By Linette Semino
Central Park’s real estate dominance is known worldwide; the neighborhoods surrounding this legendary park supply luxurious residential properties with price tags surpassing the $20 million mark. Today, a trophy penthouse on Fifth Avenue is on the market for an astonishing $125 million. These high-priced trophy residences are fixtures in the luxury real estate market and bold-faced buyers are willing to pay exorbitant prices for residences with panoramic views of Central Park.
15 Central Park West is one of New York’s most prestigious residential addresses. Since sales began in 2005, 15 Central Park West has made headlines for its record-setting sales. Today, these exclusive condos command an average price of $6,700 per square foot. At the moment, there is a lavish 5-bedroom home on the 35th floor with uninterrupted views of Central Park for sale at $85 million. This trophy apartment, which was originally listed at $95 million, is also available for rent at $125,000 a month. Wealthy buyers can choose from a number of other beautiful apartments in the building including a three-bedroom on the 7th floor with park views at $30 million or a five-bedroom home facing Broadway asking $32 million.
Coveted residences at 15 CPW have been purchased by celebrities, sports figures, Wall Street titans and billionaires. They include steel magnate Leroy Schecter, Goldman Sachs CEO Lloyd Blankfein, actor Denzel Washington, musician Sting and Nascar driver Jeff Gordon. Star Yankee Alex Rodriguez once rented a residence for $30,000 a month and rumor has it that earlier this year he checked out a gorgeous rental overlooking the park. 15 CPW was built in 2008 by developers William and Arthur Zeckendorf and designed by “modern traditionalist” architect Robert A.M Stern who was inspired by the great New York pre-war apartments of the 1920s. Wealthy buyers are attracted to 15 CPW’s exceptional elegance and park frontage.
Many of the posh apartments on Central Park come with refined hotel style services. In 2011, Russian composer Igor Krutoy and his wife Olga purchased a 12th-floor condo at the Plaza Hotel for a reported $48 million, which the New York Post identified as the highest price for a New York City condo at the time. Today, a grandiose 6,319 square feet, four-bedroom penthouse encompassing the 19th, 20th, and 21st floors with direct views of Central Park is asking $59 million. For $52 million, buyers can acquire a 5,850 square foot, corner four-bedroom residence on the 8th floor—both setting new record-highs in the building. Currently, the Plaza Hotel has a beautiful two-bedroom, 2,230 square foot condo for rent at $27,000 a month.
Condominiums at The Time Warner Center, 80 Columbus Circle, also include hotel services offered by the Mandarin Oriental Hotel. Here, a 4,825 square foot, four-bedroom residence asks $50 million and a smaller (3,168 square foot), four-bedroom home can be had for $25 million. On the other side of the park, Fifth Avenue between East 59th and 61st Streets currently has Central Park’s most expensive hotel residences and they are both co-op apartments. The Sherry Netherland’s 7,000 square foot penthouse is asking $95 million, while The Pierre Hotel’s impressive penthouse asks an unbelievable price of $125 million. This penthouse encompasses the entire 41st, 42nd, and 43rd floors and offers 360-degree views of the park and Manhattan’s skyline. If you are a billionaire and you really want that penthouse, $125 million is nothing!
Not all apartments with views of Central Park command such sky-high prices. The Century Condominium at 25 Central Park West, right next to 15 CPW, offers beautiful art-deco architecture and residences that feature magnificent views of the park. Warburg Realty’s Maria Daou represents a corner two-bedroom condo overlooking the park asking $7,295,000. At 25 CPW, one-bedroom condos start at $1.2 million, which seems reasonable for such a fantastic location.
Buyers looking for a property on Central Park under $1.5 million should consider Upper West Side’s Manhattan Valley and Upper East Side’s Carnegie Hill as these neighborhoods offer some of the best values. For example, 415 Central Park West located between West 101st and 102nd streets currently has a two-bedroom co-op at $1,175,000. A two-bedroom rental is available at $5,300. 1270 Fifth Avenue is a co-op building located between East 108th and 109th streets where a two-bedroom residence can be found at $895,000 and a three-bedroom for $925,000. If you are looking to rent in these neighborhoods, one-bedroom units can be found starting at $3,000 and two-bedroom units starting at $4,200.
In 1872, Central Park’s landscape designer Frederick Law Olmsted described this urban oasis as offering “Simplicity, tranquility and unsophisticated naturalness.” Perhaps these three qualities are what draw people to Central Park and compel them to pay such elevated prices for a view of our most beloved public space. •