Luis Ortiz is back

The Douglas Elliman broker starred on Bravo's reality TV show before quitting real estate in 2016

Luis. D. Ortiz (Credit: Bravo)
Luis Ortiz (Credit: Bravo)

Luis Ortiz, the Douglas Elliman broker who gained fame for his starring role on Bravo’s reality TV show “Million Dollar Listing New York,” has returned to real estate.

Bravo released the Season 8 trailer for its reality real estate show earlier this week. In it, Ortiz appears in a bright red sweater, makes a rock ‘n’ roll salute, and announces to the camera, “I’m back!”

The broker, who appeared alongside Nest Seekers International’s Ryan Serhant and Elliman’s Fredrik Eklund, made a name for himself by going to extreme lengths for clients. Some of his on-camera antics included Photoshopping photos of a property, which landed him in hot water with the New York Department of State after it aired. He also wound up getting fired from Keller Williams NYC, the brokerage he was with when he first began filming MDLNY, due to his involvement in the show back in 2013. “‘At no fault of Luis’, the sensationalism of reality TV is not in line with the Keller Williams’ NYC brand,” the brokerage said at the time. He landed at Elliman.

But, a few years later in 2016, Ortiz decided to pull the plug on his TV persona and the real estate business. In a parting interview he filmed with Bravo in July of that year he said, “I’m going to travel to Europe by myself. I’m going to go on a little journey, find myself a little bit more, and then come back strong.”

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He explained that brokering high-end home deals wasn’t making him happy and, though he was vague on his plans beyond traveling, he want to “explore” television.

On his 30th birthday, he announced that he had joined Empire Capital Holdings, a real estate investment firm. It’s unclear if he raised money for deals.

Fast-forward about three years and he’s suddenly back on MDLNY for its eighth season, which is slated to air Aug. 1. He has rejoined his Douglas Elliman team with his “right hand” Ronita Kalra and two other agents.

Ortiz did not respond to requests for comment, but his image is back in his co-stars’ Instagram feeds and his profile is back on Elliman’s website.

Ortiz and Kalra’s current listings include a one-bedroom co-op at the Dakota asking $1.29 million and a Nomad co-op that was asking $2.9 million, which the brokerage’s website claims is in contract.