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Top-5 Things The Sale of the Four Seasons Penthouse Tells Us

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In case you missed it, Menkes has confirmed that the penthouse at the Four Seasons in Yorkville has sold to an international buyer. 8000+ square feet for $28M. So what does the sale of the most expensive apartment in Canadian history tell us about the condo market in Toronto? I think it says a few key things:

  1. Four Seasons is King. By setting such a massive record that will likely not be surpassed for possibly 10 years or more, The Four Seasons brand is now clearly the number one luxury condo-hotel in Toronto. I often talk about the “Big Four” of Toronto condo-hotels: The Ritz-Carlton, Shangri-La, Trump Tower, and The Four Seasons. The penthouse sale once again solidifies The Four Seasons as the most prestigious brand in this sub-market.
  2. Yorkville is King. As much as there are many great streets, intersections, and neighbourhoods in Toronto, this sale reminds us that Yorkville is still #1 in the eyes of the truly elite buyers.
  3. Toronto is King. This could not happen in any other city in Canada. Vancouver, for all its high-priced real estate, has (to my knowledge) never seen a condo sale north of $22M. Montreal? Forget about it. The penthouse of the Ritz in Montreal sold for $15M. Toronto is the best market in Canada to invest in real estate and we should be proud.
  4. Expect other Dominoes to Fall in 2011. I have a feeling the other condos on the market in the $10M+ range will sell this year. No one likes to be the first to set a new price precedent, but once it is set, similar properties tend to move quickly. Suddenly the penthouse at Aura at 13,000 square feet is looking like a bargain at $17M…
  5. No more complaining about $600 per square foot! With this property selling at over $3000 per square foot, Toronto buyers need to see this as a signpost for the future of Toronto. Those who are stuck in the mindset that anything over $600 per square foot is ‘too high’ or irrational may be right, but they need to consider the overall trajectory of the market as well.

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