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Sotheby’s Realty comes to Bellevue

One of the nation’s biggest names in real estate, Sotheby’s International Realty, will be launching a new office in downtown Bellevue this week, tapping into western Washington’s luxury property market.

On June 19, Bellevue’s Joseph Brazen Real Estate will merge with Sotheby’s, working under the name Brazen Sotheby’s International.

Joseph Brazen Real Estate, which has 12 associates, has sold properties in the Eastside and greater Seattle area for 29 years.

The Bellevue office will be Sotheby’s first venture in Washington state.

According to Sotheby’s Public Relations director, Jennifer Zimmerman, the international realtor has been looking to open a franchise in the Northwest for quite some time.

“[Bellevue] is the only representation we will have for Washington. This region has been on our target for awhile,” she said.

It had been rumored that company owner and namesake Joseph Brazen would open a second office on Mercer Island; however, his PR representative said this will no longer happen. As of now, Bellevue will be the sole Washington location.

Sotheby’s International Realty, founded on the East Coast in 1976, offers a collection of luxury homes, estates and properties for sale throughout the world. Its father company, Sotheby’s, is the world’s oldest international auction house in continuous operation.

With its focus on high-end real estate (from $1 million to more than $50 million), Brazen Sotheby’s International will undoubtedly represent properties on Mercer Island.

D’Ann Jackson, managing broker at John L. Scott Real Estate on Mercer Island, said the company would welcome the competition.

“Competition is a good thing. It will just make everybody be on their toes,” she said. “Sotheby’s is very well known. It’s all about relationships.”

Brazen Sotheby’s International will be located on Main Street in Downtown Bellevue in the same building where Brazen Real Estate has been for seven years.

Until this week, Sotheby’s current West Coast representation has been limited to California, with offices in Beverly Hills and Santa Monica. The company also has a franchise in British Columbia, Canada, among more than 30 other international locations.

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