New Ultra Luxury Baseline

After several years of construction, and a redefining of multiple blocks of downtown Boston, both the Boston W Condos and the Clarendon Back Bay began closing on units located on lower floors of each building earlier this month.  The W and Clarendon join the Mandarin Oriental, 45 Province, and Battery Wharf as the newest flock of ultra-luxury large scale Boston condominium developments that were delivered in late 2008 and 2009.

Sales figures for both the W Boston and Clarendon Back Bay have been kept relatively quiet during pre-construction and finishing, and as time unfolds and the registry of deeds is updated, Bostonians will begin to see what price points are being paid to inhabit Boston’s latest luxury living accommodations.

What can be seen thus far, with approximately 5 units in each development being recorded as sold, is that average price points at a price per square foot level in the W and Clarendon at $820 and $990 respectively are significantly lower than the Mandarin Oriental fetched, and well off the average of units currently advertised in each building of $1,090 and $1,150 respectively.

Comparing early sales with other fully sold out buildings (such as the Mandarin) or other currently available units in the same building, may not be a fair comparison given that the majority of units recorded in each building thus far have been on lower floors of each development.  It has been relatively standard that prices typically rise $15K-$20K per floor as you climb towards the penthouse of a large-scale condo development.

With the sudden boost in market closing activity due to closings at the W Boston and Clarendon Back Bay during December 2009, and further closings expected during January, those watching statistics of the Boston condo market over the next several months should look at the numbers knowing that averages can be significantly and easily impacted by injecting just a few high-end price points into a sample.