Alibaba’s Joe Tsai Drops $157.5 Million on Manhattan Duplex Penthouse
Since it was built, 220 Central Park South has been undoubtedly one of New York City's most successful and profitable residential projects. Designed by master architect Robert A.M. Star clad in Alabama limestone and punctuated by Julia balconies, recessed patios, and decorative metalwork, the 950-foot, 118-unit tower combines an imposing pre-war entrance facade with a laundry list of 21st-century conveniences, not to mention the epic view across Central Park. The building was such a success, according to CityRealty, that it single-handedly "kept the super-high-end market alight" during a downturn in New York real estate during the pandemic. In fact, its condos comprised the 22 largest sales in the city; and the total of 46 sales in this 12-month period adds up to a staggering $ 1.52 billion.
While the developers have deliberately kept details of the interior design for 220 Central Park South tight - this adds to the mystique and ultra-exclusivity of the development - the fab building's many five-star amenities include a guarded lobby and valet parking, a 82- Walking saltwater swimming pool and wine cellar, though most apartments likely have their own wine cellar. There are also private dining rooms, a library, a sports club with a juice bar, a basketball court, a golf simulator, and a children's playground. Not chic enough? In 2019, super chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten was selected to run a restaurant with 54 seats for guests only on the second floor.
More than two years ago, it was real estate collector hedge fund Ken Griffin that hit the headlines with the purchase of a four-story penthouse in 220 Central Park South for $ 238 million. Recently, however, another gigantic transaction has hit the headlines at 220 Central Park West: the sale of two units at 60 by China-based tech giant Alibaba. All in all, the apartment will be around 11,000 square meters.
Alibaba is China's largest technology company and its subsidiary The Ant Group is the largest fintech company in the world. Ant Group's Alipay, which has virtually replaced credit cards in China, is similar to Google Pay or PayPal, while Alibaba is the Chinese version of eBay and Amazon combined. The company sells about $ 1 trillion in goods annually, more than twice as much as Amazon, and its IPO in 2014 set a record for the world's largest public offering of shares at $ 25 billion.
Aside from making money as a tech tycoon, Tsai is very interested in owning sports teams. In September 2019, he became the owner of the Brooklyn Nets and the operating license for the Barclays Center. He also owns the WNBA's New York Liberty, the San Diego Seals, a boxing lacrosse team, and he heads the consortium that will bring a boxing lacrosse franchise to Las Vegas.
With net worth of approximately $ 10.3 billion in 2021, Tsai's primary residence in La Jolla, California is a 2.37-acre estate that he acquired for $ 10 million in 2010. He and his wife Clara Wu Tsai then tore down the existing house and built a more than 9,700 square meter residence. Tsai also rents an apartment in Hong Kong, reportedly for about $ 113,000 a month.
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