Still, Scott says that current Covid-19 related volatility could work in the penthouse’s favor. “New Zealand has become a consideration for some people,” she says. “Certainly, expats are looking back at New Zealand and saying, ‘Perhaps I should come back and bring my family.’” (The country pursued an aggressive elimination strategy that seems to have worked. Today, new daily infection numbers are in the single digits and on May 11, the government announced it would exit its seven-week lockdown.)

Moreover, the penthouse holds a trump card: Even though New Zealand law says foreign buyers must obtain Overseas Investment Office approval before buying a house, the developer says that the penthouse (along with the rest of the units in the Pacifica) is exempt from that restriction. The building was already under construction when the law was enacted. “Hengyi was therefore able to apply for [...] and be granted an exemption from these restrictions,” Scott wrote in a follow-up email.

Warm Shell
Currently, the penthouse is a “warm shell,” meaning its exterior is in place but its interior is unfinished. Should a buyer wish to buy the apartment as is, the price would be about NZ$35 million. Scott says that this is the most likely scenario. “A warm shell provides the most flexibility in what a range of purchasers might hope to achieve,” she says. “They wouldn’t have to come in and try to redo something, which in itself can be quite wasteful.”

Should a buyer prefer the finished product, though, the developer has a plan in place. The proposed floor plan includes a lower level with an open concept dining room, living room, kitchen, and lounge. (Not to worry: There’s a closed-off “butler’s kitchen,” where the real work can be done.) That level also has a conservatory, media room, office and “board room,” and library.

On the second floor are five bedrooms, including a master suite that takes up a full corner of the building. The upstairs floor plan calls for its own gym, sauna, and spa.

Aside from the sheer space, Scott says the building’s position overlooking the Hauraki Gulf  is “absolutely stunning.” The penthouse might become the most expensive sale in New Zealand, she says, “but if you compare our offering globally to apartments of a similar ilk in global cities, it’s very well-priced.”

The finished apartment—or even the empty shell—“is certainly consistent with what a lot of people expect,” she says.

This article was provided by Bloomberg News.

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