A record purchase by Israeli real estate businessman living abroad, Tom John Or-Paz

The purchase took place on Saturday, and is the most expensive apartment purchase of 2020 by far (based on capital gains tax data.)

 (photo credit: TOM JOHN OR-PAZ)
(photo credit: TOM JOHN OR-PAZ)
The purchase took place on Saturday, and is the most expensive apartment purchase of 2020 by far (based on capital gains tax data.)

It’s hard to believe that in the business world - which is characterized by so many obstacles and difficulties - such a young man (aged 33) made it to the highest possible level, without family, fortune, or connections. But it happened, and he made it big.

This is not only the most expensive apartment purchased in Israel in 2020, but also in the luxury apartment market. In this market, the identity of the buyer is generally an oligarch, one of the richest people in the country, or a wealthy Jew from around the world. But in this case, the buyer of this unique transaction is a young real estate entrepreneur, despite the decline in the volume of real estate transactions this year.

The apartment, a 421 m2 penthouse, was purchased at a value of over 10 million EUR regardless of the Coronavirus pandemic.

 The penthouse is located on HaYarkon Street and Bugrashov in Tel Aviv. It was previously purchased from former businessman Shmuel Marom, the owner of the tourism company “Diesenhaus” and former chairman of the Israeli inbound Tourism Bureau.

As stated, the investment amount estimates a value of 40 million shekels. (10 Million EUR). The actual cost of the apartment was 27.5 million shekels with an initial investment of about 10 million shekels. This includes the construction of a rooftop pool, an investment of 2 million shekels in the kitchen, and 2.3 million shekels of sales tax. The penthouse is spread over the top 3 floors of the luxury building.

On the fifth floor is a master bedroom of about 100 meters which includes a bathroom, shower, and a sea view balcony. There are also two more bedrooms in the apartment with a bathroom and a shower in each one. On the sixth floor is a living room, kitchen, and a 35 meter balcony - one of the largest balconies overlooking the Tel Aviv beach & on the seventh floor is the roof with a pool, barbecue, and a bar.

Or-Paz made his fortune in part thanks to skills, personal charm, and Israeli fearlessness. As a child he suffered from severe stuttering that prevented him from speaking until the age of 12! Or-Paz specifically notes that this is what gave him the drive to prove himself and succeed. One example of his courage is his attendance of an Israeli breakdance championship where he won when he was only 16 years old.

(photo credit: Acropolis)
At the age of 17, after being expelled from a number of schools, he tried his luck in Los Angeles, where he lived on a tight budget from his “job” as a street dancer.  

The turning point came at the age of 19. The chain of events prove how courage, wisdom, cleverness, and self-confidence are important for success. Or-Paz came across a job offer at a company listed on NASDAQ - InfoSearch Media, where he was offered to work as an unpaid intern, a position with a strong demand for programming knowledge. Or-Paz was not educated in programming and had none of the required skills, but he approached the interview with high confidence. Of course he did not pass the test, but again, he displayed how personal charm and great determination worked in his favor. He recounts the moment met the CEO in the hallway: “I went into his room and even though I knew I failed the test, I told him ‘I’m the new intern. I’m very excited to start working here and I have some questions about the company,’” Or-Paz said. After half an hour of great conversation, one of the managers came in and did not understand what Or-Paz was doing in the CEO’s room. He told the CEO that the young man he was talking to not only was not the chosen intern, he also completely failed the assessment test. But it was too late, the CEO was so impressed with Or-Paz’s wisdom and ideas that he decided to hire him and assign him a position that will implement the ideas of a new form of “programmer.”

Or-Paz acquired his experience with branded real estate in 2013, when he was only 25 years old, and was appointed vice president of business development at the global FashionTV company. In a collaboration with FashionTV, he established more than 4,000 fashion branded apartment units. After that, he continued as an independent real estate entrepreneur.

Or-Paz is also an art collector and the owner of LightArt, artistic real estate Brand. He incorporates art in all his assets, as well as with this purchase. Or-Paz buys properties around the world and combines them with art. The combination of art and real estate create a unique and distinctive branding for his properties.

In the same way, Or-Paz succeeds in conveying his ideas to the line of artists with whom he works, and they translate them into special works of art that double as assets. In addition to being a real estate entrepreneur, art collector and a businessman, he is also a philanthropist.

Or-Paz is the owner of an orphanage in Bulgaria. He has donated many food crates to over 1000 families during the Corona pandemic; and continues to donate to many associations including the Chesdei Naomi Association for Holocaust Survivors and Childless Seniors, Beit Hashanti, Ezer Mizion, and the Refua V’Simcha Association.

Or-Paz who knew the feeling of the hunger for success from his first days in the business world, and sees that as a driving force to ensure that no family stays hungry.