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Passion for living drives Cliff to top of the business.

Patricia Warburg Cliff awakened her passion for real estate while living in Europe in the late 60s and early 70s. Thanks to a boyfriend who was a developer, she learned the business from the bottom up, marketing luxury properties to an international audience.

When she returned to New York, there was no question about which career she would pursue. Her first foray into Manhattan real estate was at Douglas Elliman, where she worked as a residential broker during the tenure of five owners: Peter Sharp, the Urstadt Family, the Gould family, the Milstein family, who were clients of hers to whom she sold the company, and Insignia. Prior to Elliman's final acquisition by Prudential, Cliff was lured by Barbara Corcoran, to join The Corcoran Group. Barbara's incredible tenacity and brilliant imagination and creativity made her offer irresistible.

At the inception of her New York real estate career, Cliff consulted with Aristotle Onassis on the planning of Olympic Tower, Manhattan's first luxury post-war condominium development. She was subsequently involved in the planning of Museum Tower, the award winning condominium building adjacent to the Museum of Modern Art, with the Charles Shaw Company. Cliff's keen eye and market sensibility have made her a frequent advisor to major New York developers, who often query her on potential purchases of development sites, layouts and amenities for their upcoming projects.

A senior vice president at Corcoran, where she also serves as director of European Sales, Cliff is recognized around the world as a leading expert on the New York City residential real estate market: luxury pre-war cooperatives, new condominium development, townhouses and smaller investment properties. Her facility in five foreign languages, helps her to give equal attention to individuals from around the world seeking primary residences, foreign buyers looking for luxury pied-a-terres and investors seeking to acquire a carefully chosen portfolio of properties. As an attorney licensed to practice in New York State, she brings an extra depth of knowledge, analytical skills and expertise to her negotiations.

Cliff's annual sales, which regularly exceed $100 million per year, consistently rank her among Corcoran's top 10 brokers, out of a field of more than 2,000. Working in conjunction with her husband and partner, Karl yon Frieling, a former international management consultant, Cliff heads up what she feels is the optimal sized mini-group within Corcoran: herself, a partner, an administrative assistant, a broker assistant and a chauffeur. She feels that many residential broker teams have grown large and unwieldy and lost the personal touch with clients, while the era of solo brokers without backup is a thing of the past. Cliff prides herself on the very individualized 24/7 service that the "Cliff Partnership" is able to deliver.

The Cliff Partnership has recently expanded its sphere to include the marketing of boutique condominium developments, both ground up and renovated pre-war structures. The skill set required to successfully bring these unique properties to market is a perfect match for their marketing and analytical skills.

Over the years, Cliff has taught a number of courses at the NYU Real Estate Institute. She enjoys mentoring young people, especially those aspiring to careers in residential real estate. She established the much sought after course: "Selling Cooperatives and Condominiums" at the Institute which has continued on their curriculum since she initiated it in the mid '80s.

Patricia Cliff's ambition and expertise have been the springboard to her success, but underneath a tough and elegant exterior, there is a very gentle, sensitive woman who suffered the terrible loss of her only child, Kenneth Johnson, to the ravages of Bi-Polar illness. After Kenneth tragically took his life in 1995, she dedicated herself to educating the public about the etiology of mental illness and its treatment. Patricia and Karl donated the funding to establish the Kenneth Johnson Memorial Research Library at NAMI-NYC Metro, the National Alliance on Mental Illness, which now houses more than 1000 books, videos and journals, as well as up to date technology for research.

The Library annually sponsors a Book Awards Breakfast each May to honor writers who have written works of literary merit which better educate the public about the understanding, care and treatment of mental illness. Prior winners of the "Ken Book Award" have included such literary notables as Wally Lamb, Kay Jamison, Sherwin Nuland, Rick Moody, Harold Koplewicz and Jane Pauley.

Born to a family that instilled philanthropic values, Cliff has embraced a commitment to tithing a minimum of 10% of her income to worthy causes which include, medical research, education, housing for those with disabilities and environmental protection. Her fervent passionate wish, however, is to have been instrumental in finding a cure for menial illness.
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Title Annotation:PROFILE IN RESIDENTIAL: Patricia Warburg Cliff, senior vice president & director of European sales, the Corcoran Group
Comment:Passion for living drives Cliff to top of the business.(PROFILE IN RESIDENTIAL: Patricia Warburg Cliff, senior vice president & director of European sales, the Corcoran Group)
Publication:Real Estate Weekly
Date:Apr 25, 2007
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