Last July, the New York real estate market was shocked by Joe Tsai’s purchase of a two-story condo at 220 Central Park South, nicknamed “Billionaires Row”. Tsai paid $157.5 million for an apartment on the 60th and 61st floors of the spectacular residential tower as well as a maid’s quarters on the 18th floor. It was reported as the third most expensive residential transaction in US history.

Now it’s the fourth.

Bloomberg News and other financial media reported Thursday that Tsai, through his private investment vehicle, Blue Pool Capital, paid $188 million for the penthouse in the same building…13 floors above above the apartment he bought last year…

Blue Pool paid $188 million for the 220 Central Park South property, according to New York Registry documents. The company took out a 30-year, $71.5 million mortgage through JPMorgan Chase & Co. for the 73rd-floor property, according to filings. The purchase included a maid’s room on a lower level.

Nobody is saying that Tsai and/or his partner in Blue Pool, co-founder and former executive chairman of Alibaba, Jack Ma, are planning to do with the penthouse or for that matter the two floors in the 60s. that all this high-priced real estate is an investment? The former owner doubled his investment in three years. Will Tsai live in one apartment, Ma in the other? Ma clashed with Chinese authorities in 2020. One thing this seems to indicate is that Tsai is fully engaged in New York. You don’t spend a third of a billion dollars on two apartments without a real commitment.

Tsai and his wife, Clara Wu Tsai, have residences in Hong Kong and LaJolla, a toney neighborhood in San Diego. It looks like the couple will become New York residents for the first time since leaving the city 25 years ago to help found Alibaba.