Real estate is all about how good you are at convincing pope to buy property by capturing what interests them the most. It could be that dreamy kitchen and a large closet, while for men, it could be the vast backyard to hold some barbecues with friends. Al Ad knew this when he purchased the Plaza Hotel in 2004, and just like any other businessman trying to make a quick profit, he hooked prospective buyers by promising heaven on earth. Therefore even though it was only a great concept that appealed to the buyers, they still coughed up millions to own a piece of the historic building. Tommy Hilfiger was not left behind in a rush to own an apartment in the Plaza, yet even before a year was over, he wanted to sell it. Here’s everything we know so far about Tommy Hilfiger’s apartment and probably why it took so long to sell it.
Investing in history
According to Vanity Fair, Alexa Lambert was in charge of marketing the yet-to-exist condominiums, and she confessed she has never worked that hard in her life. Therefore the prospective buyers were introduced to claw-foot bathtubs, rooms overlooking Central Park, and the loud noises of workers working tirelessly to fulfill Al Ad’s dream. Still, the model that Al has on mind was enough to lure Tommy Hilfiger into buying two apartments because he and his wife, Dee, loved the location. To the couple, the fact that they could see across the 59th Street Bridge and enjoy the different atmosphere at night that was facilitated by the lit buildings piqued their interests.
Therefore after parting with $25 million to buy two units at the top floor of the Plaza, Tommy and Dee further used $17 million to renovate the newly acquired investment and combined them into one penthouse. Tommy was proud of the history that the building had saying that The Beatles, Marilyn Monroe, and The Rolling Stone all could not resist staying at the hotel. Owning a piece of it became a priority, and they began turning it into a space of their own, Dee, for instance, insisted on having a French Bistro look which Tommy was not keen on having. However, with her eye for designing, Dee utilized black and white marble and tiles, black cabinets with a marble backsplash, and a marble and cherry island to come up with a kitchen that eventually turned into Tommy’s favorite spot in the entire apartment.
Besides the 10-foot ceiling and windows that gave them a spectacular view of Fifth Avenue from the living room, the apartment also has a reading nook at the back. The couple asked Hilary Knight to hand-paint the Eloise Room’s walls, housed in a dome where a dessert and coffee table sits. The four-bedroom mansion has three bedrooms decorated in lilac, nautical, and rock and roll themes. The master bedroom comprises a decorative fireplace, a private terrace, a crystal chandelier, a minibar, and two large walk-in closets. Dee had her glam room while the bathroom includes a glass-lined steam shower and deep soaking bath. Of course, the house would not be complete with a den which Home Stratosphere describes as the most modern room in the apartment since it has hidden TVs. Tommy’s office is next to the den, and part of its appeal is the family picture by Annie Liebowitz, and the walls have artistic pieces by Mick Jagger.
Why it took long to sell
According to the New York Post, Tommy and Dee tried selling the apartment for $50 million a few months after closing the deal on the apartment. Their attempt was unsuccessful, and the couple continued upgrading it such that by 2013 when they once again tried flipping it, the asking price was $80 million. Since then, Tommy kept slashing the price, going to $75 million, then $68.95 million and $58.9 Million in November 2016. Still, the discounted price was not enough to attract buyers, and it finally found a buyer in 2019, Terry Taylor, an automobile mogul who had to fork out $33.25 million.
Although we have heard of property taking long to sell, we are tempted to wonder why Tommy Hilfiger’s apartment took 11 years to get a buyer, and people had different views. One broker said that the hyper-personalized décor was unappealing for most people and added he would never decorate his own home as the fashion mogul had. Additionally, the property had been deemed unsellable because it lacked some attributes that a trophy property should have. The broker revealed that Tommy had found a buyer, but once the person realized that the living room did not overlook Central Park, the interest disappeared.
On the other hand, another experienced broker said it was a matter of time before one person realized the value of owning a plaza. Tommy said that although the Plaza had been devalued with time, his home was still unique, and he was only selling because he hardly stayed in it, seeing that his primary residence is in Greenwich, and he has homes in Mustique and Palm Beach. He said he was comfortable retaining it as one of his investments if he did not find a buyer, but given that he sold it for much less than he spent, it is clear that Tommy was desperate to let it go.
Celebrities and real estate
Unlike Tommy Hilfiger, who should probably stick to what he knows best-fashion- other celebrities have proven they can be jacks of all trades. Besides being an actor and politician, Arnold Schwarzenegger has made lucrative profits in the real estate industry. He made his fortune in real estate because he ventured into the industry in 1970 and started making 300% profits on properties he had bought. Kylie Jenner has also been successful in real estate, and her ability to renovate and remodel has facilitated her fortune to grow bigger. Others have been as unfortunate as Tommy; Katy Perry lost a million dollars trying to flip her $6.5 million home, whereas Michael Jordan also had to keep slashing the price of his $29 million home to get a buyer.
Photos via Top Ten Real Estate Deals