The last real estate news Your Mama and the children heard about Sheikh Hamad bin Jassim bin Jaber Al Thani—otherwise known as the Prime Minister of Qatar—his $31,500,000 overbid to purchase two of deceased copper heiress Hugette Clark’s time capsule-like co-operative apartments at 907 Fifth Avenue was resoundingly rejected.
The board at 907, so the story went, was concerned the mustachioed sheik’s diplomatic immunity could make it impossible to seek legal recourse in the unlikely event the astronomically rich statesman ever failed to pay his monthly common charges. They were additional rumbles and reports about the board’s—probably legitimate—concerns over the number of people who might occupy the premises at any given time; The sheikh has 2 wives, 15 children and an extensive, ever-present entourage that includes an armed security detail.
Anyhoo, now word comes down the gossip grapevine (via the New York Post) that the lavish-livin’ sheikh is the spendy mystery buyer who—as previously reported here, there and everywhere in mid-May (2012)—agreed to cough up more than $90,000,000 for a duplex penthouse atop the not-yet-completed, Christian de Portzamparc-designed One57 tower in Midtown Manhattan.
Not too many details have been made public about the two-floor penthouse that has sky-high, 360-degree Central Park and city views. The penthouse is reported to occupy the entire 89th and 90th floors of the 1,000 foot tall tower, measure 10,923 square feet and feature, according to the Post‘s report, “a ‘grand salon,’ a large mezzanine, four fireplaces, floor-to-ceiling windows, at least five bedrooms, and motorized window shades.” We like—nay,, we l.o.v.e. the motorized window shades but ninety-some million damn clams and not a single square foot of private outdoor space from which to smoke an apés dinner doobie or take in the head-swimming view al fresco? Uh, no thanks.
Naturally, the 50-something year old sheikh owns several other pricey properties around the world including, no doubt, a college campus-sized compound in his home country of Qatar. Like many Middle Eastern sheikhs and potentates, Mister al-Thani maintains a base in London where he owns a sprawling penthouse pad at the stupefyingly expensive One Hyde Park complex in London’s natty and nabob-y Knightsbridge nabe.
More than one of Your Mama’s better connected informants have told us the sheikh owns an estate in the same gated Los Angeles enclave where action star turned governator Arnold Schwarzenegger, German supermodel turned reality tee-vee mogul Heidi Klum, and professional pig skin tosser Tom Brady and his (possibly) preggers again Brazilian supermodel wife Giselle Bundchen all maintain baronial mansions.
In late 2010 the sheikh paid L.A.-based billionaire Tom Gores $34,500,000 for 8-plus prime (and vacant) acres on a very prominent promontory above the Bel-Air Country Club where—Your Mama imagines—he plans to erect a massive, opulent and high-maintenance residential monument to his wealth that he’ll probably only use a few weeks a year. Such are the real estate ways of the world’s super rich.
In addition to his myriad of stationary residences around the world, the globe-trotting sheikh also keeps a 437 foot long, navy blue-hulled boat called Al Mirqab said to have a soaring, four-story main staircase with hand-cut crystal panels and a glass sculpture by American artist Dale Chihuly.
Your Mama needs a nerve pill chased with a gin & tonic to contemplate the cost to fill the gas tanks of a ship-sized pleasure boat nearly as long as 1.5 football fields. We’d bet both our still-kicking long-bodied bitches Linda and Beverly that it’s way more than Your Mama and The Dr. Cooter combined have ever earned in an entire year.
artist renderings of One57: Extell Development Company (via One57.com)