Many parents celebrate their children's milestones by commemorating important events with parties. Others buy their kids multimillion dollar apartments for when they attend college. A woman in China has done just that.
An unnamed Chinese woman has purchased an apartment for $6.5 million at the much buzzed-about luxury apartment building One57 in New York City for her daughter. With China’s growing wealthy population, this in itself is not particularly unique, but when her broker asked the woman what she was looking for, it was her answer that left him shocked.
“She said it had to do with her daughter, who was planning on going to Columbia or NYU, maybe Harvard, so she needed to be in the center of the city, which is why she was picking this one particular apartment,” the broker told a CCTV reporter.
“I said, ‘How old is your daughter?’ And she said, ‘Well, she’s 2.’ And I was just shocked.”
China’s state-run news channel, CCTV News, reported that the woman was looking for a centrally located apartment for her 2-year-old baby daughter, who she assumes will not only live in New York, but also attend the top universities that the city has to offer. (It's not clear what will happen to the apartment if the child eventually goes to Harvard, which is in Boston.)
The recent surge of wealth in China has many not only buying property at home, but also abroad. According to the report, Chinese nationals are now a significant percentage of the luxury apartment real estate business in New York. About 11 percent of international sales go to Chinese buyers, mostly in the high-end market, and that share is increasing.
“Right now they [Chinese buyers] make up a quarter of my dollar volume, and what’s more interesting is that two years ago it was only 15 percent, and before that it was only 5 percent,” the broker said.
The building, which was formerly known as Carnegie 57, is a 90-story skyscraper at 157 West 57th Street. The Midtown Manhattan building includes a Park Hyatt luxury hotel at its base. Due to be completed this year, the tower will stand at 306 meters (1,004 feet), making it the city's tallest residential building.
The woman’s daughter will be in wealthy company as the building will also be the future home to several international billionaires. According to the New York Times, as of last September, the billionaire buyers include at least two other buyers from China, a Canadian, a Nigerian and a Briton, among several wealthy Americans. Gary Barnett, president of Extell Development Company, the building’s developers, said that a handful of buyers were “significant Forbes billionaires.”
The building previously made local headlines in New York during Hurricane Sandy when a crane precariously dangled from the building's roof due to strong winds.