Hong Kong apartment fetches record $61 million

A luxury apartment in Hong Kong has sold for a record HK$470 million ($61 million), making it the priciest condominium in the Chinese city and possibly the second most expensive in the world, reports said.

An unidentified buyer paid the HK$75,806 ($9,773) per-square-foot price for the 6,200-square-feet (576-square-metre) unit at Opus Hong Kong in the upmarket Peak residential area, Hong Kong Economic Journal and Sing Tao Daily said.

The whopping price for the unit, which takes up the entire eighth floor of the 12-storey building, is believed to be Asia's most expensive apartment and the world's second most costly after London's One Hyde Park, Sing Dao Daily said.

The building was designed by the Pritzker Prize-winning architect Frank Gehry.

Developer Swire Properties declined to confirm the deal.

"We have no information to share at this point," spokeswoman May Lam-Kobayashi told AFP.

She added however that tenants recently leased another unit at the property for HK$850,000 a month.

Local media reported that the sale beat the city's previous record price of HK$360 million paid for a unit at another luxury property last year.

"This is definitely a new record price for any Hong Kong apartment," Centaline research head Wong Leung-sing told AFP.

"But we think it's an isolated case as this is an ultra luxury condo," Wong said, adding that it could not be used as a yardstick to gauge investors' appetite for luxury apartments in the Asian financial hub.

Property prices in Hong Kong, famous for its sky-high rent and super-rich tycoons, have surged over the past few years due to record low interest rates and a flood of wealthy buyers from mainland China.

The property market however has seen a slowdown this year, with sentiment hit by the eurozone crisis and plans to boost public housing.

Even so, many residents complain they can no longer afford decent accommodation in the city of seven million people, and analysts say property ownership is out of reach even for the upper middle class.

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