A split-level penthouse apartment in the historic Barclays Bank headquarters in downtown Joburg is on the market for R3.99m — believed to be a record for inner-city asking prices in Gauteng. To date, the highest price paid for a sectional-title residential unit in the Joburg CBD was R3.3m.

That was in July 2017, for a 228m² loft in Hallmark House, in the artsy Maboneng precinct, according to data from Lightstone Property (see table). Now, the 300m² penthouse at 87 Commissioner Street is poised to move that mark.The apartment belongs to German academics Karin Reinprecht and David Hancock, who in the mid-to late-2000s bought a number of units in the Art Deco building from developer Urban Ocean. The latter entered the Joburg CBD in 2004, following flight from the area in the late 1980s.Urban Ocean was one of the first developers to turn derelict office buildings in the old financial district into upmarket apartments. At the time, it also sold a 226m² shell in nearby Corner House ...

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