California plot shaking up the real estate world

Wednesday, August 1, 2018

Manhattan was purchased from native Americans by the Dutch in 1626 for 60 guilders or about $1,000.

Calling itself the cultural, financial, media and entertainment capital, Manhattan is perhaps the most expensive piece of property in the world.

But there’s a little chunk of California that is shaking up the real estate world and is trying to rival Manhattan’s high-priced digs.

A 157-acre plot of ground high above Los Angeles is hitting the market for a cool $1 billion.

But it has a view!

Keep in mind that this gorgeous property is vacant. Although understandably stunning, it’s basically an empty lot. For that price, it does not come with a home.

Millionaires need not inquire on the property. It is reserved for a select list of 2,800 billionaires worldwide.

A few years back, an oceanfront property in the Hamptons sold for $137 million, a then-record for a single-family property. But keep in mind, this California property does not include a residence.

The highest price ever for a home was the $300 million French property purchased by a Saudi prince. Who else?

Extremely high-price lots in pricey LA neighborhoods run around $20 million per acre.

But this hilltop real estate has expensive tongues waging.

Tom Cruise tried once to buy the property.

And 30 years ago, Merv Griffin actually purchased the lot with plans to build a 60,000 sq. ft. home. He eventually abandoned those plans and sold the lot.

Five billionaires have been targeted as potential buyers. Their addresses are in London, Qatar, Russia and China.

Insiders believe the property will go into a fire sale for a much-reduced amount — say around $500 million or so.

There’s much discussion these days about income inequality. And let’s be honest, few among us can even imagine a property with that price tag.

A news article last week opined that Jeff Bezos of Amazon fame may be the world’s first trillionaire.

These astronomical numbers are mind-boggling.

Like you perhaps, I put these figures into my small world. And I wonder — like a liberal — if in fact there is such a thing as too much money.

As a staunch conservative and capitalist, the answer is absolutely not.

But when I consider an empty lot — granted, a beautiful empty lot — for $1 billion, it gets you thinking.

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