Whether you’re willing to admit it or not, a brief part of your television routine now involves a reality show. We’re not saying you’re catching the latest shenanigans on “Jersey Shore,” but everything from the ESPN to HGTV is considered reality these days – and the shows are offering a whole lot more to the palate than “Real World” days.
“Selling New York” and “Million Dollar Listing” are two vanity reality shows that publicize the high-end luxury lifestyle of the nation’s elite. Listings on both “Selling New York” and “Million Dollar Listing” are at the height of Manhattan living – think penthouse suites, exquisite views and major million-dollar price tags.
“Selling New York” follows three real estate firms in Manhattan with an invaluable reputation and insight into Manhattan’s nobility. The HGTV series has just been signed on for its sixth and seven seasons, cementing the obsession for floor flats, elaborate showroom affairs and million-dollar destinations.
“I think the show gives an inside look at what actually goes on when you’re negotiating a deal, when you’re showing an apartment, what goes on in the buyers’ and sellers’ minds – things that are generally not public knowledge,” Michele Kleier, President of Gumley Haft Kleier and star of “Selling New York.”
The regal real estate maven and her family (Gumley Haft Kleier has a real-life real estate lineage with daughters Samantha Kleier-Forbes and Sabrina Kleier-Morgenstern on board for deals) who strut around high heels and higher expectations showcase the city’s most lavish, and iconic, properties. From floor apartments infamous for their scenes in ‘Sex and the City’ to new projects in sunny Boca Raton, the Kleiers keep it classy. “It’s a lot of fun,” says Michele, who admits that while business has never been better, she also can’t leave the house without makeup.
The real characters of this HGTV series are the properties themselves – a legacy that Gumley Haft Kleier promises in its slogan “Run by Smart New Yorkers for Smart New Yorkers.” “Selling New York” offers little drama and instead relies on sophisticated employment by eliminating in-tow camera crews tailing every associate move. Still riveting in sales and spectacular views, “Selling New York” has remained compelling for its real insight into real estate. Plain and simple, Michele says, “It’s a fun look into New York real estate.”
Bravo has perfected the smug character, and in “Million Dollar Listing New York” the reality spin-off offers a tasteful yet stereotypical real estate series for viewers. Unlike HGTV, this New York version is full of bad-mouthing rivals, pretty boys with illustrious pasts and an underdog that comes out on top. While the new season mirrors Bravo’s original Los Angeles version, the strength of this reality show is still in the properties – viewers are offered a peak into a penthouse view from New York without ever leaving their living room. The show claims to follow“prominent, big personality real estate agents in New York who handle the most high-profile clients, buyers, sellers and listings in town,” even enlisting these showboys into their love lives, private homes and deals turned sour.
A rising star of Bravo’s new series is Nest Seekers International SVP managing director Ryan Serhant, who says in Luxury Real Estate the opportunity to join the show both “amazing and terrifying.” “I had a great time filming Million Dollar Listing New York and I hope people find it fun to watch. I now that the fans of the Los Angeles version will love the New York version,” Serhant told Exec.
Though humble – despite being named one of the city’s top brokers by The Real Deal Magazine - Serhant doesn’t shy away from the competition enlisted in Bravo’s expertly maneuvered camera crew. “The New York real estate market is competitive and as a result there is definitely drama,” he admits. “Million Dollar Listing New York does a great job of capturing our real interactions. Real estate in New York is tough but exciting business and there will no doubt be high stakes and edge of your seat moments."
This Bravo reality show might incite a little more drama in detailing demanding clients and meticulous associates, but it still delivers big on real estate. New York City tycoons on the hunt for the Big Apple’s wealthiest estates, penthouses and wildly modern properties with unearthly views should all be the true star. The drama alone comes from demanding clients and director rivalries as competing agencies vie for a client’s attention and commission. As always, Bravo puts those intricacies front and center – and the reality of Manhattan’s real estate shines.
Search through Manhattan’s properties with your feet up with the help of Nest Seekers International’s Ryan Serhant or Gumley Haft Kleier’s Michele Kleier – either way, you’re going to feel like you’re in an alternate reality.