With its 40 stories and monthly rents of as much as $25,000, a new Los Angeles apartment tower is reaching Manhattan’s heights. And its amenities may make New Yorkers jealous: a chauffeur-driven Rolls-Royce, in-house Botox and your latte brewed to order before you even ask for it.
In a city known for sprawling mansions, the 283-unit Ten Thousand, scheduled to open in January on the border of Century City and Beverly Hills, is testing the market for high-end living with high-rise views. It follows the success of the nearby 8500 Burton Way, which opened almost four years ago as one of the city’s first ultra-luxury rental buildings and is now fully leased with rents of $12,000 to $40,000 a month.
“Our sense, based on the reception we’ve got, is that this market is deep,” said Roman Speron, vice president at Crescent Heights, which is developing Ten Thousand. Wealthy renters “just don’t want to take care of the hassles that everyday life brings, and they want someone else to take care of it for them.”
While the $8,500 starting rent at Ten Thousand isn’t unheard of in New York, it’s uncommon in Los Angeles, where a mortgage payment of that amount could pay for a $2.1 million villa with six bedrooms and guesthouse in the Hollywood Hills. But for a wealthy millennial, an international visitor or a bicoastal executive, Ten Thousand’s two- and three-bedroom rentals provide an alternative to a five-star hotel or buying a mansion and hiring a team of servants. And local traffic, now the worst in the U.S., has made proximity to the area’s shops, dining and jobs a luxury.
Almost a quarter of renters in Los Angeles have the credit scores and incomes necessary to buy a home, but are leasing instead, according to a study released Thursday by Zillow. The real estate website ranked the city fourth in the U.S. for tenants qualified to be homeowners.
The glass-and-concrete Ten Thousand building rises above Santa Monica Boulevard, a thoroughfare that connects Hollywood and the Pacific Ocean. While it sits in a car-heavy zone where pedestrians are rarely seen, the building is a 15-minute walk to the luxury boutiques of Rodeo Drive and just blocks from Century City’s office towers and its Westfield shopping mall.
Los Angeles, known internationally for its sprawl, is building up. Developers have transformed the city’s downtown into an area with 50,000-plus residents, more than double the number in 2000, through ground-up construction and conversions. Regional planners also are encouraging more high-rise development along L.A.’s growing subway and light-rail lines. (Modern high-rises are designed to withstand earthquakes, using concrete with metal bars that resist crushing and stretch to absorb a temblor’s energy.) Still, the Ten Thousand tower may be more an outlier than symbol of a trend, said D.J. Waldie, author of “Holy Land: A Suburban Memoir” and writer of essays on urban and suburban Southern California.
“Broadly speaking, the patterns of development in L.A. suggest a more vertical city,” Waldie said in an interview. “This building, though, seems aimed at a slice of the 1 percent that don’t have much of a connection to the rest of Los Angeles. This building does seem like an island unto itself.”