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Billionaire Investor Thomas Barrack Jr. Buys $15.5M Aspen Ski Resort Home

The five-bedroom Colorado house boasts mountain and valley views

Thomas Barrack Jr. has purchased a home in Aspen, Colorado, for $15.5 million.

Thomas Barrack Jr., a billionaire real estate investor and one of President Donald Trump’s closest friends, has purchased a $15.5-million palatial home in Aspen, Colorado, just in time for peak ski season.

Mr. Barrack Jr., 70, chairman and CEO of Los Angeles-based Colony Northstar, which manages $57 billion in assets, closed the deal in late November, per property records filed with the county clerk’s office last week.

Nestled on four acres on Eagle Park Drive, a secluded and prestigious address only minutes from downtown Aspen, the home encompasses 11,312 square feet of interior living space, featuring five bedrooms, six bathrooms and two half-bathrooms.

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The residence comes with wraparound verandas, stone-paved terraces, a pool with hot tub and views of Mount Sopris and the Owl Creek Valley, according to a previous listing with Carrie Wells of Coldwell Banker Mason Morse Real Estate.

Mr. Barrack Jr. was represented by Chris Souki, also of Coldwell Banker Mason Morse Real Estate.

Both brokers, as well as Mr. Barrack Jr. declined to comment.

The home, which was owned by a member of the Stuart family, of Carnation Dairy fame, for almost two decades, was first listed for $17.95 million in July 2016. The price was dropped to $16.95 million this August, listing history on Realtor.com shows.

Mr. Barrack Jr., known for managing commercial real estate and distressed debt-focused funds, made another personal residential move earlier this year. He sold his Santa Monica, California home for $24.25 million in an off-market deal.

He has an estimated net worth of $1 billion, according to Forbes.

MORE: Venetian-Style Estate in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, Asks $39M

As one of the oldest and closest friends to Mr. Trump, Mr. Barrack served as a senior adviser to Trump’s campaign and chairman of his inaugural committee. But he reportedly declined a formal role in the Trump administration.

The posh ski report town of Aspen has seen a couple of big-ticket sales this year. In June, Lachlan Murdoch, co-chairman of News Corp., which owns Dow Jones & Co., publisher of Mansion Global, paid $29 million for an estate on Buttermilk Mountain.

In February, a 14,000-square-foot house, asking $32 million, changed hands for $24.4 million.

In terms of closed sales, Aspen ranked No. 37 in the most expensive markets in the U.S. Half of the homes there sold for $2 million and above in 2017, according to a latest PropertyShark analysis.

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Actress Suzanne Somers Puts Unusual Palm Springs Compound Up for Auction

The ‘Three’s Company’ actress and her husband Alan Hamel own the property, which includes five villas clustered a few steps away from each other.

After years of trying to sell their unusual Palm Springs, Calif. compound, actress Suzanne Somers and her husband Alan Hamel are auctioning off the multilevel hillside property.

The “Three’s Company” actress and Mr. Hamel, a producer, listed the property several times in the past decade, with prices ranging from $12.9 million to $35 million. About a month ago it was listed for $14.5 million with Scott Lyle of Douglas Elliman Real Estate. “It just wasn’t happening,” Mr. Hamel said of the decision to go to auction. The property will sell without reserve through Concierge Auctions January 31st.

Located in the Mesa neighborhood just outside downtown Palm Springs, the property sits on about 73 acres and includes five villas built at various levels on the hillside and reachable by a funicular. There are eight bedrooms spread across the different villas, which are clustered a few steps away from each other on the hillside. “It’s like a little French village,” Mr. Hamel said. Parts of the compound were originally built roughly 100 years ago, he said, but the couple has expanded and renovated it over the years. The living space of the villas combines to approximately 7,300 square feet.

MORE: $38M Los Angeles Spec House, Designed by Lenny Kravitz, Pays Homage to Mid-Century Modernism

The ‘Three’s Company’ actress and husband Alan Hamel, a producer, listed the property several times i

The ‘Three’s Company’ actress and husband Alan Hamel, a producer, listed the property several times in the past decade, with prices ranging from $12.9 million to $35 million.

The couple, who bought the property in the 1970s, right around the time they got married, built an outdoor stone amphitheater for entertaining. There is also a two-bedroom caretaker’s home at the foot of the hill.

Mr. Hamel, 81, said they are selling because the property is too big for them now that their children are grown. Ms. Somers, 71, has one child from a previous marriage, and Mr. Hamel has two from a previous marriage. “For us it’s outlived its usefulness,” he said, noting he and his wife plan to build another home on a roughly 20-acre property elsewhere in Palm Springs.

4-Bedroom Unit at 432 Park in Manhattan Available for $45M

4-Bedroom Unit at 432 Park in Manhattan Available for $45M

The apartment is the most expensive resale available in the building

Last-minute holiday real estate shoppers might be interested to know that another unit at the 96-story 432 Park in Manhattan is now available for $45 million.

The four-bedroom apartment on the 77th floor hit the market on Wednesday, and is the most expensive home for resale in the building, according to records on StreetEasy.

MORE: 432 Park Sells Three $40 Million Penthouses

The mystery owner bought the unit from developers CIM Group and Macklowe Properties only last year for $39.26 million through a shell company called Residencia LLC. The high-flyer is now looking to bank more than $5 million on the empty unit.

The property has four bedrooms, five bathrooms, 12.5-foot ceilings and top- of-the-line appliances, according to the listing with Corcoran agent Carrie Chiang. The brokerage did not immediately return request for comment.

Ms. Chiang is marketing the home as an opportunity to combine it with unit 77A next door, a three-bedroom condo that is owned and listed separately for $23 million.

Despite tens of millions of dollars the buyers spent on the two 432 Park units, both are now unoccupied, according to the listing.

Open shipping records indicate that the owner at least partially furnished the home at one point. The owner had nearly two tons of furniture and furnishings imported from France, according to site Import Genius.

MORE: Check Out More Luxury Real Estate News from the New York Market

The needle-like tower overlooking Central Park in Midtown East has seen a flurry of activity in recent weeks. Earlier this month, a single buyer snagged three units in the building earlier this month, each selling for $40 million or more.

A lawyer for the owner did not immediately return request for comment.

Tablets, laptops also in focus

 

Tablets, laptops also in focus

A visitor at the Barcelona show trying out Samsung's Galaxy Book, a tablet-laptop hybrid, which runs on Windows 10.
A visitor at the Barcelona show trying out Samsung’s Galaxy Book, a tablet-laptop hybrid, which runs on Windows 10.PHOTO: AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

While mobile phones are usually the main highlight at the Mobile World Congress, their bigger siblings – tablets and laptops – were not entirely absent at this year’s show, as firms like Samsung and Lenovo announced such devices in Barcelona last week.

Samsung opted not to reveal its long-awaited Galaxy S8 at the show, launching instead two non- smartphone products: a new Galaxy tablet and a new hybrid laptop.

Lenovo announced new tablets, laptops and a hybrid of the two, alongside two new phones under its Moto branding.

Samsung’s Galaxy Tab S3 is the Korean electronics giant’s latest iteration of its Android-based tablet, sporting a 9.7-inch Super Amoled screen which supports High Dynamic Range (HDR) and a glossy glass back for the first time.

The Tab S3 thus feels very polished and sturdy, if a bit heavy. Its screen is wonderful for multimedia consumption, as pictures and videos are presented with great detail.

And with four speakers – one on each corner – tuned by Austrian audio firm AKG, music and audio rumble smoothly along, and were sufficiently loud at maximum volume even in a crowded convention hall.

 Samsung’s other launch, the Galaxy Book, is a tablet-laptop hybrid aimed at competing with Microsoft’s Surface Pro. It also runs the Windows 10 operating system and comes in two sizes – 10 and 12 inches – with a cover that doubles as a keyboard.

It’s a cinch to set up and get to work, although the case felt a bit flimsy when in laptop mode as the cover’s flex point was very bendy.

Chinese firm Lenovo’s latest hybrid, the Miix 320, sports a 10.1-inch Full HD touchscreen display, which can be detached for use as a tablet. At US$199.90 (S$282), the Miix 320 is a low-cost alternative in the hybrid market – but you get what you pay for, as it doesn’t look or feel as premium as its competitors.

Lenovo’s refresh to their tablet line came in the form of four new tablets: the Tab 4 in both eight and 10-inches, with a Plus model for each with better specs.

They still feel like the mid-range tablets they are, with a plastic back and a bit of a heft to them. They start from €169 ($252) and will ship in May.

Lastly, Lenovo showed off its refresh to its Yoga laptops, with a 13-inch and 15-inch Yoga 720, featuring a 4K screen that’s both sharp and colourful.

The smaller laptop goes for US$859.99 while the 15-inch goes for US$1,099.99.

Lenovo also announced a mid-range 14-inch Yoga 520 which will go for US$799.99 when it launches in May.

 

Private Island off of Connecticut Returns to the Market Asking $8.7M

The 2.7-acre property was first listed for $12.9 million in 2014

A private island off the coast of Connecticut that counts Marilyn Monroe among its visitors returned to the market Friday asking $8.7 million, an almost $4 million discount from when it was first listed for $12.9 million in 2013, property records show.

The 2.7-acre Tavern Island, near Norwalk, was first inhabited by European settlers in 1651 and was later used as a fortress guarding the entrance to the Rowayton Harbor against the British during the Battle of Norwalk, Mansion Global previously reported.

MORE: At $12 Million, Connecticut Mansion Gets a Price Bump But Remains a Steal

The main house was built a little more recently, in the 1930s, and housed screenwriter Lillian Hellman while she finished her classic “The Little Foxes.” Broadway lyricist Billy Rose moved in during the 1960s and hosted legendary parties there, with guest lists including the likes of Marilyn Monroe and Barbra Streisand, Mansion Global previously reported.

These days, the compound—a five-minute boat ride from the mainland—comprises five structures: a recently renovated stone manor house that spans over 6,000 square feet, a one-bedroom boat house with a game room, a tea house, a two-bedroom caretaker’s cottage and a maintenance shed, according to the property listing with Halstead Property’s Nancy Dauk, who was not immediately available to discuss the property.

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When this impressive island estate first hit the market it was $78M. Now it’s $22.75M 😳 http://mansion.global/2zGv6Df 

The property also has a stone harbor, a stone pier and floating deep water dock, two private beaches, and a 75-foot-long swimming pool. It’s located about an hour from New York City.

The current owners bought the island for $950,000 in 1981, property records show.

Realtor.com contributed to this story.

LookbookPreciéux by Chinnie debuts SS18 collection ‘The Resilience’

Designer Chinnie returns with more stunning style

For Spring/Summer 2018, rising womenswear brand Preciéux by Chinnie releases its debut collection titled “ The Resilience.”

The collection is inspired and created for the resilient woman who is strong yet flexible, she can adapt to the different circumstances in life and not only survive, she will survive looking stronger and graceful.

The Creative Designer  Chinenye “Chinnie” Ikedi  describes this collection as one for women who never back down and fight their way through situations in life without losing their elegance and confidence.

The collection also stays true to the brand’s nature of effortlessly chic and luxurious pieces.

White

 

Blush

Red

Black

Print

Credits

Brand: Preciéux by Chinnie  |@precieux_bychinnie

Photography: Jamal Mufeed |@jamal_murph

Styling: Chinenye Okoli-Ikedi |@chinnie_ikedi

Models: Precious and  Roselyne Okpara |@hrm_queen_precious  and @qin_roselyn

Makeup:  Arinze Obianuju |@rinesbeauty

Press Contact for Preciéux by Chinnie: The PR Boy  |@theprboy_

Private Island off of Connecticut Returns to the Market Asking $8.7M

The 2.7-acre property was first listed for $12.9 million in 2014

A private island off the coast of Connecticut that counts Marilyn Monroe among its visitors returned to the market Friday asking $8.7 million

A private island off the coast of Connecticut that counts Marilyn Monroe among its visitors returned to the market Friday asking $8.7 million, an almost $4 million discount from when it was first listed for $12.9 million in 2013, property records show.

The 2.7-acre Tavern Island, near Norwalk, was first inhabited by European settlers in 1651 and was later used as a fortress guarding the entrance to the Rowayton Harbor against the British during the Battle of Norwalk, Mansion Global previously reported.

MORE: At $12 Million, Connecticut Mansion Gets a Price Bump But Remains a Steal

The main house was built a little more recently, in the 1930s, and housed screenwriter Lillian Hellman while she finished her classic “The Little Foxes.” Broadway lyricist Billy Rose moved in during the 1960s and hosted legendary parties there, with guest lists including the likes of Marilyn Monroe and Barbra Streisand, Mansion Global previously reported.

These days, the compound—a five-minute boat ride from the mainland—comprises five structures: a recently renovated stone manor house that spans over 6,000 square feet, a one-bedroom boat house with a game room, a tea house, a two-bedroom caretaker’s cottage and a maintenance shed, according to the property listing with Halstead Property’s Nancy Dauk, who was not immediately available to discuss the property.

View image on TwitterView image on TwitterView image on Twitter

When this impressive island estate first hit the market it was $78M. Now it’s $22.75M 😳

The property also has a stone harbor, a stone pier and floating deep water dock, two private beaches, and a 75-foot-long swimming pool. It’s located about an hour from New York City.

The current owners bought the island for $950,000 in 1981, property records show.

Realtor.com contributed to this story.

Former NBA Star Deron Williams Relists Manhattan Penthouse for $26 Million

Former NBA Star Deron Williams Relists Manhattan Penthouse for $26 Million

Singer Adele once rented the Tribeca spread

The Tribeca penthouse belonging to former NBA point guard Deron Williams is back on the market and looking to score a sale with its new, discounted, $26 million price tag.

Mr. Williams, 33, purchased the Manhattan penthouse on North Moore Street in 2012, for $15.8 million using the limited liability company, On Point Properties, city records show.

The 7,200-square-foot condo first listed in 2015 for $33.5 million, according to listing records. It has had its price cut several times since then and has been taken on and off the market. It has also had stints as a $60,000-a-month rental unit, which saw it play home to singer and serial Grammy-winner Adele, who stayed in the home during her Madison Square Garden stint in 2016, said listing broker Andrew Azoulay of Douglas Elliman.  

The price cut is because Mr. Williams “is finally motivated to sell the property”, Mr. Azoulay said. He is selling the apartment now that he no longer lives in New York, Mr. Azoulay said.

MORE: Lakers Rookie Lonzo Ball Scores $5.2 Million California Mansion

Mr. Williams is a free agent who played with the Brooklyn Nets from 2011 to 2015 and most recently with the Cleveland Cavaliers.

The six-bedroom penthouse is a result of the combination of two units, according to the listing. It has a skylit great room, high ceilings, a custom floating staircase, 3,000 square feet of outdoor space—one terrace has a fireplace and generous seating area, while the other has a barbecue and dog house—and comes with three parking spots.

A representative for Mr. Williams did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

The new Apple iPad Pro is worth every cent

The new Apple iPad Pro is worth every cent

Whether it is swiping, playing games or sketching on ProCreate, screen response on the 10.5-inch iPad Pro is much smoother than previous iPads.
Whether it is swiping, playing games or sketching on ProCreate, screen response on the 10.5-inch iPad Pro is much smoother than previous iPads.PHOTO: APPLE 

The 10.5-inch version is great to hold in your hands, and it won’t sap your energy either

Apple has launched the new 10.5-inch iPad Pro to replace the now-defunct 9.7-inch iPad Pro. I tested the 512GB version during a long-haul flight for a working trip.

DESIGN

The 10.5-inch iPad Pro looks similar to its 9.7-inch predecessor with the same sleek aluminium solid unibody chassis and chamfered edges. Apple has somehow managed to squeeze a bigger display into a chassis that has the same 6.1mm thickness of the 9.7-inch iPad Pro. But, with the bigger screen, it is slightly wider and taller. Still, it can fit snugly into the tablet compartment of my laptop bag, which was designed for 9.7-inch iPads.

At 477g (Wi-Fi + 4G model), the 10.5-inch iPad Pro is only 33g heavier than the 9.7-inch version. But it is 0.8mm thinner and 215g lighter than the 12.9-inch iPad Pro.

The weight loss and smooth surfaces mean it is great to hold the 10.5-inch iPad Pro in your hands without fatigue setting in when using it, compared with the 12.9-inch model.

Like all iPad Pro models, it has four speakers – one at each of the four corners of its chassis. As a result, watching movies with the speakers turned on is as close to a cinematic experience as you can get on a tablet.

 

On paper, the slight 0.8-inch increase in screen size seems minimal. During actual use, I found it to be quite significant, especially when this iPad does not have the bulk of the 12.9-inch model.

Its 10.5-inch (2,224 x 1,668 pixels) display has the same pixel density and aspect ratio of its 9.7-inch predecessor, so developers don’t need to rework their iPad apps.

It supposedly has the best anti- reflective coating in the industry. While some reflections are inevitable, I can’t “see” myself while watching downloaded Netflix shows on a dark, long-haul flight.

  • TECH SPECS

    PRICE: $968 (64GB Wi-Fi) to $1,618 (512GB Wi-Fi + 4G, the version tested)

    OPERATING SYSTEM: iOS 10.3.2

    PROCESSOR: A10X Fusion chip with 64-bit architecture, M10 co-processor

    DISPLAY: 10.5 inches, 2,224 x 1,668 pixels

    CAMERA: 12-megapixel rear camera, 7-megapixel front-facing camera

    WEIGHT: 469g (Wi-Fi), 477g (Wi-Fi + 4G)

    RATING

    FEATURES: 5/5

    DESIGN: 5/5

    PERFORMANCE: 5/5

    BATTERY LIFE: 4/5

    VALUE FOR MONEY: 4/5

    OVERALL: 5/5

The display’s ProMotion technology delivers refresh rates of up to 120Hz. In other words, the screen is updated 120 times per second. That’s faster than you can blink.

Whether it is swiping, playing games or sketching on ProCreate, screen response is much smoother than in previous iPads.

CAMERA

The 9.7-inch iPad Pro has the same rear 12-megapixel camera found in the iPhone 7. But you will look silly if you use it to take photos during concerts.

But the better camera allows for future use of augmented reality (AR) when iOS 11 is out. For example, an upcoming Ikea app allows the use of AR to “place” furniture to see if it fits your living room.

The upgraded 7-megapixel front-facing camera means higher resolution. I was told during my FaceTime Web chats that picture quality was better than with my previous iPads.

PERFORMANCE

The 10.5-inch iPad Pro is powered by the new Apple A10X Fusion chip that Apple claims is faster than the main processors in most other laptops.

The new model scores 4,144 (single-core) and 9,797 (multi- core) in the Geekbench 3 benchmark test. In comparison, the 9.7-inch iPad Pro scored 3,076 in the single-core test and 5,291 in the multi-core test. Its score is even faster than Apple laptops like the 2016 MacBook (multi- core: 4,782) and 2015 MacBook Pro (multi-core: 7,082).

There is no lag when playing the graphics-intensive games Implosion and Infinity Blade III. Textures are smooth and the lighting effects are fantastic. Using Pixelmator to edit photos and iMovie to edit videos was a breeze.

Perhaps, when the new iOS 11 comes along with native drag- and-drop and file management support, the 10.5-inch iPad Po could be your default “laptop”.

BATTERY

In our intensive battery test (looping a 720p video with Wi-Fi switched on and the display at full brightness), it lasted 8hr 40min before the battery went flat. This is around 30min longer than the 9.7-inch version.

But, using it for checking e-mails regularly, typing interviews and reading news articles on Safari and the News app before sleeping, I found myself needing to charge the iPad only once every two days.

ACCESSORIES

The 10.5-inch iPad Pro has its own Smart Keyboard ($248). Its magnetic strip docks with the iPad Pro’s Smart Connector. Folded, it works like Apple’s Smart Cover to protect the display. Unfolded, it becomes a full-sized keyboard.

The iPad Pro and the Smart Keyboard, when docked, fit nicely on the tray table of an economy class seat. I was able to comfortably type this review during my long flight.

As with any iPad Pro, the 10.5-inch model works with the Apple Pencil ($148). With its ProMotion technology, there’s no perceivable latency when I was sketching on ProCreate with the Apple Pencil.

•Verdict: Without a doubt, the Apple iPad Pro (10.5-inch) is the best tablet that you can get. It might be a tad pricey, especially when you add a Smart Keyboard. But, with its portability and performance, it is worth every cent you pay.

What Is Blockchain And How Will It Change The World? Prt 2

What Is Blockchain And How Will It Change The World.

How blockchain technology works

Before computers, people kept their important documents safe by making lots of copies of them and storing them in impenetrable steel safes, buried treasure chests, or bank vaults. As an added security measure you’d translate each of these documents into a secret language that only you could understand. That way, even if someone managed to break into your bank vault and steal your stuff, they wouldn’t be able to understand your cryptic messages, and you’d still have lots of backups stored in other locations.

Blockchain puts this concept on steroids. Imagine you and a million friends are able to make copies of all your files, encrypt them with special software, and save them in each other’s digital bank vaults (computers) all across the internet. That way even if a hacker breaks into, steals, or destroys your computer, they can’t interpret your data, and your network of friends still have 999,999 backups of your files.

That’s blockchain in a nutshell. Special files, scrambled with encryption software so that only certain people can read them, saved on normal computers, linked together over a network or via the internet. The files are called ledgers – they record your data in a specific way. The computers are called nodes or blocks – personal computers that share their processing power, storage space, and bandwidth with one another. And the network is called a chain – a series of connected blocks that let computers work together to share ledgers from one another (hence the name, blockchain).

Five characteristics of blockchain technology

Now let’s take a look at these different elements of blockchain more closely. The technology has five core components, some of which are difficult to wrap your head around – but I’ve tried to explain each simply.

    1. Distributed ledgers – Millions of copies of a database that is continuously updated by anybody connected to a network.Imagine a giant spreadsheet that everybody has access to via the internet. The spreadsheet contains digital records of different things (like the value of a currency, files like PDFs or images, or even a historical list of different transactions). Whenever the spreadsheet is modified on one computer it is replicated, shared, and synchronized so that the changes are saved to all the other computers connected to the network.
  1. Peer-to-peer network – A network of computers that lets devices combine their power to complete more tasks faster.
  2. Cryptographic Hash Function – A type of encryption software.A hash takes a message (like the record of a transaction), randomly scrambles it into funny looking code, and makes it virtually impossible to decipher without a signature or key (an instruction that lets the right people unscramble the message again).
  3. Immutability – a security feature that makes it impossible to change or alter data without permission.
  4. Pseudonymity – Let’s people decide whether they want to remain anonymous or share their identity with others on the network.

How blockchain technology could change the workplace for young professionals

According to the MIT Sloan Management review, blockchain technology can be applied to many things. Not only does it promise to enhance the workplace and lives of people within it, it threatens to disrupt the entire way in which business is conducted, the public institutions we rely on, and the very system of government we take for granted.

  1. Say goodbye to intermediaries – Now that companies have a secure way of transacting with consumers directly, they no longer need to rely on platforms owned by third-parties (like banks) to conduct commerce. This will make companies more self-sufficient, open up the possibility of internal financial departments, as well as making the retail experience more flexible and immediate.
  2. Revolutionizing healthcare – Blockchain gives patients more control over their sensitive medical information, a hospital’s ability to streamline and share it, and everybody’s ability to protect it. Indeed, this much is true for any industry involved in compiling and distributing sensitive information about individuals between practitioners or departments.
  3. Employee compensation – Blockchain will make it easier to pay employees, and circumvent costly fees often associated with paying teams that work overseas. That means that companies will have fewer financial barriers when it comes to international expansion, making it increasingly likely that you’ll work with people and departments from all over the world.
  4. Enhanced democracy – Even good governments are prone to corruption, rigged voting, and an ultimate disillusion of democracy in the eyes of its citizens. Blockchain potentially allows us the ability to vote in a manner that’s impervious to outside meddling or the influence of corruption.

The key takeaway

Innovation will continue to redefine the workplace. That’s why it’s crucial for young professionals to keep pace with technological developments, understand how they work, and anticipate how they will revolutionize the organizations and economies that they work in.

Follow Daniel on Twitter for his latest writing, business, and marketing insights.

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