UPDATE, Wednesday July, 10, 2019, 7:22 p.m.: Fredrik Eklund has officially left the New York City rat race — at least as a home base.
The celebrity broker at Douglas Elliman packed up his family and traded his Downtown Manhattan apartment for a luxe-looking Beverly Hills home with sweeping views of Downtown Los Angeles, as he revealed in an Instagram post on Wednesday.
In a lengthy message, the broker, who rose to fame after being cast on “Million Dollar Listing New York,” said he and his husband and their two small children will now be permanently based on the West Coast. He will be getting more involved in the West Coast expansion of the 64-person team he leads with John Gomes. Gomes will remain in New York City.
“We got to the new house in Beverly Hills and ordered sushi by the pool watching the incredible sunset over the city below,” Eklund wrote in the Instagram post, about the move earlier this week. “Moving a family with toddlers isn’t easy, but spending more time in California while expanding the business here’s something we’ve talked about for years.”
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Yesterday we moved to Los Angeles. I was a bit emotional seeing the kids so excited to get on the flight. We got to the new house in Beverly Hills and ordered sushi by the pool watching the incredible sunset over the city below. Moving a family with toddlers isn’t easy, but spending more time in California while expanding the business here’s something we’ve talked about for years. You’ll be able to follow our journey on MDLNY this season. The kids and Derek will be here full time and I’ll be going back and forth between LA, NY and even Miami overseeing the teams. I guess I do love airplanes and travel lol. We’ve grown the team to 64 people between the 3 cities. We’ve had some really big, exciting hires lately and have no plans to stop growing. Today I land running with pitches and the first VIP Top Broker event for an epic new development I’m heading up sales at in West Hollywood – I’m honored to be part of it (more on that very soon). LA has some of the world’s most exciting new development projects coming – vertical living is finally happening here. I’m already back in NY next week. But you can imagine the butterflies I have right now: this weekend we’ll take the kids to the beach for the first time, I went hiking this morning. I’m so grateful for the warm welcome here – at the same time I want to make crystal clear that my business in NY is going to expand with me very present. NY is the city that welcomed me first and gave me the platform to grow the business that allowed me to fulfill a lifelong dream of also be in LA. John and Julia my partners and extended family have their feet firmly planted in NY with the incredible team there. As you probably can tell, I’m so excited to share all of this with you. Love /Freddy
In the post, Eklund called the move to L.A. a “lifelong dream.” Despite “butterflies,” he’s launched his new life “running” with a string of pitches and is even hosting a party for a new project he’s leading sales for in West Hollywood.
“LA has some of the world’s most exciting new development projects coming – vertical living is finally happening here,” he said.
The Eklund-Gomes team has been on an expansion tear of late. After receiving permission from Elliman head Howard Lorber, The Eklund-Gomes team has grown far beyond the 10-agent limit the brokerage typically imposes on those units.
Since receiving Lorber’s blessing, the team has opened its own 10,000-square-foot office at 936 Broadway in New York and last fall announced their expansion to L.A. At the time, it had 23 agents in New York City and was adding four agents on the West Coast.
According to The Real Deal’s annual broker rankings, which the Eklund-Gomes team did not participate in, the Elliman team closed $721 million in sales last year in Manhattan, Brooklyn and Queens.
When it comes to Eklund’s reception among local L.A. brokers, Josh Altman of Douglas Elliman and a star of “Million Dollar Listing Los Angeles” said he’s “happy to have him in our territory.”
“We’ve referred many deals together over the past years back and forth and not surprised he realized the west coast is the best coast,” he said. “[But] as far as anyone in the business being intimidated, last time I checked sharks are the top of the food chain…”
“If you’re going to have success in other markets you have to be there, which I think is why he’s moving there,” said Ryan Serhant of Nest Seekers International. Serhant, who co-stars on MDLNY with Eklund, opened an office in Los Angeles in 2015 and currently has three agents working in the city.
Serhant, 35, said a move to California was “not on my current horizon” but joked that in 10 years, when he’s closer to Eklund’s age, 42, he might change his mind.
Eklund also noted in his message to his 1.1 million Instagram followers that he’s not going all in on L.A. and will remain active across the cities where the team operates.
“I’ll be going back and forth between LA, NY and even Miami overseeing the teams. I guess I do love airplanes and travel lol,” he wrote.
Additional reporting by Natalie Hoberman
Editor’s Note: Updated with comment from Josh Altman and Ryan Serhant.