Manhattan living involves being surrounded by actors, industry leaders, Russian oligarchs, billionaire foreign ministers, baronesses, and influential members of the media. However, there is more to owning luxury real estate in New York than simply celebrity-spotting. Unlike Hollywood stars locked away in Malibu mansions, the billionaires of Manhattan merge, undisturbed, on the sidewalks of Fifth Avenue. They share your lobbies, parks, and schools. They are the people in your neighborhood, and you can get to know them, with time.
Who are some of the billionaires in Manhattan’s wealthiest neighborhoods? With a massive influx of foreign capital, they are neither as rare, nor as reclusive as they once were. Many of the billionaires who bought seven of the top 11 floors of One 57 kept their identities a secret for some time. Lately, however, a few names have been revealed to the media. Two of them are known to be close friends, fashion tycoons Lawrence S. Stroll, of Quebec, and Silas K. F. Chou, a native of Hong Kong. Just around the corner, on 22 E. 71st Street, the prime minister of Qatar is moving in, along with his fifteen children. Down the street, Steve Wynn has bought his multi-million dollar penthouse. The Russian oligarch owner of the $88 million dollar penthouse enjoys the same warm breeze as the rest of Manhattan in sunny Central Park.
In social psychology there is a phenomenon called residential propinquity. It is based on theories of interpersonal attraction. According to the studies, the closer your physical proximity to someone, and the more often you see them, the more likely you are to form a bond with them. It could be a friendship. It could be a romantic relationship. For instance, those living on the same floor have a higher propinquity than those on opposite floors. Studies on propinquity have also found that those who live closer to stairways and elevators have more friends than those living further away from the common meeting places. It has to do with the mere exposure effect and the idea that the more you see someone else, the greater your chance of getting to know them, and ultimately liking each other.
When you own luxury real estate in New York, you are part of a select club of integrated high net worth individuals. These billionaires can afford private islands, and many of them do, but they live New York for the same reason as you, to experience the parks, shows, art, and most of all, the people, in the greatest city that the world has to offer. These are the industry leaders and tycoons you rub shoulders with when you set your sights on the world’s most impressive apartments. By proximity alone, there will be casual encounters with the men and women who normally grant an audience to only the most esteemed global leaders. Everywhere you turn you will find powerful business connections, and opportunity, if you take it.
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