Inside the Waldorf Astoria’s condo conversion

Unit sales are set to kick off next year

Luxury buyers will soon be able to own a pad in the famed Waldorf Astoria.

Chinese developer Anbang Insurance Group is pouring $1 billion into converting the 47-story, hotel into condominiums, according to the Wall Street Journal. And it’s banking on the hotel’s history — of housing presidents, royals and celebrities — to draw in deals.

Anbang acquired the iconic Park Avenue building in 2015 for $1.95 billion, and the hotel has been closed since 2017. The developer is hoping to attract foreign buyers looking for a pied-à-terre. The developer also is focusing on restoring the hotel to its original state, by bringing back the grand ballroom and refurbishing the iconic, four-faced Waldorf Astoria lobby clock.

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Paris-based architect and designer Jean-Louis Deniot is behind the vision for the apartment and common areas. Extra luxuries for residents will include a spa and 82-foot lap pool, not to mention the hotel’s amenities.

There will be 375 hotel rooms and 375 condo units. Pricing for studios will start at around $1.7 million, or roughly $2,500 to $3,000 a square foot, senior sales director Dan Tubb told the Journal. (Douglas Elliman Development Marketing is leading sales.)

But Manhattan’s condo market has been sluggish, and is contending with new mansion taxes and waning interest from foreign buyers.

“In times of uncertainty, people gravitate toward something that feels certain and constant,” said Elliman’s Susan de Franca. [WSJ] — Mary Diduch