Where Home Prices Start at $115 Million (The Wall Street Journal)
Oct. 29, 2015
To set the latest slate of trophy homes apart, developers are loading them up with every imaginable amenity. Designs for homes in the Park Bel Air call for IMAX movie theaters and master suites as large as 8,000 square feet with closets that include catwalks and built-in cameras for viewing outfits from multiple angles. Two of the homes will have race-car simulators. Gavin Brodin, who oversaw the renovation of the $85 million, 57,000-square-foot Spelling Manor, one of the priciest and largest homes ever sold in Los Angeles, is handling the design.
Paul Habibi, a professor at UCLA’s Ziman Center for Real Estate, says many high-end builders take a counterintuitive approach: The pricier the spec home, the more specialized, one-of-a-kind amenities. Developers hope that unique features will prompt one buyer to shell out big bucks.
“It’s uncharacteristic for how you usually sell,” he says, which is to design a home that would broadly appeal to buyers.