — totaling about $14 billion in value. And the year isn’t over yet.

With weeks to go, the previous records for the number of deals and their value have been smashed already. In 2013, 1,372 contracts were signed, but the prior record value was set in 2014, with a total $11.26 billion in sales.

As for trophy properties — single-family residences worth north of $50 million — eight sales have closed so far this year, Miller said. That’s on par with the pacing in 2019. This year’s buyers include one that spent $157.7 million on two adjacent apartments at 220 Central Park South.

The 220 Central Park South building, center, stands in New York, on Jan. 23, 2019. Just days after buying one of the most expensive residential properties in London, Citadel founder Ken Griffin set a U.S. record with the $238 million penthouse at 220 Central Park South.

Jeenah Moon | Bloomberg | Getty Images

With the lifting of the international travel ban on about 33 countries for vaccinated visitors, Miller expects there could be a wave of deals ahead, as well-heeled foreigners return and create even more demand for luxury real estate in New York City.

In such a strong luxury market, what can someone buy with $50 million or more? CNBC rounded up a few examples. Take a peek inside.

A Central Park duplex penthouse

A ‘compound in the sky’

Originally listed for $59 million in January 2020, the 10,171-square-foot penthouse, which takes up the entire 90th floor of 35 Hudson Yards, is now listed at $54.5 million.

The mega-listing has five bedrooms, six-and-a-half baths, plus a dining room, lounge, media room, home gym and library.

Dining room

Related / Colin Miller

It also has the highest residential terrace currently on the market, according to the developer. 

Terrace

Related / Colin Miller

The great room alone is more than 1,500 square feet with 360-degree vistas of the city.

The penthouse has 360-degree views of the Manhattan skyline.

Related / Colin Miller

“The absolutely dazzling views overlook all of downtown Manhattan and the Freedom Tower, the Statue of Liberty, all of the bridges along the East River and, on a clear day – even the Atlantic Ocean,” said Sherry Tobak, senior vice president of Related Companies, the property’s developer.

The home’s interiors are by AD100 designer Tony Ingrao and include 14-foot ceilings, French oak floors, and a kitchen with an opal white marble island, counter and backsplash, according to its listing.

Kitchen

Related / Colin Miller

The corner master bedroom includes a dressing room, wet bar, and two bathroom suites covered in iceberg quartzite.

Master bedroom

Related / Colin Miller

The additional bedrooms are all en-suite. There’s also a fitness room, media room and an onyx-clad powder room.

According to the listing, maintenance and common charges are $33,555 a month, in addition to monthly taxes of $2,338.

A palatial townhouse



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