Top 3 Most Ridiculously Expensive Home Sales of 2011

Sure, the past year was been tough for real estate, but it seems like the rich and famous of the world did more than okay in that department- as evidenced by so many popular stories of home prices gone wild. For while 2011 ushered in some of the saddest tales of distressed properties this country has ever seen—and a whole lot of them at that—on the other end of the spectrum, we saw some the most expensive real estate transactions in history. As in ever. And so, in tribute to record-breaking home sales of 2011, ZipCode brings you...

Top 3 Most Ridiculously Expensive Home Sales of 2011 (and Honorable Mentions)

1. The year’s most expensive single home purchase was that of Palo Alto, CA mansion “Loire Chateau.” This 25,000 square foot beauty sold for a staggering $100 million in March of 2011, when Russian billionaire Yuri Millner bought it-- reportedly not for primary residence, but rather for use when he’s visiting the Silicon Valley. A swell crash pad, indeed.



2. In Manhattan, the year’s 2nd most expensive transaction made history when a 22-year old Russian heiress purchased a penthouse condo at 115 Central Park West. Ekaterina Rybolovleva paid full asking for this 6,744-square-foot apartment, $88 million: this price works out to about $13,000 per square foot, the highest ever recorded-- for any home-- in the Big Apple’s pricey history. More eye popping still, the seller’s profit: reports the condo previously belonged to "former Citigroup chairman Sandy Weill, who purchased it with his wife in 2007 for $43.7 million"…less than half what it sold for. And if your eyes are still in your head at this point, hold on to them, because the new owner only plans to stay in the place while she’s “in school”- basically then this is the world’s most overpriced dorm room.



3. And finally, coming in 3rd is the sale of the The Spelling Manor a home that made history when it listed at $150 million – the most expensive single-family home ever on the American MLS. To our eyes, the mansion was a bit over the top, with its redundancy of riches and questionable design esthetic (Candy Spelling herself takes credit for the 56,500-square foot Neo/French/Italianate/Edwardian behemoth and all its pricey, pink interiors). Still, someone ended up wanting it enough to buy it, this time another 22-year old heiress, this time from the UK. In the end, Petra Ecclestone paid $85 million, which while pricey indeed, is still a 43% discount. Not that she needed it, really: This place, like our most expensive purchase, will not even be the primary home of its new owner, since Petra spends much of her time in London. No word if she will be redecorating.


Additional wildly expensive honorable mentions for 2011:

  • The Farralone property, former playground of the Rat Pack and reportedly where John F. Kennedy rendezvoused with Marilyn Monroe, went on the market for $12.5 million.


The most expensive Miami Beach, FL condo sale, reportedly of all time, took place in 2011 too: Here one very lucky buyer dropped $21.5 million for this gorgeous Asiatic penthouse, formerly owned by Netscape founder, Jim Clark.


How Can 2012 Top all This!?

With all these record-setting purchases, 2012 has some big, expensive shoes to fill....