What do Disney, Copa América and Hugh Hefner have in common? They’re stealing headlines from news dominator Donald Trump. Theme parks, celebrities, real estate, hotels and boutique retailers are making beautiful noise. Here are notable properties worthy of our attention.
Shanghai Disney Resort Opens
Forecasts suggest Shanghai Disney Resort could become the world’s most visited theme park, attracting as many as 50 million annual guests. China’s new attraction is a revised version America’s Disney kingdoms where happiness rules and gardens bloom. “Main Street USA” is renamed “Mickey Avenue,” a Chinese zodiac-themed garden flaunts Disney characters, a Tarzan musical features Chinese acrobats, a Lion King production plays in Mandarin, and the Wandering Moon Teahouse showcases traditional Chinese architecture in homage to the nation’s famous wandering poets.
Trump Turnberry, Scotland
Donald Trump’s redeveloped 800-acre Turnberry golf resort in Ayrshire re-opened in grand style—highlighted by its historic Alisa golf course, a luxurious 132-room hotel, lodge apartments, kilted staff, a reimagined clubhouse, a distinctive lighthouse (with four-person suite), oceanside cliffs, gorgeous sunsets, and a world-class Par 3 Ninth Hole along Scotland’s southwest coast. Trump’s goal is to host The Open Championship, as the course has done four times prior—most famously in 1977, and most recently in 2009.
Airbnb’s Copa América Mansion In Beverly Hills
Neymar Jr.’s Brazil team lost to Peru in the Copa América’s 100th anniversary soccer tournament, but this L.A. rental proves he’s still a winner. Courtesy of Airbnb and a reported $9,300 a night, the superstar footballer and his entourage scored an über exclusive, 22,000-square-foot Beverly Hills mega mansion—a seven bedroom, 12 bathroom party palace. Inspired by Versailles’ Le Petit Trianon, the estate boasts a pool, patioed Jacuzzi, sauna, tennis courts, grand fountains, movie theater, wine cellar, chef’s kitchen, and maid, butler and chauffeur service. Goal!
Playboy Mansion Sold
The Playboy Mansion, Hugh Hefner’s 22,000-square-foot Holmby Hills party house of sin, was sold to his neighbor, private equity businessman and Hostess Twinkies owner Daren Metropoulos for a reported $105 million (it listed for $200 million). The record L.A. residential sale had one condition—the pajamaed 90-year-old Playboy founder can stay in the 29-room Gothic Tudor manor for life (sparing him from the 55-and-over condo downgrade). Metropoulos plans to combine the two estates into one 7.3-acre complex.
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Jackie Kennedy’s D.C. Mansion
The 6,258-square-foot Georgetown mansion once owned by former first lady Jackie Kennedy (and subsequent owners 1951 Miss America Yolanda Betbeze Fox , and New Republic publisher/KGB spy Michael Straight) hit the Washington, D.C. market for $10 million. Following President John F. Kennedy’s assassination, Jackie bought the seven bedroom, six bathroom home, expecting to lead a private life that never materialized. After an extensive remodel by famed designer Billy Baldwin, Kennedy and her children abruptly ditched their red-bricked D.C. digs for New York in 1964, exchanging a view of the Potomac for Big Apple skyscrapers. Washington Fine Properties is handling the sale.
50 United Nations Plaza Penthouse
Norman Foster’s nearly 10,000-square-foot penthouse duplex with the birds-eye infinity edge pool is set for a flood of offers at $70 million. Crowning the architect’s first U.S. residential tower, the four bedroom penthouse is fully loaded with a staff quarters, elevator, 525-square-foot terrace, 75-foot-wide main living room, handcrafted stainless steel floating staircase, and panoramic windows boasting views of the East River, Empire State Building, and U.N. headquarters. Completed in 2015, 50 United Nations Plaza was developed by Zeckendorf Development and Global Holdings which has direct family ties to United Nations founders.
Amityville House For Sale
The notorious house from classic horror film, The Amityville Horror is back on the market for $850,000. The attractive six-bedroom, 3,600-square-foot Dutch Colonial with the gambrel roof has a ghastly past—a gruesome 1974 mass murder and bloodcurdling paranormal activity (which is also featured in current horror film The Conjuring 2) . But beauty is in the eye of the brave beholder. The original 1979 Amityville movie’s eerie commentary on the quarter-acre house (with boat slip) at 108 Ocean Drive stated, “ Eighty thousand dollars? It may as well be eight hundred thousand dollars. ” Prescient, thanks to inflation plus a $50,000 extra creepy poltergeist legacy—a real estate broker’s nightmare.
Hard Rock Hotel NYC
A new 445-room Hard Rock Hotel New York will headline Times Square in 2019, demoting singing “Naked Cowboy” to an opening act. A partnership with Extell, the music-infused hotel on Music Row’s footprint of former live clubs, instrument stores, and trail of elite rockers Jimi Hendrix and The Rolling Stones) will boast iconic memorabilia, live music, underground speakeasy, swank tavern, rhythmic spa treatments, “Body Rock” gym, and Fender guitar and DJ-equipment rental for in-room jam sessions (hopefully soundproofed). London rocks next.
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Ben Stiller’s Greenwich Village Apartment
Zoolander and Meet the Parents star Ben Stiller snatched up a “ridiculously good looking” West Village high-rise apartment with enviable Hudson River views for $15.3 million. The modern 3,400-square-foot, three-bedroom home basks in panoramic glass windows, a sleek walnut-and-white marble eat-in kitchen, luxury appliances and en suite bathrooms—secured via Douglas Elliman listing agent Raphael DeNiro, son of actor Robert (Stiller’s Meet the Parents co-star). Which means Stiller sealed the deal via his imaginary brother-in-law through marriage through film.
Miami’s Beach House 8
Beach House 8 sounds like a summer share reality show, but it’s way more exclusive than that. It’s actually Arquitectonica’s 10-story, eight-unit boutique condominium opening this August in Miami Beach’s Faena District. Eight lucky residents will live large, enjoying the private terraces and modern aesthetics of these staggered ocean view homes—architecturally described by co-founding principal Bernardo Fort-Brescia as “a hillside village, with houses hanging off the cliff and terraces stepping back, stacked one on top of another.” In this condominium, eight is enough.
Waldorf-Astoria Hotel Overhaul
The landmark Waldorf Astoria New York is due for a major makeover. Like The Plaza Hotel from 2005 to 2008, the historic hotel’s new owner (China’s Angbang Insurance Group) plans to gut and refurbish the historic hotel—closing it down for three years to convert about 1,100 rooms into private luxury condos. Upgraded luxury hotel rooms and suites will comprise the remaining 300 to 500 rooms when the estimated $1 billion-plus project is completed.
Lake Tahoe’s Mountainside at Northstar
From the architects who gave us the Apple Store and Pixar Animation Studios, comes Mountainside at Northstar, Lake Tahoe’s exclusive on-mountain community of contemporary ski-in/ski-out residences fresh on the market. Architecture firm Bohlin Cywinski Jackson’s minimalist, energy-smart alpine residences ($3.9 million) and townhouses (around $2 million and up) reinterpret the concept of a mountain dwelling—via open interiors, natural woods, floor-to-ceiling windows and integrated outdoor spaces for active families.
John Barret Bond Street Salon
Rubber-necking celebrities is old sport, but John Barret’s highly stylized NYC Bond Street salon ups the eye-candy ante via branded luxury and celeb-centric lifestyle environs. This includes sleek Daniel Romualdez interiors, famous wall portraits, Assouline coffee table books, vintage Rolex watches, and exclusive salon rights to Tom Ford’s cosmetics and fragrances—all gorgeous conditioners while awaiting your appointment.