Photo by Michael Ventura

Most Expensive Condo

Parc Somerset Penthouse | 5630 Wisconsin Ave., Chevy Chase

This 6,737-square-foot penthouse unit on the 18th floor of the Parc Somerset in Chevy Chase sold for the list price of $7.95 million in December, a record high for a condo in the Washington, D.C., area—and within a month, it was back on the market for $8.75 million. (The previous high was $7.29 million, paid for a residence at the Ritz Carlton in Georgetown in 2002.)

The condo, half of the top floor of a 1999 building—the newest of three that comprise the 17-acre, gated Somerset complex—has five bedrooms, five bathrooms, nearly wraparound views, several balconies and a solarium.

Seller Paul Elicker, a retired chairman and CEO of SCM Corp., a Fortune 500 company, had it on the market just two days and received $1,180 per square foot in the all-cash sale.

The buyer, a local real estate developer and native Washingtonian now living with his family in Chevy Chase, “asked to remain anonymous for the moment,” says listing agent Zelda Heller of TTR Sotheby International Realty.

Heller says he already owns two units in the complex. Whoever buys the penthouse condo from him will get a couple of impressive next-door neighbors: William S. Cohen, the former U.S. senator from Maine and secretary of defense under President Bill Clinton, and his wife, Janet Langhart Cohen, a former television journalist and author who blogs for the Huffington Post.

Their unit is 6,732 square feet. The high-rise complex comes complete with indoor and outdoor pools, party rooms, 24-hour desk and concierge, a gym, and racquetball and tennis courts. 

Eugene L. Meyer is a contributing editor for the magazine who lives in Silver Spring.