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Berlin's most expensive flat sells for €5.7 million

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Berlin's most expensive flat sells for €5.7 million
Berlin's Gendarmenmarkt is one of the most luxurious addresses in the city. Photo: DPA
07:57 CEST+02:00
A Berlin property firm has set a city-wide record for the most expensive apartment sold, closing a deal for €5.7 million on a centrally-located penthouse.

The Immobilien Zeitung reported that the Virtu agency sold the property for €22,000 per square metre, almost €10,000 more than the current highest price quoted by the city Senate.

Previously, the most expensive apartment in Berlin sold for €5 million, the Senate property market report published last August showed.

"More and more buyers in the luxury field are interested in the city," said Georg Strohmayer, a spokesman for the Virtu property company that sold the flat. "There's a lot of demand."

Germany's capital, though, has its own style that sets it apart. Wealthy buyers have felt comfortable flaunting their success in Munich, Hamburg or Frankfurt, but "luxury in Berlin is more associated with understatement," Strohmayer said.

Prices in the capital are catching up with other large German cities after years of lagging behind, he added.

The good news for those looking for a more modest dwelling is that the apartment's prestigious characteristics probably had a lot more to do with the price than anything else.

"Luxury is itself a product," said Strohmayer, "you don't buy a square metre."

"Just like with Gucci, you don't buy a watch for €5,000, you buy a product. For them it's worth it to pay that much."

Assessors say that the price of Berlin property isn't just increasing in the luxury category. Prices in 2013 rose by 10 percent over the previous year, with the average flat costing €168,000 or €2,660 per square metre.

The buyers, a wealthy family, will now enjoy the 260 m2 flat's wine cellar, private gym and sauna with a view of the city skyline, according to the property firm's description.

Located on Hausvogteiplatz near the Gendarmenmarkt square in the capital's Mitte district, they will have luxury shops and five-star hotels as neighbours.

Poor, but sexy?

But Berlin has a long way to go before property prices compete with those of other European capitals such as London or Paris.

A new record was set in the British capital this year after the last remaining penthouse at the One Hyde Park development sold for £140 million (over €175 million), almost €120,000 per square metre.

And while the City of Lights can't quite match the foreign-investor-fuelled property boom across the Channel, Paris' most expensive flat reached €8 million – or €42,000 per square metre – when it was sold in May.

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