Thursday, March 1, 2012

The Rich Have to Live Somewhere Too!

Thanks to Pacwest International Management for the following that arrived in my inbox today.

Living Very Large-Building Big is Back

March 1,2012

Big is Back with the Rich and Famous

Anthony Pritzker New Home
Shooting ranges, an indoor tennis court, a bedroom bigger than many houses: For a small cadre of very wealthy owners, building big is back. The latest project of Hyatt hotel heir Anthony Pritzker is a 49,300-square-foot building designed by an architecture firm in Paris. It involves a small army of specialized consultants and boasts amenities like a bowling alley, hairdressing area and gym.The project, in the hills above Los Angeles, isn't a luxury hotel—it's a private home for Mr. Pritzker and his family.

Four years into the housing downturn, what little new-home construction remains is focused on downsized living. According to the Census Bureau, the average size of a newly completed single-family home peaked in 2007 at 2,521 square feet, capping nearly three decades of growth, falling to 2,392 square feet in 2010. Then there are the exceptions, a small cadre of homeowners who are currently building mansions that are 10 times that size. Interviews with the small pool of luxury builders who handle such projects, and a perusal of permits in wealthy areas including parts of Connecticut and California, suggests that for some of the mega-wealthy, big is back.

Home Brings $100 Million

A Russian billionaire investor paid $100 million for a French chateau-style mansion in Silicon Valley, marking the highest known price paid for a single-family home in the U.S. The purchase of the 25,500-square-foot home in Los Altos Hills, Calif., underscores the strength of some luxury properties in an otherwise depressed housing market. The buyer, Yuri Milner, 49, who heads Digital Sky Technologies and whose investments include Facebook Inc., Groupon Inc. and Zynga Inc., had no immediate plans to move into the home Milner is the stocky founder of DST, a Moscow-based fund that's made a splash in Silicon Valley via its investments. Its first in the U.S. was a $200 million check for Facebook in 2009. His primary residence is in Moscow, where he lives with his wife and two children.

PacWest International Management Inc.
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