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$100 Million Addresses

What today’s billionaires want in an ultra-luxury estate

Jared Paul Stern

Not so long ago, $100 million was the benchmark in ultra-luxury real estate, an extravagant figure reserved for a few massive properties beyond the reach of mere mortals: modern-day white elephants that nobody wanted even if they could afford them. Now, as the number of billionaires worldwide has ballooned—according to Forbes, there were 2,208 of them in 2018, up from 2,043 in 2017, representing an increase in total wealth of about $1.4 trillion—that number has come to be much more common. The focus these days isn’t so much on the purchase price as what the money gets you.

As ever-evolving technology puts even the most fantastical features within the realm of possibility, we can all aspire to live like Tony Stark, or at least Mark Zuckerberg. This goes way beyond the once vaunted “smart home” amenities that are now available to anyone with an iPhone. It’s not so much keeping up with the Joneses as keeping up with the Jetsons.

“It was only a few years ago that a $100 million listing was in the stratosphere and almost unheard of,” Zackary Wright, an executive director at Christie’s International Real Estate who assists lots of high-net-worth clients, tells Maxim. “Now, [some] homes are selling near or at this price point.” His firm’s most expensive property (as of this writing) is a house on Middle Gap Road in Hong Kong, known as one of the world’s most exclusive neighborhoods. The asking price is just under $447 million. It’s listed in the Greatest Estates section of the Christie’s website, where billionaires do their browsing,

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January/February 2019