Photo: Courtesy of One57
The high end of the luxury real estate market had a great 2012, with real estate records being broken from coast to coast.We combed back through our archives to find the biggest residential real estate transactions reported in the past 12 months.
Buyers on our list include tech CEOs, finance moguls, and celebrities.
In December, Yammer CEO David Sacks reportedly bought a mansion on San Francisco's 'Billionaire's Row' for $34.5 million, making it the most expensive home ever sold in the city, according to Trulia. The unfinished, 21,888-square-foot French limestone mansion was sold by Peter Sperling of the Apollo Group, which owns the University of Phoenix.
*Update: Real estate transaction records show that the final purchase price on this home was actually $20 million, according to Trulia.
Hedge fund manager Eddie Lampert bought a home on an Indian Creek Island off Florida's Biscayne Bay for 'nearly $40 million' in March, the Wall Street Journal reported. The sellers were Miami businessman Paul Cejas and his wife, who owned the property through a trust.
Billionaire Robert Bass and his wife Ann bought the half-floor spread at 834 Fifth Avenue from Damon Mezzacappa, the former vice chairman of Lazard, in late January. The Basses reportedly paid $8 million over Mezzacappa's initial listing price of $34 million for the apartment.
In December, Curbed Hamptons reported that two adjacent properties in East Hampton had sold for $25 million and $20 million, respectively. Both homes were purchased by the same anonymous individual, making it the biggest sale in the Hamptons in 2012 by a healthy margin.
After rumours that the billionaire Prime Minister of Qatar, Sheik Hamad bin Jassim bin Jaber Al-Thani, had purchased several blockbuster properties in Manhattan, The New York Post reported that the Sheikh had actually purchased a 71st Street townhouse in June for $47 million. Real estate mogul Aby Rosen sold the 21,000-square-foot home, which had at one time been listed for $75 million.
In June, hedge fund manager John Paulson paid $49 million for the 95-acre Hala Ranch in Aspen, Colorado. Initially listed for $135 million, it was sold by Saudi Prince Bandar bin Sultan, a former ambassador to the U.S. who built the massive ski chalet in 1991.
Hong Kong billionaire and fashion tycoon Silas Chou, half the the team that took fashion brand Michael Kors public earlier this year, paid 'just over $50 million' for a full-floor unit above the 80th floor at One57 in September.
In May, Oaktree Capital founder Howard Marks bought two adjoining duplexes at Manhattan's most prestigious address from Courtney Sale Ross, widow of former Time Warner CEO Steve Ross. The combined apartment has more than 30 rooms in total.
Music mogul David Geffen purchased the palatial spread from socialite Denise Rich in November, breaking the record for the most expensive co-op ever sold. The 12,000-square-foot apartment was initially listed at $65 million.
Casino tycoon Steve Wynn bought the condo from Christopher M. Jeffries, a founding partner of commercial real estate firm Millennium Partners, in June. The apartment, which had been the hotel's ball room, has 14 rooms and 10,882 square feet of space.
Russian billionaire Dmitry Rybolovlev bought the apartment from ex-Citigroup CEO Sandy Weill for the exact price it was listed for just weeks earlier. The oligarch reportedly bought the apartment for his college-aged daughter to use when she visits New York City. The sale was first reported in December, but became official in February 2012.
Billionaire St. Louis Rams owner Stan Kroenke bought the 123,000-acre Broken O Ranch in Montana in November. While the final sale price was not revealed, if Kroenke paid anywhere near the $132.5 million asking price, it would have been by far the biggest residential real estate sale in the U.S. this year. It was sold by the estate of William and Desiree Moore, the late founders of the Kelley-Moore Paint Company.
It's not exactly a single property, but Oracle CEO Larry Ellison made a massive property purchase in June when he bought up 98 per cent of the pristine Hawaiian island of Lanai, a 141-square-mile parcel once known for its pineapple farms. The seller was billionaire David Murdock, and while no official purchase price has been revealed, it was estimated to have cost Ellison around $500 million.
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