Earlier today, Mayor Bill de Blasio went on Buzzfeed’s Twitter morning show (yep, that’s a thing) AMtoDM to discuss myriad NYC topics: Cy Vance, the subway, and, inevitably, real estate. Buzzfeed’s editor-in-chief Ben Smith asked De Blasio to respond to the perceived wisdom that New York is a “luxury city” where foreign buyers—including Russians—move in order to launder money.
“I see Russian oligarchs as a problem,” De Blasio responded. He later continued, “It manifests here as a lot of people with ill-gotten gains buying a lot of property, and I don’t like it one bit. I wish I had a specific law or approach to defend it.”
Which got us thinking: Where are all the Russian oligarchs living these days? Back in 2013, we compiled a list of all of the buildings where Russian billionaires were snapping up real estate—and unsurprisingly, every spot listed was either in Midtown (and in marquee buildings like 15 Central Park West or the Plaza) or the Upper East or West Side. (So no, Russian oligarchs aren’t taking all the “nice” apartments—just all the really, really fancy ones.)
So where else are Russian billionaires living these days? Here’s a brief list:
Roman Abramovich, who’s a part owner of the Barclays Center (among his many, many other holdings), is in the process of building an Upper East Side megamansion from three separate townhouses. The Frankenhome-to-be, located on East 79th Street, was given Landmarks Preservation Commission approval in 2016; it’ll come before the LPC again in the coming weeks for alterations to previous plans.
Fertilizer magnate Dmitry Rybolovlev snapped up an $88 million condo at 15 Central Park West in 2011—possibly for his daughter, Ekaterina Rybolovlev—breaking the record for the priciest condo sale ever…at the time, anyway. (One57 broke that.) Though it was rumored that the Rybolovlevs were going to sell the place, it appears to still be in their hands.
Composer Igor Krutoy snapped up a $43 million condo at the Plaza in 2011, which was—until Rybololev’s 15 CPW purchase—the priciest condo sale in the city. (Of course, it didn’t take long to break that record.) The apartment is actually an assemblage of a few other units.
While it’s unclear if politician Andrey Vavilov still owns a home in New York City, he did, at one point, have two trophy properties under his belt: a penthouse at the Time Warner Center, and a Plaza apartment that prompted a lawsuit, with Vavilov as the plaintiff, over its size. The former apartment sold for $51 million in 2015, while London developer Christian Candy bought the latter in 2012. (Candy sold it this year for $32 million.)
And while many of the buyers in newer supertalls—including One57 and 432 Park Avenue—are hidden behind anonymous LLCs, it’s a safe bet that there are rich Russians in their midst.