Boston Luxury Real Estate: Rising Boston Prices Attracting International Investors

The super luxury market in Boston has risen to one of its highest points since the boom seen in 2004 and 2005. The level of sales in Boston have reached sales near some of the most elite cities globally such as Geneva, Paris and Hong Kong. Sales of high-end condos at $1,000 per square foot, or close to $1 million and above, have increased rapidly compared to last year at a rate of 30 percent.

So far this year there have been 38 condo sales over $1,500 per square foot compared to a low of 14 sales two years ago. On a list that was made public in 2012 of the most expensive condo markets globally, this price was roughly the median price of all luxury properties in Beijing who came in 11th throughout the world. Some sales are reaching well over this said to be median price here in Boston with a unit at the Four Seasons taking in close to $3,000 per square foot as well as a unit on Commonwealth Avenue going for more than $2,700 per square foot.

A recent boom in new condo construction featuring many Manhattan-style luxury towers in the downtown Boston area has been lessening the price gap with these elite cities. There has been talk about the planning of the 60-story Christian Science condo tower charging $3,000-$4,000 per square foot. Then in Downtown Crossing we have the developers of the new Millennium Tower raving about the towers 60th-floor penthouse on sale for $37.5 million. This price is approximately three times higher than any condo that has been ever sold in Boston.

With the recent rise of condo prices, Boston is currently on track to be in the top 10 or 12 most expensive condo markets in the world by 2020.

Some native New Englanders may think that these downtown Boston condo prices are a bit far-fetched, but have really opened the eyes of international investors as deals to them can certainly be had here. In these elite cities- London for example- we have seen $4,000 per square foot condominium sales. Meanwhile in Hong Kong, a 275-square-foot condo, the same size of some ‘less expensive micro-units’ being pitched to young entrepreneurs in Boston, sold for an outstanding $772,000.

The recent surge of these luxury condos has really been catching and keeping the attention of international investors. While most of the buyers in Boston’s downtown condos have been said to be wealthy locals, in the Theater District’s W Boston tower foreign buyers are occupying about a quarter of the units. Moreover, there has been no secret that Asian buyers, Chinese specifically, are on the rise in the Hub as well. With the new direct connection flights from Logan to various locations in the world, the number of these international buyers is guaranteed to grow in the years to come.

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Gibson Sotheby’s International Realty Supports the Food & Fund Drive

As the holiday season is upon us, it is important to remember those less fortunate than us and in need of our help.

Gibson Sotheby’s International Realty will be sponsoring a local Food & Fund Drive during/from today, Thursday, November 20th through Saturday, January 3rd, where you can drop off canned foods and other non-perishable food items to be donated to the Greater Boston Food Bank (GBFB).

The GBFB works in nine counties of eastern Massachusetts, encompassing 190 cities and towns all while helping thousands with donations from people just like you.

Donations will be accepted at the following Gibson Sotheby’s International Realty offices;

- 119 Savin Hill Avenue in Dorchester

- 556 Tremont Street in Boston’s South End

- 277 Dartmouth Street Suite #2 in Boston’s Back Bay

Cash donations are also appreciated and accepted via their donor website which can be seen below. Monetary donations provide an even greater impact as every dollar donated allows for GBFB to purchase and distribute and incredible $5.94 worth of highly nutritious food, and every $20 donated will provide 5 Thanksgiving meals for families around the commonwealth.

We at Gibson Sotheby’s International Realty would like to thank all of you who will be getting involved in our joint efforts to help those in need during this holiday season.

More Information: Donation Page for Gibson Sotheby’s International Realty

Back Bay Luxury Real Estate: Mandarin Oriental to convert 25 units to Luxury Condos

boylston_776_ copyThe Mandarin Oriental complex, a 14-story property that sets a standard of luxury in Boston, is set to convert twenty-five of their apartments into luxury condominiums. The owners of the Back Bay complex are ending their leases with the current residents and the one-and-two-bedroom units are predicted to take in some of the highest prices the condo sales market has seen!

Currently, the number of luxury condos available for sale in the Back Bay area is at a low of 30. This extreme imbalance between supply and demand has been driving prices to record levels in Boston. This year, units in the city have been selling in record time for prices rarely seen in the past. Six units have sold for more than $2,000 per square foot and another 3,500 square foot unit sold for more than $10 million at roughly $2,900 a square foot.

In the last three years, Boston’s population has increased by more than 30,000 people totaling approximately 650,000. Unfortunately due to the economic downturn between 2007 and 2010, construction of new condos froze. However, today’s market is seeing a great deal of new condominiums being built with many sellers also now more willing to test the market. With this, these new luxury units at Mandarin Oriental could not arise at a better time as they add inventory to a market that is very strong in demand.

The 25 units that are set to go on sale in January range from 930-square foot one-bedrooms to two-bedrooms with 1,625 square feet. The asking price of each unit has not yet been determined but in the past year units at the building have sold for $3.7 million up to $12 million.  All buyers will have the luxury of using the Mandarin’s amenities including the spa, fitness center, and 24-hour concierge service.

Our very own chief executive and co-owner here at Gibson Sotheby’s International Realty, Larry Rideout, stated, “It’s really amazing to watch. We’re starting to get almost a Manhattan feel with some of our real estate.”

The remaining 10 apartments that were developed to fulfill the city’s inclusionary zoning policy will remain as affordable apartments. These units rent between $1,400 and $2,000 a month.

Mandarin Oriental remains at the center of attention that once challenged the city’s traditional expressions of wealth when it was first completed in 2008. It really is joining a surging market as it converts apartments to luxury condos which will immediately be satisfied by the large pool of qualified buyers. There are plans for major competition to be built in the years ahead in Downtown Crossing, Back Bay, on the South Boston waterfront, and beyond as more developers try to hurry and build while the economy and buyer demand remain with such a positive outlook.

More Information: Boston Globe

East Boston Real Estate: The Portside at East Pier Development Opens

XSTU4514.JPGWith a ribbon-cutting event, the 176-unit first phase of East Boston’s only luxury apartments are officially open! Located at 50 Lewis Street on East Boston’s waterfront, these new apartments are everything one could ask for.

Extensive planning for Portside at East Pier began in 1997 while construction began in 2006. Progress was soon after paused due to the market decline, to be picked back up in 2012 after Massport restructured the ground lease. The plan of this luxury apartment complex includes seven buildings over a 13-acre Massport-owned waterfront property. When complete, the number of apartments will total 550, along with 17,000 square feet of retail space.

President of Roseland Properties, Marshall Tycher, who is the developer based out New Jersey stated, “We’ve been through a few recessions and a rigorous process with the community. But now we’ve opened in Boston during a boom time with a project that’s the epitome of urban regentrification.”

Portside couldn’t be in a more pristine location. Some conveniences include extraordinary views of the city across the Boston Harbor, easy accessible transport- only a block away from the Maverick Square Blue Line T stop- as well as numerous shops and restaurants in the immediate vicinity. One of Portside’s operations managers, Michelle Ronayne, spoke on their on-call water taxi service offered out of a pier behind the property saying, “It’s actually easier to commute to downtown Boston from here than from much of the Seaport District. You can either go by water taxi or go two subway stops to State Street.”

The different units range in square feet and price. Studios with 567 square feet start at $1,925/month, one-bedrooms with 730 to 820 square feet start at $2,335/month and two bedrooms from 1,052 to 1,477 square feet start at $3,260/month. In addition you can purchase an outdoor parking space for $75 a month per vehicle and or a garage space that is $150 a month. It is a pet friendly environment with a fee of $30 a month per cat and $60 per dog.

Some stand out features included in a one-bedroom unit that was viewed include espresso-stained cabinets, granite counters with a breakfast bar and Whirlpool stainless-steel appliances. It includes a living/dining area with hardwood-look vinyl flooring, a carpeted bedroom and a porcelain-tiled bathroom. This 820-square-foot unit is renting for $2,500 a month.

Another unit that is 1,407 square feet with two bedrooms, two bathrooms, and a magnificent view of the Boston skyline is renting for $4,700/month. Some features in this end unit are an open kitchen/living/dining area with a granite island, a wall of windows and two glass doors out to a wraparound balcony.

Other outstanding amenities of the building include a 24-hour concierge service, a Wi-Fi enabled clubroom with a gas fireplace, a catering kitchen, a billiards table and gaming area, a business conference room, a children’s playroom and a fitness facility.

“We’re seeing renters from East Boston, the Seaport District and the North End who are coming over here for the view and moving here to get more space for the money,” said Frank McAdams, Portside’s director of operations.

It has been reported that 24 apartments were leased in the first two weeks which is great movement for Portside at East Pier. The next two buildings are scheduled to break ground in the spring adding an indoor swimming pool and roof decks. East Boston is on the rise and couldn’t see better progress of this luxury development. The opening is a major step in creating a dynamic, thriving waterfront neighborhood.

Boston Seaport District: Major Complex Sells for $169.75 Million

0518451-d-street-304xx405-608-38-0The Seaport Center of D Street and half an acre of land across from this major building in Boston has been sold for $169.75 million. According to documents filed at the Suffolk Registry of Deeds, this significant building located right in the heart of Boston’s Seaport District was bought by a 451 D Street LLC controlled by GE Asset Management. This now marks the second ownership group within the last two years for this property.

The transaction included property at 60-84 Fargo Street, known as 451 D Street or the Seaport Center, and 67- 75 Fargo Street. The purchase was financed by the GE Asset Management-controlled LLC along with a $108.4 million mortgage from Prima Mortgage Investment Trust.

Some significant tenants currently occupying 451 D Street include the Boston Herald and JP Morgan Chase who together, along with the other tenants, occupy this property that takes up 1.42 acres of this prized area in the Seaport.

Two years ago this major complex sold for $110 million to an entity that is controlled by Shorenstein Co., a National Real Estate Investor based out of San Francisco that specializes in high-quality office properties. This most recent sale of $169.75 million represents a rapid turnaround for Shorenstein and demonstrates a great performance in the commercial real estate market to go along with the recent rise in residential sales here on our local level. The best is yet to be.

Sotheby’s International Realty News: Luxury Brand Enters Poland

widok-emilia-1800x1200We at Gibson Sotheby’s International Realty are thrilled to see and broadcast the forever growing presence that Sotheby’s International Realty has in Europe. Sotheby’s International Realty Affiliates LLC announced that the leading Polish real estate firm Park House has joined our extraordinary network of luxury real estate. Poland Sotheby’s International Realty is now the only and exclusive partner currently operating in Poland.

Located in part of the most beautiful districts of Warsaw, Poland Sotheby’s International Realty is surrounded by historical architecture and wealthy neighborhoods. The firm is managed by Arkadiusz Wojciechowski and Piotr Sliwka who both signed an exclusive 25- year master franchise agreement with the Sotheby’s International Realty brand. The agreement is to develop this fine polished brand throughout Poland expanding and including the luxury residential real estate markets in Warsaw, Crocow, Wroclaw, Poznan and Lodz.

When speaking with Wojciechowski he said, “It is vitally important for our team to ensure that we understand our clients’ needs and to deliver efficient and personalized services with professionalism and confidentiality. The Polish real estate market is unique in that it is focused on a number of key cities with an array of high-end apartments and luxury developments, as well as spacious residences in the surrounding popular suburban towns and villages. Now with the support of the Sotheby’s International Realty brand we can bring Poland’s extraordinary and unique properties to the far-reaching corners of the world.” His main priority is to be able to provide his clients that are in need of higher quality service with finer luxury real estate across the globe.

President and Chief executive officer of Sotheby’s International Realty Affiliates LLC, Philip White, attended the launch of Poland Sotheby’s International Realty and is ecstatic about the new opportunities presented with this expansion of the Sotheby’s brand. White said, “Expansion across Europe continues our commitment to providing access to the Sotheby’s International Realty network’s exclusive real estate services in key cities around the world. This affiliation, which strengthens the brand’s presence in Europe, offers entrance into the famous capital city of Warsaw. I was proud to attend the Warsaw launch of Poland Sotheby’s International Realty in person, and am delighted that a global clientele will now have access to the brand in this historic part of the world.”

Globally our network now extends over 52 countries and territories encompassing approximately 720 offices. With over 15,000 dedicated sales professionals our brand is committed to helping its’ clients find a home in the world’s most desired locations. We at Gibson Sotheby’s International Realty would like to congratulate and sincerely welcome Mr. Wojciechowski, Mr. Sliwka, and their team to our one of a kind network. We look forward to collaborating in the near future!

Boston Luxury Apartments: AvalonBay Breaks Ground on $250M Project next to North Station

avalonbay-nasua-street-600xx556-834-0-0It is great news to see that work is underway for a 38-story residential tower in the West End of Boston. Located next to North Station, ‘Avalon North Station’ will have 503 brand new luxury apartments. This project is currently one of the biggest new apartment developments in the entirety of Boston.

Of these apartments, 30 of them will be designated as “affordable units” as per the code regulations throughout the city. Also, an added feature making this new development ever so desirable for potential residents is the building’s garage having 220 parking spaces.

This project is set to cost developers $250 million and will take more than two years only to complete. Thus, according to the developer, the endeavor will create 600 construction jobs.

Mayor Martin J. Walsh released a statement saying, “This is a terrific project for the neighborhood around North Station, which has seen great investment in residential construction recently. Avalon North Station will bring exciting new retail opportunities, easy access to public transportation for residents, and stronger connections to the surrounding community.”

Sotheby’s International Realty News: Tom Cruise’s $59 Million Telluride Mansion Listed

MN-AH516_PRIVPR_H_20141030123846Tom Cruise is currently listing his Colorado estate that encompasses 298 acres of land for an outstanding $59 million with one of our prodigious affiliates Telluride Sotheby’s International Realty.

Listing agent, Bill Fandel released that Cruise spent years designing and constructing this native stone and cedar home completing construction around 1994. He also stated that the actor is selling due to the lack of time being able to spend there in the past few years; especially now as he shoots the fifth film in the “Mission: Impossible” series.

Once getting past the astonishing views of the surrounding mountains, the main house of the estate measures a remarkable 10,000 square- feet. It includes four bedrooms, six bathrooms, a gym, a recreation room and a library. The guest house also measures about 1,600 square feet, with three bedrooms and three bathrooms.

“Carefully planned over the course of several years, the home offers exceptional design and meticulous craftsmanship throughout,” the listing reads. “Intimate spaces frame views of the surrounding mountains while bleached cedar timbers, dove-tail joinery and native stone showcase the finest materials and uncompromising attention to detail assembled by the region’s top builder.”

Just a 12-minute drive from downtown Telluride and Telluride Ski Resort this gated estate also includes a sports court for tennis, basketball and ice hockey. Also it has access to private trails and gated entry into tens of thousands of acres of surrounding National Forest.

Mr.  Fandel is the vice president and managing broker of Telluride Sotheby’s International Realty. He is a well-respected real estate advisor that represents Telluride Region’s most high-end buyers and sellers and is a frequent guest panelist for Sotheby’s International Realty at its Global Network events. He is also a founding member of the Sotheby’s International Realty Global Partnership. This group enables partnerships with over 30 of the top real estate professionals selected from around the Sotheby’s International Realty global network includingour very own Beth Dickerson here at Gibson Sotheby’s International Realty.

Boston Luxury Real Estate: Gibson Sotheby’s International Realty Sells 74 Beacon Street for $12.5 Million

view from Beacon hillThe luxury market has proven to be a dominating trend in Boston’s high end neighborhoods such as Back Bay and the South End. Home sales have skewed toward higher-end clientele with the number of buyers in search for a luxury home steadily increasing.

In the past there have been some difficulties in the market due to the rising prices of homes and lack of inventory, but these factors have not proven to be worrisome with our recent home sales here in Boston. Actually, the average number of days that homes have been listed on the market is lower than it has been in the past. We have even seen certain properties that have spent longer time periods on the market drastically impacted by this current surge in buyer demand. In fact, just a few weeks ago, 74 Beacon Street sold for an outstanding $12.5 million, as Gibson Sotheby’s International Realty’s William Montero procured the buyer.

This single family home is one of the grandest on Beacon Hill and the entirety of Boston. It encompasses 8,450 square feet of elegant indoor living space with six bedrooms, an au pair suite, and six full bathrooms.

Some additional features this stunning home includes are:

  • Eight fireplaces
  • Wine cellar with cigar humidor
  • State-of-the-art media room
  • Wood paneled library
  • Fully-equipped gym
  • Elevator and a roof-top pool
  • Private garden patio
  • Two rooftop decks
  • Three front balconies
  • Three parking spots (one being a garage space)

Whether there are first-time or existing home buyers in search of making a move; we at Gibson Sotheby’s International Realty have seen a push in the sales of luxury homes. Some additional properties that we have sold over the past 12 months include:

  • The Residences at Hooper Mansion Penthouse – $13.250M (Currently under agreement)
  • The Mandarin Unit W12B – $11.950M
  • 78 Beacon Street – $9.3M
  • 476 Beacon Street Penthouse – $6.5M (Currently under agreement)
  • 275 Marlborough Street – $5,607,500
  • 15 West Cedar – $5.225M
  • 23 West Cedar – $5.125M

With these recent sales, an ease in credit conditions, and existing home buyers downsizing while their children search for a home of their own, a great display of momentum in the market has been shown!

Sotheby’s International Realty Brand to Enter St. Martin

St-Martin-300x200The Sotheby’s International Realty network continues to expand globally as they are scheduled to open a new firm in St. Martin. This growth allows our white glove real estate services to be offered in yet again another magnificent location. What was once Pierres Caraibes, will now be doing business as St. Martin Sotheby’s International Realty. This new firm will be located at Plaza Caraibes Bat A BP 144 Rue Kennedy, Marigot and 48 Rhine Road, Cupecoy.

“We are thrilled to become part of the Sotheby’s International Realty brand’s exceptional global reach,” said branch owner, Lesley Reed. “Our mission is to provide a customer experience dictated by our professionalism and commitment to quality. It is company standard to keep our customers’ interest in all decisions and we pride ourselves on the reputation we have built since 1999.” Reed is ecstatic about joining this affiliation and most eager to be involved with the incredible worldwide reach Sotheby’s International Realty has to offer.

Philip White, the president and chief executive officer of Sotheby’s International Realty Affiliates LLC, announced that he was more than thrilled on this great new development welcoming a firm with such great ambitions. “St. Martin is a unique territory, with two countries, three currencies, three official languages and a multitude of cultures that spread over the 34 square miles of the island,” he said. “This Caribbean gem is outlined by sandy beaches, hillside valleys and a steady tropical climate. We are proud to welcome Lesley Reed and her team to our network, combining the rich history of our brand with their experience of more than 26 years in the local luxury market.”

The Sotheby’s International Realty network continues to grow and prosper as we are now present in over 52 countries and territories worldwide with roughly 720 offices. Having over 15,000 devoted and independent sales associates, we pride our success on each being readily willing and able to provide outstanding services to all clients.

We at Gibson Sotheby’s International Realty would like to congratulate St. Martin Sotheby’s International Realty on this great achievement and look forward to working with them in the near future!