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Sting and Trudie Styler have built an outstanding property portfolio in the last decades
In 1988 he sang about being “an Englishman in New York” – now it seems Sting is also one of the richest men in the city, after the former Police frontman sold his sumptuous penthouse overlooking Central Park for a cool £38 million.
And if that sounds like a canny deal, what is even more impressive is that he paid just over half that amount for the apartment a mere nine years ago.
In 2008 Sting, 66, and wife Trudie Styler forked out £20 million for the three-bedroom duplex: the resulting £18 million profit works out at £2 million for every year they owned it.
It’s not so much a case of “can’t stand losing you” as “every little thing he does is magic” perhaps – and when it comes to property deals, it really does seem like Sting and Trudie have the market wrapped around their fingers.
I told him that there was a 350-year-old tree in the garden. ‘Buy it,’ was the quick reply
In 2014 the couple offloaded their nine-bedroom London mansion – a snip at £19 million.
They had bought the Grade I-listed townhouse in one of the capital’s most prestigious neighbourhoods – with Downing Street and Buckingham Palace both nearby one could conceivably count the prime minister and Queen as neighbours – in 2003 for just £5.7million.
The profit on that deal: a shade over £13 million, or £3,200 for every day they lived there.
The couple, who in their 25-year marriage have built up an estimated fortune of £230 million, have in that time also amassed an impressive property portfolio around the world.
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Sting and his wife Trudie Styler sold their New York penthouse for £38 million
Their main home is the Lake House, a £7 million, 16th-century manor house in Wiltshire.
Set in an 800-acre estate, the house even includes its own recording studio: all the songs from Sting’s Grammy Award-winning album Ten Summoner’s Tales were written and recorded there, and his 1993 smash Fields Of Gold was inspired by his love of the wildflower meadow beside the house.
The couple also now run an organic farm on the estate.
In an interview with Styler in Architectural Digest magazine, she recalled the moment she called Sting 25 years ago to tell him she had found the perfect house.
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“I told him I loved it,” she said.
“He asked why I wanted to buy it.
"I gave him a lot of reasons.
"There was silence.
"Then I told him that there was a 350-year-old tree in the garden.
"‘Buy it,’ was the quick reply.”
Sting sold his nine-bedroom London house in 2014
But if the Lake House represents a home for the singer and his family, other properties in his portfolio earn their way.
On his £8 million, 600-acre Il Palagio estate in Tuscany, staff produce their own brand of olive oil, honey and wine.
Il Palagio olive oil retails at £14.99, “Thousand Flowers” honey at £4.99 a bottle, and a case of 2015 vintage “Message in a Bottle” red wine will cost you £175.
The nine-bedroom villa Il Palagio can also be rented out: although interested parties should note it may be a case of “if you have to ask, you can’t afford it” – the property’s website doesn’t list rates, instead stating: “Il Palagio is one of the most exclusive and luxurious villas in all of Italy – and is priced accordingly.”
Sting's first home was in Station Road, Wallsend
The singer is not so coy about renting out his beachfront Malibu home, however.
The seven bedroom house, which he bought for £3.9 million in 1988, can be yours for just £160,000 a month.
For that you’ll get your own pool, waterfall, gym, private beachfront… and the knowledge that before Sting, the previous owner was Dallas star Larry Hagman.
It’s all a far cry from Sting’s childhood living accommodation.
The couple's main home is the Lake House in Wiltshire
Born and raised in fiercely working-class Tyneside, he first lived in Station Road, Wallsend, in a tiny flat above what is now a Chinese takeaway and a stone’s throw from the Swan Hunter shipyard.
He has spoken of helping his father with his milk round and how his earliest memory of growing up was “a massive ship at the end of my street, towering over the houses and blotting out the sun”.
When he was 15, his parents upgraded to a semi-detached home in nearby Cullercoats, where he shared a bedroom with his brother Phil; the property sold last year for £260,000.
If that’s the kind of figure that would barely make a dent on Sting’s monthly maintenance bills for his worldwide property portfolio these days, it seems he’s not about to cash out his real estate interests any time soon.
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According to the New York Post’s Page Six gossip column, Sting and Trudie have made a move on another Central Park apartment, a triplex in a block nicknamed “billionaire’s bunker”.
“The deal is signed but the sale won’t close until next year, which will give Sting and Trudie time to get their new apartment ready,” claimed the column.
It only remains to be seen just how canny an investment this latest buy will turn out to be.