The Lowdown on High-Rises

The Martin, formerly Panorama Tower North, recently unveiled its $3 million makeover, dashing its icy corporate style to create a warmer, community-minded residential space. The move, choreographed by Los Angeles design firm the Kor Group, was initiated to entice more buyers to the site just west of CityCenter.

But the high-rise market has a lot of people guessing. Forty-four units sold at the Martin last year at an average per square-foot price of $307, considerably higher than competing properties Allure and Sky. Martin sales staff claim strong interest—they hope to double sales this year. About 134 of 374 units have sold so far.

If you subtract CityCenter’s initial surge of 434 units sold in 2010, the past two years have had virtually identical high-rise sales figures of about 1,300, according to The website’s managing member, Marc Ehrlich, estimates roughly 5,900 units, or 45 percent of the total Valley high-rise condo stock, is still unsold. In addition, he sees another 4,000 units owned “at a basis well in excess of current values”—a situation that “could result in future foreclosures or distressed sales.”

So if you don’t land a Martin condo this year, there could be plenty more high-rise units to choose from for years to come.