Grand Prix is Looking to Award the Best of the Best

Real estate developers and entrepreneurs have the opportunity to gain international recognition with the annual Grand Prix of Real Estate. The annual award aims to recognize a project, which best embodies excellence in all the real estate disciplines in its creation.

The International Real Estate Federation- US Chapter (FIABCI-USA) started the award program in hopes of creating a tradition of excellence in real estate development. Awarded by an international jury comprising top real estate professionals and experts, the Grand Prix of Real Estate rewards overall merit and not just aesthetics, functionality or size.

Winners gain access to unique international platforms for their projects and companies throughout the extensive FIABCI network of more than 60 members’ countries and over 120 professional organizations worldwide.

The Grand Prix’s deadline is rapidly approaching (September 15), but there is still time to apply or contact someone in your community that would represent the best of the best in real estate development.

—Caitlin Flynn

July Home Sales Drop, but Prices Continue to Rise

The monthly RE/MAX National Housing Report for July showed a strengthening market, despite a drop in sales for July 2014.  Home sales fell below June 2014 by 3.1 percent, and fell 6.8 percent from July 2013. “Sales are following the expected seasonal pattern and are approaching the levels we saw last year,” said Margaret Kelly, RE/MAX CEO. The homes sales in 2014 may not be rising as quickly as in 2013, but they are still above the sales of the same period in 2012.

July home prices were 7.9 percent higher than prices last July. The inventory of homes for sale is moving in the right direction, with year-over-year losses growing smaller each month. Three of the last four months have seen month-over month increases in inventory. At the rate of home sales in July, the month’s supply of inventory increased to 4.3, where a supply of 6.0 indicates a market balanced equally between buyers and sellers. There was also a two-day drop in average days on the market from both the previous month and July 2013, from 62 days to 60 days in July 2014.

The drop in July homes sales notwithstanding, the National Housing Report shows a continuing trend of consumer confidence in the housing market. “As inventory continues to build the recovery continues at a more stable and sustainable rate,” explained Kelly.

—Caitlin Flynn

Renderings, Architect Revealed for 515 High Line

The Bauhouse Group, a New York City-based real estate development and investment firm, has unveiled renderings for 515 High Line, one of Manhattan’s most coveted developments located at 515 West 29th Street. Bauhouse has selected acclaimed Singapore architect Soo K. Chan, founder of the award-winning firm SCDA Architects, as the Principal Architect for the luxury condominium, which is uniquely situated at the center of the 90-degree bend of the High Line park at 29th Street, making it the only site with High Line views on two sides.

“Given the unique location of 515 West 29th Street, we sought a designer with the global experience, vision and sophistication to match the high caliber of new residential development in what has become the modern art capital of the world,” said Joseph Beninati, managing member of Bauhouse. The homes will range from 2,100 to 4,400 square feet and from $5 million to $25 million in price. The building will also tout three penthouses with substantial private outdoor spaces and 22-foot ceilings.

The $125 million development, slated for completion in late 2015, will offer bespoke, sophisticated residences with expansive outdoor spaces, double height ceilings, and breathtaking views. 515 High Line is uniquely positioned to have five vantage points, and its sculptural façade consists of laser cut fritted laminated glass plates and steel, which reflects the interplay of organic and made-made characteristics of the urban park.

515 West 29th Street is slated to begin sales in fall 2014. More information is available at

—Caitlin Flynn

U.S. and Chinese Real Estate Organizations Form a Committee

At the conclusion of a five-day Trade Mission to China, the International Real Estate Federation – U.S. Chapter (FIABCI-USA) and the China Institute of Real Estate Appraisers & Agents (CIREA) agreed to form a Permanent Select Committee on doing business between the United States and China.

A group of nine real estate professionals from across the U.S. completed a trade mission to China on last month. The mission included attending CIREA’s annual real estate agents conference, visits to some of the largest real estate brokerages in Beijing and attending an elective course for FIABCI’s International Real Estate Consultant (FIREC) designation.

Capital flows from China to the U.S. continue to grow. The FIABCI-USA delegation was headed by President Edward Alford from South Hadley, MA. “I am extremely honored to have led this group of high-caliber real estate professionals to Beijing and was overwhelmed by the gracious hospitality of our CIREA hosts,” says Alford. “I felt it necessary to assure our hosts that we were interested in mutual cooperation over the long term and welcomed the opportunity to formalize our intent through the formation of a select committee.”

In addition to President Alford, the FIABCI-USA delegation included President Elect Ruth Kruger from Aspen, Colorado; Treasurer Maire Rosol from Park City, Utah; Vice-President Elizabeth Davidson from Kirkland, Washington; Nancy & Peter Suvarnamani from Chicago, Illinois; Dano Sayles from Hawaii; John Krolick from Incline Village, Nevada; and Secretary General Bill Endsley from Chicago, Illinois. The delegation enjoyed sightseeing trips around Beijing and numerous sumptuous Chinese meals with potential new partners and the staff of Beijing Orient US-China Consulting Co., Ltd., which facilitated the trade mission.

FIABCI has welcomed over 150 real estate professionals from China as members over the last year and expects to grow significantly as additional groups of Chinese professionals complete FIREC training courses in doing business abroad, ethics, negotiation, financing and valuation. FIABCI provides access and opportunity for real estate professionals in more than 60 countries interested in completing cross border transactions.

For more information about FIABCI-USA visit here.

Luxury Real Estate Redesigns Summer 2014 Magazine

The summer 2014 edition of Luxury Real Estate Magazine debuts a fresh new look with a crisp, bright white background that instantly grabs reader’s attention and focuses them straight to the magazine’s high-quality images and content. The different features and profiles throughout the magazine flow seamlessly with the new design and add to its cohesive layout.

John Brian Losh, Chairman/Publisher of Luxury Real Estate, highlights the 10-year anniversary of the Luxury Real Estate Board of Regents in the summer issue and shares the exciting news of the launch of the brand new The exclusive Bald Eagle Estate in Park City, Utah, listed by one of the newest Board of Regents members, Summit, graces the front cover of the magazine with a spectacular interior photo that showcases the décor designed by Naomi Leff, designer to some of Hollywood’s biggest stars.

The latest issue also features a new editorial piece titled, “Five Million Dollar Face-Off,” which compares the type of home $5 million can buy in five different places around the world. The Seen & Heard section recaps some of the best moments of the 12th Annual Luxury Real Estate Spring Retreat and showcases the charity work and special events of Who’s Who in Luxury Real Estate members, Chinowth & Cohen Realtors, Kentwood City Properties and Gulf Coast International Properties.

The Luxury Real Estate Magazine is published three times a year and distributed to international newsstands reaching into 80 countries, domestic and international airline lounges and many of the world’s most affluent households and individuals. Click here to view the summer 2014 edition of the award-winning Luxury Real Estate Magazine.

— Caitlin Flynn

Two New Ismael Leyva Projects Coming to Brooklyn

Renowned New York City architectural firm Ismael Leyva Architects, recently opened the luxury residential building 66 Rockwell (left) for leasing, and is finishing construction on a 40-story residential high rise at 309 Gold Street called BKLYN|AIR (formally advertised as Oro 2). The firm designed both the exterior and interior of the angular Brooklyn skyscrapers, which will offer residents an unparalleled array of amenities.

Both buildings boast a unique, angular exterior and a contemporary interior for which Ismael Leyva Architects is famous. 66 Rockwell and BKLYN|AIR soar 40 stories and 42 stories, and will include 326 and 255 residential units, respectively. They will both include outdoor terraces, fitness centers, yoga rooms, and high-up desirable views of the Manhattan and the Brooklyn Bridge as well as the Manhattan skyline.

The two buildings are offering luxury studio, one-bedroom, two-bedroom, and three-bedroom (BKLYN|AIR only) apartments, each carefully designed by Ismael Leyva Architects. For the benefit of the residents, the buildings are centrally located in downtown Brooklyn, with easy access to transit arteries that provide convenience for commuting residents. These luxury high rises offer immersion in Brooklyn’s BAM Cultural district, with access to the arts, top restaurants, Fort Greene Park and local museums.

— Caitlin Flynn

First FENDI Chateau Residences Launched In Miami

Condominium project offering an immersive and new concept for refined living.

Luxury private developer Château Group and FENDI, the Italian luxury house, have linked a partnership to develop FENDI Château Residences, a new and exclusive 12-story waterfront condominium building located in Miami, Florida, two blocks south of The Bal Harbour Shops. This new venture marks FENDI’s first branded real estate project globally, a new concept that offers its discerning clientele a unique and emotional lifestyle experience that starts at the threshold.

FENDI Château Residences, slated to be completed in June 2016, bring together FENDI and Château Group – two leading global brands synonymous with style. Both share an unwavering passion for producing high quality products with an acute focus on design and creativity, underscored by the art of excellence.

“Characterized by an innovative undulated architecture that echoes the waves, FENDI Château Residences feature expansive waterfront apartments with breathtaking views of the Atlantic Ocean. Its residences and deluxe amenities combine function along with FENDI-style on a grand scale for the very first time,” says Manuel Grosskopf, president of Château Group.

Located at 9365 Collins Ave., FENDI Château Residences feature 58 exclusive floor-thru oceanfront residences and penthouses ranging in size from 3,300 square feet to more than 7,000 square feet, with prices from $5 million to $22 million. Each residence includes a FENDI Casa kitchen – a complete chef’s kitchen with custom FENDI Casa cabinets and Gaggenau appliances. All residences boast finished bathrooms featuring Italian marble with custom-designed fixtures, along with staff quarters and laundry areas, which include full bathrooms. Residents also have the option to include FENDI Casa decorative elements throughout their apartment.

The homes are characterized by bespoke designs and feature distinctive materials such as streaked woods, smoky glass and bronzed reflections that seamlessly reflect FENDI’s highest standards. The residences boast 10-foot ceilings, sweeping views and glass-railed terraces, offering an added level of unmatched refinement and unique architectural elements.

FENDI Château Residences’ plush amenity areas are exquisitely designed by FENDI and decorated with FENDI Casa fixtures and fittings. The common areas include a private restaurant with a full chef’s kitchen; lounge with gourmet kitchen; library; business center; ballroom; kid’s club; private cinema; state-of-the-art fitness center overlooking the ocean; bicycle storage; multiple beachfront pools with cabanas; reflective ponds; spas and Jacuzzis; and a relaxation terrace with aromatherapy. Residents also have access to five-star, white-glove services, including a 24-hour multi-lingual concierge staff, beachfront and poolside service and a doorman and valet.

Strategically located in one of the region’s most prestigious private resort destinations, FENDI Château Residences offer residents the possibility to savor the pulsating life of Miami with its avant-garde art and design culture, as well as its sandy beaches and lush surroundings.

The Most Expensive Homes For Sale In New York

The majority of the most expensive homes for sale in America are found in New York, reports Curbed National.

Among the most expensive properties currently for sale in the country, there are 75 alone in New York with a list price of $30 million or over, reports Curbed. Here is a list of the nine most expensive:

10 West St., $118.5 million:

In Manhattan’s Battery Park is the city’s priciest listing, a three-unit penthouse combination in the Ritz-Carlton. The three units are currently owned by two separate people, but the combined 15,434-square-foot interiors, plus 2,193 square feet of terrace space, will theoretically be sold as a package.

12 East 69th St., $114 million:

Vincent Viola, the owner of the Florida Panthers, and his wife Teresa are selling this 19th-century Manhattan townhouse, after buying it for $20 million in 2005. The 20,000-square-foot residence boasts floors made from old railroad tiles, a Venetian-onyx elevator, a 900-square-foot dining room, gold-leafed walls and a red-velvet home theater.

156 West 56th St., $100 million:

This triplex penthouse was first listed in 2012, and is now on the market again without a broker, making it the most expensive “For Sale By Owner” house in the country. Features include over 8,000 square feet, 6 bedrooms, 9 baths, a private elevator, wine cellar, separate maid quarters and an additional 3,000 square feet of exterior space.

2 East 61st St., $95 million:

This penthouse triplex at The Pierre Hotel belonged to the late financial expert Martin Zweig and encompasses the 41st, 42nd and 43rd floors. Beautiful 360-degree views of Manhattan can be enjoyed in this incomparable property. It also includes the original ballroom at The Pierre Hotel.

635 West 42nd St., $85 million:

The Atelier on 42nd Street near the Hudson River has lumped together nine apartments on its 45th floor and is selling them together for $85 million. The package would total 10,000 square feet and incredible views, and would also include a $2 million construction credit.

432 Park Ave., 94th floor, $82.5 million:

The six-bedroom, seven-plus-bath, 94th-floor penthouse of 432 Park Ave. enjoys panoramic views of Central Park and the city. Features include a wood-burning fireplace, a chef’s kitchen with top-of-the-line appliances, a wine cellar and a spacious master suite.

1 Central Park South, $80 million:

Tommy Hilfiger is selling his Plaza penthouse, which is made of three combined units. Features include one of the Plaza’s domed turret-towers; a custom-painted Eloise mural by Hillary Knight, the book’s original illustrator; and a terrace with Central Park Views.

432 Park Ave., 88th floor, $76.5 million:

This full-floor, 8,055-square-foot penthouse features five bedrooms, seven baths, panoramic views of Central Park and the city. The interiors boast solid oak flooring, soaring ceilings and expansive windows.

25 Columbus Circle, $68 million:

Time Warner Center’s penthouse 78 boasts nearly 400 feet of views in four directions, including over 120 feet of Central Park views. It is the largest full-floor penthouse with over 8,000 square feet and is on the highest floor available on the market.

LCOR Releases The Top-Floor Residences at 250N10

The vibrant, full-service Williamsburg rental building is nearly 60 percent leased in four months.

LCOR, a fully integrated real estate company specializing in property development, investment and management, has launched leasing for the fifth and sixth floors at 250N10, including seven stunning terraced residences. These exceptional apartments offer residents spacious, light-filled homes with large private terraces and incomparable views of the city skylines and iconic Williamsburg Bridge.

“The terraced sixth floor homes at 250N10 offer twice the amount of outdoor space of comparable apartments in the neighborhood, creating the unique opportunity for residents to customize their own personal outdoor living rooms,” said David Sigman, executive vice president of LCOR. “Most of the buildings surrounding 250N10 are low-rise, allowing for outstanding views of Manhattan and Brooklyn from these high-floor homes.”

These refined, modern homes feature sleek design details and high-end finishes including large gourmet kitchens with stainless steel appliances and crisp bathrooms with glass tile highlights. The seven terraced residences range from one- to two-bedroom layouts, and are priced between $4,275 and $6,795.

Along with the unveiling of the top-floor residences, 250N10 reached additional notable milestones, with nearly 60 percent of homes leased and the opening of the amenity spaces. The Marketing Directors, the exclusive leasing team for the building, has leased 136 of the building’s 234 apartments, after the building officially launched in April of this year.

“Many of the renters are drawn to the full-service lifestyle provided at 250N10, as well as the prime location in this influential hub of Brooklyn,” said Adrienne Albert, CEO of The Marketing Directors. “Since launching just four months ago, 250N10 has seen impressive leasing success, and now that the amenities are complete, we expect leasing will continue at a swift pace”

In addition to the newly released fifth and sixth floor homes, 250N10 offers residents a mix of spacious studios, one- and two-bedroom units. Pricing for available homes starts at $2,750 for a studio, $3,400 for a one-bedroom and $4,800 for a two-bedroom.

Residents are offered an array of amenities, including a café lounge  with free WiFi, television and complimentary coffee. The lounge leads out to the building’s stunning landscaped courtyard. Residents also have access to a state-of-the-art fitness center equipped with cardio and weight rooms, a resident’s lounge with pool table and flat screen TV and a furnished roof deck with a BBQ area. Additional amenities include a dramatic two-story lobby and 24-hour concierge services.

250N10 is centrally situated in Williamsburg, just steps from the eclectic Bedford Avenue with its mix of top boutiques, unique cafes, art galleries, highly rated restaurants and music venues. The building is also located near iconic neighborhood venues such as McCarren Park, the Brooklyn Bowl, the Brooklyn Flea and Smorgasburg as well as the Brooklyn Brewery. Just minutes from the L train and the NYC water taxi stop at North 7th Street, residents also have the benefit of a quick one-stop commute to Manhattan.

Leasing Launches at Aurora

The in-demand property is in the North Bethesda Center at the White Flint Metrorail station.

Leasing formally launched at Aurora, and LCOR property on July 11th, but 16 percent of homes were leased during the previews phase.

“Aurora has seen an impressive amount of early interest, as residents are continuously drawn to this community, with its proximity to Metro and short commute to D.C., National Institutes of Health, Walter Reed Military Medical Center and Bethesda,” said Bill Hard, executive vice president of LCOR. “When designing Aurora we paid close attention to the amenity spaces. It is important to us to create an environment that serves as an extension to the resident’s individual homes, with a diverse range of offerings to suit any lifestyle.”

The 18-story luxury building features studio and one-and two-bedrooms apartments with prices ranging from $1,405 to $1,762 for a studio, $1,752 to $2,372 for a one-bedroom unit and $2,293 to $2,824 for a two-bedroom home.

Sustainably built, the building is slated for LEED certification. A smoke-free building, the 341 rental units use efficient plumbing and utilizes designated spaces to support recycling efforts.

Offering amenities that serve as an extension of each unit, residents can enjoy the Aurora Sky Club on the 18th floor that includes a bar, TV lounge, a resort-style pool with a sun deck and sun shelf, a rooftop terrace, conference area, business lounge equipped with Apple and PC computer and a media/game room with shuffle board, table tennis, foosball and electronic gaming systems. Residents can also enjoy a golf simulator, bike repair station, state-of-the-art fitness center, 386 on-site parking spaces and concierge services.

A community green space between Aurora and LCOR’s sister property Wentworth House offers a space for relaxation and will host movies in the park and yoga nights.

LCOR’s North Bethesda Center  is a 32-acre city within a city, the largest joint development project ever approved by the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority. Within steps of the Red Line metro service, the area will be equipped with luxury residences, office space, shopping, dining and entertainment and public outdoor space.