Thirty-two stories above West Hollywood, California, there is a big, empty space. A sweeping, 7,000-square-foot penthouse in the storied, iconic Sierra Towers that has been stripped down to the bare concrete bones.
Listed at $58 million, with sweeping 360-degree terrace views of Los Angeles, the fact that it is empty apparently makes it more valuable.
The new strategy, which is becoming increasingly popular in luxury real estate markets like New York and Los Angeles, is called "white-boxing." Strip out all the finishings, all the amenities, even the highest of the high-end kitchens and baths, and then you can charge more for the space.
"A lot of times people will buy something, totally done, beautiful and they'll still rip everything out and start over, so this trend is more, buy it, do whatever you want to do and you don't have to pay to rip out someone else's design," said Jade Mills, with Coldwell Banker of Beverly Hills. "This is much more valuable than buying something and having to rip everything out."