Citadel, LLC’s founder Ken Griffin closed on the $238-M penthouse at 220 Central Park South,a Citadel spokeswoman said. The purchase price makes it America’s most-expensive home ever.
Earlier this month, he paid about $122-M for a 200-year-old home that overlooks London’s St. James’s Park, a short walk from Buckingham Palace.
The luxury condo tower in New York was built by Vornado Realty Trust (NYSE:VNO), which said in October it was approaching 85% sold, with 26 full-floor units in contract. The Robert A.M. Stern-designed project faces the southern entrance to Central Park, with most of the 118 units offering unobstructed views. Griffin’s apartment is about 24,000 sqf. The deal was reported earlier Wednesday.
Citadel has signed a lease to anchor a skyscraper at 425 Park Ave, about a mile from Griffin’s new apartment. The office building, developed by L&L Holding Co. and designed by Norman Foster, topped out last month. It’s supposed to be completed in 2020, and Citadel will take about 331,800 sqf on 16 floors including the Penthouse.
Mr. Griffin’s purchase is well more than 2X the prior record for a residential sale in Manhattan, which was $100.5-M for the Penthouse at One57. That deal was completed in Y 2014. Appetites for Manhattan’s ultra-luxury homes have since waned. A few blocks away from One57, a buyer purchased 3 apartments near the Top of the 96-story tower at 432 Park Ave. for a combined $91.1-M, in a deal that closed in December 2017.
A Vornado spokesman declined to comment, as did Corcoran Group who represented Vornado.
Tal Alexander, who along with his brother Oren represented Mr. Griffin, also did not comment.
Mr. Griffin, 50 anni, founded Citadel in Y 1990, started trading convertible bonds from his dorm room at Harvard University. The firm today manages $28-B with offices around the world. Mr. Griffin, who has a $9.6-B fortune, is the richest person from Illinois in a ranking of the world’s 500 wealthiest people.
He already owned hundreds of millions of dollars worth of real estate in New York and Chicago. His shopping spree over the past few years included $30-M for 2 floors of the Waldorf Astoria hotel in Chicago and a Miami Beach Penthouse for $60-M.
In Y 2009, Griffin paid $40-M for an apartment at 820 Fifth Ave., at 63rd Street, in New York, buying the 12th-floor unit from philanthropist Lily Safra, widow of banker Edmond Safra.
Mr. Griffin also has a history of breaking records in the art world. In 2016, he bought works by Jackson Pollock and Willem de Kooning from David Geffen’s foundation for about $500-M.