Which one would you choose?By Maya Kachroo-Levine on August 21, 2020
The title of most expensive home in the U.S. is a tough one to claim, between inflation, surging real estate prices that, in major cities, persist even through market downturns, and the sheer status some of these stunning properties have now garnered. These over-the-top homes feature private beaches, golf courses, tennis courts, and 75-foot swimming pools. Hundreds of millions of dollars can secure luxury buyers coveted acreage in high-demand neighborhoods and every amenity they could dream of. And most of these homes are bought outright in cash—by celebrities, tech moguls, or real estate tycoons worth billions.
Here, a selection of the most expensive homes ever sold in the United States.
In January 2019, this penthouse overlooking Central Park claimed the record for most expensive home ever sold in the U.S. It takes up the 50th, 51st, 52nd, and 53rd floors of 220 Central Park South and was purchased by billionaire Ken Griffin, a hedge-fund manager whose net worth is about $10 billion. Griffin bought the four floors unfinished and has no doubt been customizing his private section of this residential Manhattan tower since January 2019. A real estate mogul, Griffin has spent approximately $700 million on personal real estate since 2015.
This Beverly Hills compound has 13,000-square-feet of space and sold in February 2020 for $165 million—talk about a brilliant investment in personal sanity to make right before California’s COVID-19 lockdown the next month. The estate was purchased by Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, but the property was designed in the ‘30s for famed Warner Bros. executive Jack Warner. The 10-acre property with a nine-hole golf course had increased in value by more than 300% since former owner David Geffen purchased it for $47.5 million back in 1990.
When the news of the sale of this 18-acre East Hampton estate broke in May 2014, it was the most expensive house sold in the United States. There was some debate as to the actual final sale price of the property—it was originally reported at $147 million. The mansion was purchased by hedge-fund manager Barry Rosenstein, but apart from the fact that this idyllic Hamptons estate is reported to be gorgeous, little is known about the property.
In November 2012, owner of various sports franchises and noted real estate billionaire Stan Kroenke paid cash for Broken O Ranch, which is a fully operational 124,000-acre ranch. The home on this sprawling parcel of land is a 10,000-square-foot mansion that looks out toward the Rocky Mountains. Because there is revenue-generating production happening at Broken O Ranch—grain and hay production and thousands of cows on property—this could also be considered commercial real estate rather than a private home. Really, it seems to be both. The owner himself is estimated to be worth $8.3 billion, according to Forbes.
Greenwich estates are often home to media moguls because they’re central to broadcast hubs in Connecticut and New York. But frankly, apart from speculation, we have little insight into the owner of this 50-acre estate, which features a 15,000-square-foot home and a 1,800-foot long driveway. The property, built in 1898, has only had three owners in the last 122 years. It features tennis courts, green houses, an apple orchard, an expansive pool and hot tub that looks out over the Long Island Sound, and 4,000 feet of waterfront and private beach.
On this nine-acre estate in Woodside—prime Silicon Valley real estate—sits a 8,900-square-foot private home built in 2005. It sold to an anonymous buyer in 2012 for $117,500,000. That buyer is rumored to be founder and CEO of SoftBank Masayoshi Son, but it’s still never been confirmed. Not much has been reported about the amenities and architectural feats that lie within this Silicon Valley compound, other than that it offers 360-degree views of the surrounding Woodside Mountains.
The oceanfront estate, called La Follia, sits on South Ocean Boulevard in Palm Beach. With 13 bedrooms, a stretch of private beach, a boat dock, and manicured gardens, it is arguably the most lavish beach home in Florida—and possibly in the country. La Follia has a gorgeous pool and cabana, a fitness center, and orchards. It once belonged to famed Broadway producer Terry Allen Kramer and is down the street from another one of Ken Griffin’s notable properties.