Luxury Luminary: Mohamed Hadid

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Imagining a Los Angeles before Mohamed Hadid is a little like imagining Miami before Ian Schrager. Both are game changers in their cities: Hadid with his record-breaking spec mansions and Schrager with his chic boutique hotel concepts that always seem to find their edge. While both entrepreneurs operate in very different spheres, they are not all that far apart when it comes to having a flair for reinvention. “We build fantasies,” says Hadid of his namesake development firm. “And we are always reinventing that fantasy for a new generation of wealth in Los Angeles.”

Our View: Those fantasies — a $72 million mansion in Bel Air, which set a national sales record in 2010, and a $58 million palace next to the famed Beverly Hills Hotel in 2013 — have a habit of capturing headlines just by their sheer size and price point. Last year, Palazzo di Amore — a 53,000-square-foot Mediterranean-style villa estate he finished developing with real estate investor Jeff Greene — set another record when it first hit the market for $195 million, the most expensive residential listing in the country at the time. (The residence has recently been reduced to $149 million.) He has also developed many residences for celebrities and A-listers, including an $85 million estate currently on the market on Sunset Boulevard in Holmby Hills. All of Hadid’s residences, whether built on spec or for a specific client in mind, ultimately reflect his belief that building turnkey-worthy properties in the best locations will attract a globally minded buyer who wants to live in a magical place: Los Angeles.

His View: “I’ve always looked for major pieces of real estate in the most desirable areas of the city, where there is infrastructure and where my clients want to live. As a developer, you want to create your masterpieces in the best locations. It is important to understand your client and know who your end users are, too. I know I am building residences for those rare and sophisticated individuals who recognize that they are not just buying a piece of real estate, but buying a piece of art. They know what they want. And what they want is what they perceive to be the best.”

On the Horizon: Six new residences will be debuting in Beverly Hills and Los Angeles next year. His latest creation, a 30,000-square-foot contemporary sculptural-style mansion in Bel Air, is awaiting completion. The home features curved concrete, marble and glass walls, views spanning to the ocean and an IMAX movie theater — “the largest ever installed in a home,” he says.