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Luxury Outlook 2022

Superluxury Properties Break Records

Superluxury Properties Break Records

Call it pandemic purchasing or a change in priorities for high-end homeowners, but the US$30-million-plus home sale is a trend that shows no signs of slowing.

“The gains from the stock market have been so strong over the past decade,” says Jessica Canning, agent and luxury specialist, Sotheby’s International Realty–Carmel Rancho Brokerage. “Plus, a lot of people are evaluating what they want to do with their lives and how they want to spend what they’ve earned. Many are focusing on spending quality time in places that make them happy.”

Here, three agents share more about their US$30 million deals and what homeowners are looking for in high-end properties in these markets

PEBBLE BEACH, CALIFORNIA: ALL ABOUT THE VIEW

With only 26 oceanfront properties and 52 golf-front properties in the exclusive coastal community of Pebble Beach, that dynamic of fixed supply and increased demand (the ratio of buyers to sellers is currently 10 to 1) has been on full display in the US$30 million second-home market in this area, known for its gorgeous coastline and renowned golf courses.

In July 2021, a 10,000-square-foot residence with views of the Pebble Beach Golf Links and Carmel Beach sold for $32.7 million in a deal brokered by Sotheby’s International Realty - Carmel Rancho Brokerage. A record for California’s Monterey County.

During the dot-com boom 20 years ago, homes were selling in the US$20 million–to–US$22 million price range. Now, that price has been elevated to over US$30 million.

“With 30% of our buyers coming from the Bay Area, we tend to dovetail with what’s happening in that market,” Canning says of Silicon Valley, which is two hours away by car.

The biggest driver of value—and therefore price—of any home north of US$10 million is a house featuring a big kitchen and extensive square footage both inside and out, Canning says.

“Ultimately, buyers are seeking a home with the best conceivable view,” she says. “As well as the most luxurious amenities.”

DORADO BEACH, PUERTO RICO: TAX BENEFITS TO CONSIDER

For home buyers eager to live full time in Puerto Rico, the luxurious homes in the East Beach community within Dorado Beach are a huge draw.

In fact, a two-acre ocean property with a main house and a guest house sold for US$30 million last year, the highest ever for Puerto Rico, according to Oriana Juvelier, president of Puerto Rico Sotheby’s International Realty, who served as listing agent on the sale.

“Home buyers are seeking favorable tax situations,” she says. “They’re also seeking 13,000 to 15,000 air-conditioned square feet, and another 4,000 to 5,000 square feet of outdoor living, because our great weather enables us to be outside year-round, from sunup to sunset. That’s what you’ll get in the US$30 million range.”

And for the US$30 million home buyer, amenities abound, including wellness spaces for yoga, pilates, and cycling, and an at-home spa.

“Home buyers used to want a movie theater or bowling alley,” Juvelier says. “The new luxury buyer wants a full body-treatment space and at-home spa space with floor-to-ceiling windows facing a garden, backyard, or green space of some sort.”

Puerto Rico Sotheby’s International Realty

Most expensive home in Dorado Beach, Puerto Rico

Puerto Rico Sotheby’s International Realty

NEW YORK CITY: IT’S ABOUT SPACE—AND DESIGN

In the city that never sleeps, a US$60 million apartment home sold in 2021 was the most expensive co-op sale since 2015.

The triplex penthouse, located next to the Guggenheim Museum, was shown for one day only in May, says Nikki Field, senior global real estate advisor and associate broker, Sotheby’s International Realty–East Side Manhattan Brokerage, who handled the sale.

We queued up seven potential buyers, one after another, for that ‘one day only’ showing,” Field says. “The profiles were all similar: billionaires upgrading in New York that qualified for a socially elite building.”

After two days of competitive bidding, one candidate made an all-cash US$60-million offer.

“Ultraluxury buyers in New York are limited by nothing,” Field says. “Their goals are generally divided into two arenas: uptown or downtown, and ‘move-in ready’ or grand estate with prewar bones.”

In this highest of high-end markets, buyers are focused on views, thoughtful design, and curated amenities.

“All of this delivers the added value they require and that their money can pay for,” she says.

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