The developer is New York-based Millennium Partners, whichpreviously developed the Four Seasons Hotel & Residences at 735Market. Its equity partners are Morgan Stanley and a local investorgroup in San Franciso called WTR that has ties back to Hong Kong.The total project cost is $500 million, including $350 million forconstruction, and the gross sell-out value is north of $900million.

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Richard G. Baumert, a managing partner with the Millennium,tells GlobeSt.com that overall sales to date for Millennium Towerhave "surpassed all of our projections" and recently topped $200million. His goal is to have that total up to $250 to $300 millionby the time the building is ready for occupancy, so he can "paydown the construction loan" from HSBC. The longer-term goal is tohave all the units sold by late 2011. Millennium's equity partnersinclude a local investor group in San Francisco called WTR that hasties back to Hong Kong, and Morgan Stanley.

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Designed by Glenn Rescalvo of Handel Architects, the 645-foottower and an adjacent 11-story mid-rise building will comprise atotal of 419 residences, including one, two and three-bedroom unitsranging in size from 750 sf to 6,000 sf. The units are divided inthe three strata--Residences (lower floors, main tower), CityResidences (mid-rise building) and Grand Residences (upper floors,main tower)-- each of which has its own lobby, elevators and staff.The $2-million sales center is located at 450 Mission St. Theasking prices range from $700,000 to well more than $10 million,with the overall average price per sf coming in at around $1,500,Baumert says.

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Amenities will include a private concierge and exclusive accessto a 20,000-sf Club Level featuring an owners' lounge, tasting roomand cellar, private dining room--serviced by the on-siterestaurant-- screening room, children's playroom, an outdoorterrace, and a 5,500-sf fitness center complete with Pilates andyoga studios, massage therapy, locker rooms, Jacuzzi and steamrooms, as well as a 75-foot, indoor, competition-length lap poolset beneath a soaring skylight. The development also will have7,800 sf of street-level retail for two occupants, one of whichwill be "an upscale dining establishment under the direction of oneof the city's outstanding chefs."

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Most of the sales to date have been higher-end units, Baumertsays. There are four penthouses on the top two floors that will bedelivered as raw space and four units on the 58th floor that willbe delivered as finished units. The four finished units on the 58thfloor sold at an average price of $1,900 per sf. One of the4,000-sf, unfinished top-floor penthouses sold for $2,288 per sf,which may be a local record, he says. Sales of the units on thelower floors will come in due time, he says.

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"There are a lot of interested people but no sense of urgencyright now; since they can't move in tomorrow, there's no rush,"Baumert says. "I think as the [economic] news gets better, thatwill be one good push [for sales] and once the building opens wewill get a big pop."

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The four-year sales schedule should give the market plenty oftime to absorb not only Millennium Tower but the two otherhigh-rise residential towers that recently opened, One Rincon Hilland Infinity. The units in those building will compete on pricewith the units in the lower floors of Millennium Tower, saysBaumert, who is confident Millennium Tower's standard level offinish and amenity package will stand out amid the crowd.

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"Our 20,000-sf club-level floor, that is best the thing we'veever done," he says. "We've got the best amenity package of any resbuilding on west coast and when people can touch it, that will be areal big boost."

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The last time Millennium Partners opened a high-rise condominiumtower into a down market in San Francisco, things turned out justfine, Baumert says. That was the Four Seasons Hotel &Residences, which opened in 2001. Pre-sales were brisk in 2000 andthe 136 units were completely sold out when the dot-com crash and9/11 rolled around.

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"We lost a good amount of contracts but ended up selling out 18months later at a little more than $1,100 per sf," Baumert says."That same product, six years later, is approaching $2,000 per sfif you are fast enough to grab one when they come up for resale. Itwas a rough neighborhood but now it's changed. The Ritz Carlton isacross the street and the St. Regis is around the corner."

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