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Date Created: 12/21/15
FROM FORBES MAGAZINE KeepingYour Toys ByDaniel Fisher with Steven Bertoni and Devon Pendleton Forbes Magazine PublishedMay 11, 2009 S hroud them or show them off--justdon't give up your indulgences. Spending is your patriotic duty. Billionaire John Paul DeJoria encountered a bit of turbulence recently when he tried, as he usually does for short flights, to charter a low -end Lear(LEA- news-people)or West Wind. Not so easy. Because cash-strapped owners are mothballing their Gulfstreams and demurely switching to puddle- jumpers, DeJoria had to have a small jet flown in from Houston in order for him to take off from Austin. Before the crash, "most billionaires would take their “With the greater part of rich people, the chief big G4s and G5s anywhere," says DeJoria, who made enjoyment of riches consists in the parade of his money with Paul Mitchell hair products and riches, which in their eyes is never so complete as Patrón tequila. "Now business for these small planes iswhen they appear to possess those decisive marks suddenly through the roof." of opulence which nobody can possess but Theflip side is that big jets are available at bargain themselves.” --Adam Smith prices. Grocery-chain owner John Catsimatidis says he It appears that the überaffluent are not trimming their was recently offered a Gulfstream once worth $40 domestic retinues, although of course the recession million or so for $15 million. "Why?I was told it provides a good smoke screen for disposing of a belonged to one of the people who accepted tarp servant you don't like anyway. "People with real money money," Catsimatidis says, referring to the U.S. need to maintain staff," says Mary Louise Starkey, Treasuryprogram to infusefinancial institutions with president and founder of Starkey International tax dollars. "They don't want to anger Washington." Institute in Denver, which trains butlers, nannies, If you have cash, there are deals in the used airplaneaids, chefs and sommeliers. "I see the people who market. "Acouple sold at numbers we'd never tohught have $100 million to $750 million maybe scaling we'd see," says Kevin O'Leary, president of Jet Advisorsk." Such riffraff mayeven be attempting to do their in Broomfield, Colo. own domestic chores, as Martha Stewart's Homekeeping Handbook (Random House, 2006)chillingly seems to suggest. The book http://www.forbes.com/forbes/2009/0511/066-billionaires-survivors-guide-keeping-your-toys.html FROM FORBES MAGAZINE contains useful advice on the care and feeding of right now at a loss to support their lifestyle," says mansions, but, sniffs Starkey, "She's wrong about how Verbit. "They're scaling back and waiting it out." long it takes to iron a shirt." And yet beyond the gaze of tax collectors and Sales of diamonds, $300,000 cars and really expensive congressional aides, life as few of us will ever know it fashion are off. But somebody keeps buying luxury goes on. This year's St.Bart's Bucket drew a fleet of 35 goods, especially online--and anonymously. Sales at megayachts, including venture capitalist Thomas Web retailer Net-a-Porter.com climbed 45% for the Perkins' 298-foot nouveau clipper ship, Maltese Falcon. fiscal year ended Jan. 31 to $120 million. Recent Even disgraced New York City real estate owner Harry offerings include a Balmain embroidered minidress Macklowe, who has lost several buildings to lenders ($12,355); a Bottega Veneta crocodile bag ($19,500); lately, showed up with his 112-foot sloop, Unfurled. If and Halston peep-toe ankle boots ($2,325). Shipped the revolution is coming, all the more reason to seize from London in a black boxtied with grosgrain the day. ribbon, your little gewgaws arrive in unbranded, recycled brown paper bags. It's a good time to go shopping for something that floats. "You can pick up anything in the sma-b lloat category veryeasily at a verygood price," says Norma Trease, journalist and consultant in the superyacht business. By "small" she means less than 100 feet. Several builders, including Feretti and Couach, have gone broke. Rodriguez Group, a French manufacturer that once surged on sales of its $1 million-plus motor yachts, lately reported big losses as it's written down the value of boats it took as trad-ins. Now it's slashing prices. Large one-of-a-kind yachts tend to hold up even through recessions, says Lisa Verbit, national marine executive at U.S. Trust. Banks like U.S. Trust will finance multimillion-dollar yachts at a little abve 30- day Libor. Lay off the crew and mothball the boat (as the Forbes family did with the Highlander ), and the cost of holding a $20 million yacht until times get better is as little as 5%, or $1 million a year. "Agood number of the guys living on these huge yachts are living off their liquidity--they sold the stock in a business they owned and they don't want to sell assets http://www.forbes.com/forbes/2009/0511/066-billionaires-survivors-guide-keeping-your-toys.html
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