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In Market

New London Buyers Seek Anonymity; Blockbuster Virtual Real Estate Sale

Dec 2, 2021 | By: Zoe Rosenberg

New Class of London Buyers Prizes Anonymity Over Trophy Deals

A new kind of high-net-worth individual is emerging as a force in the London real estate market, with tastes that aren’t as flashy as their predecessors’. Tatler reports, by way of the Times, that tech and cryptocurrency entrepreneurs in their early to mid thirties are behind a boost in property sales over £10 million (about $13.3 million) in London. But unlike the elite who came before them, they are content to purchase more low-key residences. 

Marc Schneiderman, director of luxury London estate agents Arlington Residential, told the Times that discretion is key, with this set of buyers seeking to avoid the publicity that comes along with big deals and the profile that accompanies living in top-tier neighborhoods. Unlike the blockbuster sales of yore in more posh neighborhoods like Knightsbridge and Belgravia, this new class of buyers, many of whom saw their wealth soar during the pandemic, is opting for more emerging locations and homes that have yet to be listed on property websites. “It’s not that they can’t afford it… but they’re keen to retain their anonymity,” Schneiderman told the paper.

Virtual Land Sale Is Priciest in Decentraland History

A plot of virtual land in the online world Decentraland sold for a record $2.4 million this week, Reuters reports, marking the most expensive purchase of virtual real estate on the platform. The buyer, a subsidiary of Tokens.com called “Metaverse Group,” purchased an assemblage of 116 parcels measuring 52.5 square feet each—or 6,090 virtual square feet in total—in Decentraland’s “Fashion Street” area, where the group plans to host digital fashion shows and sell virtual clothing for avatars. “Fashion is the next massive area for growth in the metaverse,” Sam Hamilton, head of content at the Decentraland Foundation, said in a statement cited by the New York Post. “So it’s timely, and very exciting, that Metaverse Group has made such a decisive commitment with this land purchase in the heart of Decentraland’s fashion precinct.”

The trade was made in MANA, Decentraland’s highly volatile cryptocurrency. Reuters reports that MANA has gained around 400% this month after Facebook announced a name change to Meta. The $2.4 million sale far surpasses the former record, a $913,228 purchase in June of land the buyers used to build a virtual shopping center to sell digital clothing. Reuters reports that it has visited the virtual site several times since it was built and has not seen any shoppers.

17 Jane Sells Out with $31.9 Million Contract

An anonymous buyer has inked over $40 million in contracts on two residences at 17 Jane, signaling a total sellout for the West Village ground-up development designed by David Chipperfield, according to Donna Olshan’s weekly Luxury Market Report. The deal comprises two residences, a $9.65 million three-bedroom condo and a $31.9 million townhouse-style residence with five bedrooms and a 1,773-square-foot private backyard, that went into contract last week. In addition to the anonymous buyer, actress Jennifer Lawrence and husband Cooke Maroney also reportedly own a home in the building.

One United Nations Park Teams Up with Boffi|DePadova

One United Nations Park, the condominium building designed inside and out by Meier Partners along the East River waterfront in Manhattan’s Murray Hill, is now offering building residents exclusive pricing opportunities and complimentary design services from Boffi|DePadova. The announcement comes along with word that the building has unveiled two model residences by Boffi|DePadova; it’s the first time the Italian firm has collaborated with a residential building in New York to design furnished model homes.

Condominiums begin on the building’s 28th floor, affording the residents views over Manhattan and the East River. Currently available residences have one- to four-bedroom layouts with prices starting at $1.38 million. In addition to an in-residence Crestron smart-home system that regulates lighting, temperature, and motorized shades, amenities include a private underground parking garage with a motor court as well as a fitness center with a 70-foot indoor lap pool overlooking the East River.