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Mapping the 25 Priciest Home Sales in Boston History

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It's Whale Week 2013, wherein we look at Boston's high-rolling-est real estate. And what better way to deep-dive into that then to chart the 25 most expensive condo and single-family home deals in the city's history? You may recognize some of the whales here—Mass. Governor Alvan Fuller, John Quincy Adams, a certain quarterback on early off-season—and some of the whale addresses they fancied.

And you may also pick up on the repeats in this top 25: As is the way in nature, whales beget whales, with some addresses selling really high one year, only to outdo that price later on. In fact, the two biggest home trades in Boston history happened at the same many-terraced Mandarin Oriental penthouse. Anyway, enjoy the whale watching!

· 120 Most Expensive Homes Sold in Boston. Ever. [Charlesgate]
· Our Curbed Maps archive [Curbed Boston]
· Our Whale Week 2013 archive [Curbed Boston]

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1. Mandarin Oriental PH2-E

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776 Boylston Street
Boston, MA 02116

The approximately 8,000-square-foot spread is the most expensive home ever sold in Boston in modern times: $13,200,000 in a deal that closed in June 2011. It took a while, though (944 days), and was originally listed for nearly $17M.

2. Mandarin Oriental PH2-E

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776 Boylston Street
Boston, MA 02116

Where do whales come from? Other whales. In addition to being the priciest Boston home sale ever, in June 2011, this penthouse is also the second priciest Boston home sale ever, in September 2008 for $13,089,000.

3. 15 Commonwealth Avenue

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15 Commonwealth Avenue
Boston, MA

After more than 1,000 days on the market, the 15,000-square-foot, 10-BR mansion traded in April 2012 for $12,500,000, after a gradual slide from more than $15M. The spread is being used as a private home, according to a source with knowledge of the deal.

4. 20 Louisburg Square

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20 Louisburg Square
Boston, MA

The 7,674-square-foot manse once belonged to financial magnate Samuel Ward, a founder of the Metropolitan Museum of Art. The 4-BR, 6-BA spread traded in August 2011 for $11,500,000.

5. 3 Louisburg Square

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3 Louisburg Square
Boston, MA

The 6,570-square-foot, 5-BR, 5.5-BA townhouse traded for $11,000,000 in April 2012, at least $1M under the last asking.

6. 8 Mount Vernon Place

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8 Mount Vernon Place
Boston, MA

The 9,500-square-foot manse belonged until the turn of the century to the Unitarian Universalist Association, whose congregants included John Quincy Adams, Benjamin Franklin, Ralph Waldo Emerson and Susan B. Anthony. It traded in May 2011 for $10,890,000.

7. 49-51 Commonwealth Avenue, #C/G

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49-51 Commonwealth Avenue
Boston, MA

The building was once home to marble manufacturer Charles Torrey as well as shipping magnate George Augustus Gardner. This particular unit traded in April 2010 for $10,800,000.

8. Mandarin Oriental, #E12-C

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776 Boylston Street
Boston, MA 02116

This 8,360-square-foot spread traded for the very precise $10,509,090 in October 2008.

9. Mandarin Oriental, #W11-B

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776 Boylston Street
Boston, MA 02116

This 6,111-square-foot, 3-BR, 6-BA condo traded in February 2012 for $10,300,000, after asking as much as $12,500,000.

10. Mandarin Oriental, #PH1-C

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776 Boylston Street
Boston, MA 02116

The 5,100-square-foot, 3-BR, 4.5-BA traded in September 2008, just as the financial world collapsed, for $10,014,820, after being listed for as much as $12,500,000.

11. Mandarin Oriental, #W11-B

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776 Boylston Street
Boston, MA 02116

We did say that whales beget whales: This 6,111-square-foot, 3-BR, 6-BA condo traded for $9,804,070 in October 2008, and would trade again in February 2012 for $10,300,000.

12. 96 Beacon Street, PH

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96 Beacon Street
Boston, MA

The 6,337-square-foot, 4-BR, 4.5-BA penthouse traded in April 2009 for $9,399,673.

13. 8 Mount Vernon Place

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8 Mount Vernon Place
Boston, MA

The 9,500-square-foot townhouse is one of those whales that begets other whales (as is the way of things in nature): It traded in March 2008 for $9,375,000, and then again in May 2011 for $10,890,000.

14. 58 Commonwealth Avenue

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58 Commonwealth Avenue
Boston, MA

The 9,786-square-foot townhouse's owner a century ago, Henry S. Rowe, was a noted book and bookplates collector. The house traded in July 2010 for $9,350,000.

15. 310 Beacon Street, #4

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310 Beacon Street
Boston, MA

This $9,200,000 trade in June 2012 involved the two biggest whales in recent Boston real estate history: Tom Brady and Gisele Bundchen were the sellers of the 5,311-square-foot, 3-BR, 3.5-BA duplex that had been asking as much as $10,500,000.

16. 49-51 Commonwealth Avenue, #C/G

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49-51 Commonwealth Avenue
Boston, MA

In a deal that closed Halloween 2003, this whale traded for $9,120,000. It would trade seven years later for $10,800,000.

17. Mandarin Oriental, #PH1-C

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776 Boylston Street
Boston, MA 02116

This spread actually traded for around $960,000 less in May 2010 than what it traded for in September 2008: $9,050,000 vs. $10,014,820. Still, whatta whale!

18. Mandarin Oriental, #W12-B

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776 Boylston Street
Boston, MA 02116

The 4,922-square-foot, 3-BR, 2-BA spread traded in June 2011 for $12,200,000.

19. 100 Beacon Street, PHB

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The 4,083-square-foot, 3-BR, 5-BA penthouse went for an even $9,000,000 in August 2012, well below its asking of $10,500,000.

20. 128 Commonwealth Avenue

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128 Commonwealth Avenue
Boston, MA

The most notable owner, perhaps, of the 9,313-square-foot townhouse was Jonas Harrod French, a banker and Union colonel in the Civil War who helped manage the occupation of New Orleans. The house went back and forth between commercial and residential use after French, and was converted into condos, before being converted back into a single-family residence in 2004. It traded in January 2011 for $8,750,000.

21. Mandarin Oriental, #W12-B

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776 Boylston Street
Boston, MA 02116

The 4,922-square-foot, 3-BR, 2-BA spread traded in October 2008 for $8,700,000. It would trade again in June 2011 for $12,200,000.

22. 128 Commonwealth Avenue

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128 Commonwealth Avenue
Boston, MA

The 9,313-square-foot townhouse sold in June 2004 for $8,650,000 (it would do so again in January 2011 for $8,750,000).

23. 56 Beacon Street

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56 Beacon Street
Boston, MA

The 8,684-square-foot, 5-BR, 8-BA manse traded for $8,550,000 in January 2004. It's on the market again now for $12,500,000.

24. 150 Beacon Street, PH

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150 Beacon Street
Boston, MA

The building was once home to Alvan Fuller, who ran one of the world's most lucrative car dealership and who served as Massachusetts' governor in the late 1920s. Emerson College owned the building from the 1960s through the 1990s, when it became condos. The penthouse sold in September 2010 for $8,500,000.

25. Ritz-Carlton, #29E/H

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2 Avery Street
Boston, MA

The only sale of the 25 to close outside of Back Bay or Beacon Hill, this 7,216-square-foot spread with five bedrooms traded in March 2008 for $8,500,000.

1. Mandarin Oriental PH2-E

776 Boylston Street, Boston, MA 02116

The approximately 8,000-square-foot spread is the most expensive home ever sold in Boston in modern times: $13,200,000 in a deal that closed in June 2011. It took a while, though (944 days), and was originally listed for nearly $17M.

776 Boylston Street
Boston, MA 02116

2. Mandarin Oriental PH2-E

776 Boylston Street, Boston, MA 02116

Where do whales come from? Other whales. In addition to being the priciest Boston home sale ever, in June 2011, this penthouse is also the second priciest Boston home sale ever, in September 2008 for $13,089,000.

776 Boylston Street
Boston, MA 02116

3. 15 Commonwealth Avenue

15 Commonwealth Avenue, Boston, MA

After more than 1,000 days on the market, the 15,000-square-foot, 10-BR mansion traded in April 2012 for $12,500,000, after a gradual slide from more than $15M. The spread is being used as a private home, according to a source with knowledge of the deal.

15 Commonwealth Avenue
Boston, MA

4. 20 Louisburg Square

20 Louisburg Square, Boston, MA

The 7,674-square-foot manse once belonged to financial magnate Samuel Ward, a founder of the Metropolitan Museum of Art. The 4-BR, 6-BA spread traded in August 2011 for $11,500,000.

20 Louisburg Square
Boston, MA

5. 3 Louisburg Square

3 Louisburg Square, Boston, MA

The 6,570-square-foot, 5-BR, 5.5-BA townhouse traded for $11,000,000 in April 2012, at least $1M under the last asking.

3 Louisburg Square
Boston, MA

6. 8 Mount Vernon Place

8 Mount Vernon Place, Boston, MA

The 9,500-square-foot manse belonged until the turn of the century to the Unitarian Universalist Association, whose congregants included John Quincy Adams, Benjamin Franklin, Ralph Waldo Emerson and Susan B. Anthony. It traded in May 2011 for $10,890,000.

8 Mount Vernon Place
Boston, MA

7. 49-51 Commonwealth Avenue, #C/G

49-51 Commonwealth Avenue, Boston, MA

The building was once home to marble manufacturer Charles Torrey as well as shipping magnate George Augustus Gardner. This particular unit traded in April 2010 for $10,800,000.

49-51 Commonwealth Avenue
Boston, MA

8. Mandarin Oriental, #E12-C

776 Boylston Street, Boston, MA 02116

This 8,360-square-foot spread traded for the very precise $10,509,090 in October 2008.

776 Boylston Street
Boston, MA 02116

9. Mandarin Oriental, #W11-B

776 Boylston Street, Boston, MA 02116

This 6,111-square-foot, 3-BR, 6-BA condo traded in February 2012 for $10,300,000, after asking as much as $12,500,000.

776 Boylston Street
Boston, MA 02116

10. Mandarin Oriental, #PH1-C

776 Boylston Street, Boston, MA 02116

The 5,100-square-foot, 3-BR, 4.5-BA traded in September 2008, just as the financial world collapsed, for $10,014,820, after being listed for as much as $12,500,000.

776 Boylston Street
Boston, MA 02116

11. Mandarin Oriental, #W11-B

776 Boylston Street, Boston, MA 02116

We did say that whales beget whales: This 6,111-square-foot, 3-BR, 6-BA condo traded for $9,804,070 in October 2008, and would trade again in February 2012 for $10,300,000.

776 Boylston Street
Boston, MA 02116

12. 96 Beacon Street, PH

96 Beacon Street, Boston, MA

The 6,337-square-foot, 4-BR, 4.5-BA penthouse traded in April 2009 for $9,399,673.

96 Beacon Street
Boston, MA

13. 8 Mount Vernon Place

8 Mount Vernon Place, Boston, MA

The 9,500-square-foot townhouse is one of those whales that begets other whales (as is the way of things in nature): It traded in March 2008 for $9,375,000, and then again in May 2011 for $10,890,000.

8 Mount Vernon Place
Boston, MA

14. 58 Commonwealth Avenue

58 Commonwealth Avenue, Boston, MA

The 9,786-square-foot townhouse's owner a century ago, Henry S. Rowe, was a noted book and bookplates collector. The house traded in July 2010 for $9,350,000.

58 Commonwealth Avenue
Boston, MA

15. 310 Beacon Street, #4

310 Beacon Street, Boston, MA

This $9,200,000 trade in June 2012 involved the two biggest whales in recent Boston real estate history: Tom Brady and Gisele Bundchen were the sellers of the 5,311-square-foot, 3-BR, 3.5-BA duplex that had been asking as much as $10,500,000.

310 Beacon Street
Boston, MA

16. 49-51 Commonwealth Avenue, #C/G

49-51 Commonwealth Avenue, Boston, MA

In a deal that closed Halloween 2003, this whale traded for $9,120,000. It would trade seven years later for $10,800,000.

49-51 Commonwealth Avenue
Boston, MA

17. Mandarin Oriental, #PH1-C

776 Boylston Street, Boston, MA 02116

This spread actually traded for around $960,000 less in May 2010 than what it traded for in September 2008: $9,050,000 vs. $10,014,820. Still, whatta whale!

776 Boylston Street
Boston, MA 02116

18. Mandarin Oriental, #W12-B

776 Boylston Street, Boston, MA 02116

The 4,922-square-foot, 3-BR, 2-BA spread traded in June 2011 for $12,200,000.

776 Boylston Street
Boston, MA 02116

19. 100 Beacon Street, PHB

100 Beacon Street, Boston MA

The 4,083-square-foot, 3-BR, 5-BA penthouse went for an even $9,000,000 in August 2012, well below its asking of $10,500,000.

20. 128 Commonwealth Avenue

128 Commonwealth Avenue, Boston, MA

The most notable owner, perhaps, of the 9,313-square-foot townhouse was Jonas Harrod French, a banker and Union colonel in the Civil War who helped manage the occupation of New Orleans. The house went back and forth between commercial and residential use after French, and was converted into condos, before being converted back into a single-family residence in 2004. It traded in January 2011 for $8,750,000.

128 Commonwealth Avenue
Boston, MA

21. Mandarin Oriental, #W12-B

776 Boylston Street, Boston, MA 02116

The 4,922-square-foot, 3-BR, 2-BA spread traded in October 2008 for $8,700,000. It would trade again in June 2011 for $12,200,000.

776 Boylston Street
Boston, MA 02116

22. 128 Commonwealth Avenue

128 Commonwealth Avenue, Boston, MA

The 9,313-square-foot townhouse sold in June 2004 for $8,650,000 (it would do so again in January 2011 for $8,750,000).

128 Commonwealth Avenue
Boston, MA

23. 56 Beacon Street

56 Beacon Street, Boston, MA

The 8,684-square-foot, 5-BR, 8-BA manse traded for $8,550,000 in January 2004. It's on the market again now for $12,500,000.

56 Beacon Street
Boston, MA

24. 150 Beacon Street, PH

150 Beacon Street, Boston, MA

The building was once home to Alvan Fuller, who ran one of the world's most lucrative car dealership and who served as Massachusetts' governor in the late 1920s. Emerson College owned the building from the 1960s through the 1990s, when it became condos. The penthouse sold in September 2010 for $8,500,000.

150 Beacon Street
Boston, MA

25. Ritz-Carlton, #29E/H

2 Avery Street, Boston, MA

The only sale of the 25 to close outside of Back Bay or Beacon Hill, this 7,216-square-foot spread with five bedrooms traded in March 2008 for $8,500,000.

2 Avery Street
Boston, MA