Sotheby’s International Realty
Sharq Tower - Safat Square
15 Ahmed Al Jaber Street
Kuwait City, Kuwait 13057
Michael Bolla is CEO of Sotheby’s International Realty Kuwait, chief investment analyst of Sotheby’s International Realty UAE, and a senior global advisor with Sotheby’s International Realty – East Side Manhattan Brokerage.
Michael manages international real estate portfolios for royal families in the Gulf, oversees acquisitions and divestitures throughout the US and EMEA regions, and structures capital investments and joint venture partnerships for these families.
He employs a cultural yet analytic approach to acquisitions and divestitures.
Fundamental to all his strategic decisions is always a well-researched, comprehensive understanding of the real estate markets he is working and a sharp focus on the real property laws and regulations in those markets. He practices a patient long term approach to investment and careful attention to the geopolitical conditions which affect the assets he is buying or selling for his clients.
Michael lives in Kuwait, holds a B.A. in finance and economics from Bernard M. Baruch College and continued his studies at Columbia University’s Graduate School of Architecture, Planning, and Preservation.
He is a highly valued real estate investment counselor to the Al Sabah family, numerous celebrities, and real estate developers/investors.
Above all, he structures his work as a research and financial analyst with an emphasis on real property in the EMEA region and approaches each job or project from that vantage.
Dr. Alexandra Kleiners’ educational background, consisting of a Ph.D. in Law from Ludwig Maximilian University in Munich, and an M.B.L (Masters in Business Law) from H.S.G. (Hochschule St. Gallen), combined with her extensive Law experience at Deutsche Pfandbriefbank AG, Clifford Chance, and FMS Value Management, make her an indispensable asset to any team she joins.
Dr. Kleiner not only has an in-depth understanding of Law and Business, but has also proven to possess a malleable skill set, as shown by her experience working alongside the COO & Board of Directors, managing international projects, like general assemblies, implementing international HR Strategies, and managing internal communication procedures.
Shaikha Paula Al Sabah oversees the acquisitions and development of real estate for her family office, which invests and develops assets in the United States and the Middle East, North Africa, and Europe.
Shaikha Paula has built the Dar Noor art collection, a significant curation that establishes an aesthetic dialogue between cultures and time periods.
Like real estate, she has never bought art solely for profit. However, she cautions, “If I buy art or property, it must be a good investment. I really do my homework before I invest in anything. I don’t think it’s fair to throw away money, especially when it’s family money. I don’t throw away money on anything, and my money is for my children & grandchildren.”
My husband and family have always supported my decisions because they know every decision I take is well informed. But I still always discuss significant purchases out of respect. Ultimately I am buying for my children and our trusts.”
“Our investment in Sotheby’s was no different. It is to ensure we are once again involved in a meaningful investment. I could not participate in a venture that did not have a higher purpose. I don’t sell things. If I am involved, it is to further a conversation I think is valid and meaningful” offers Sheikha Paula, “My life’s work has been devoted to the development of respect and understanding between East and West. In this venture, I want the people we represent to be assured the proper due diligence is being performed, and they are also making wise decisions for their children.”
Her homes in America, Europe, the Middle East, & North Africa are built to bring her family together on every continent they live and showcase art that is curated to promote cultural understandings for her family to grow and learn from, and for her guests to witness how art can provide inspiration and understanding.
“Every one of my homes are curated experiences with an emphasis on making my children, grandchildren, and guests feel comfortable, welcome, and at home. People are often surprised at how child friendly my homes are despite the importance of the pieces. When children grow up with art they learn to value and understand it. This is my philosophy and has become the reality for my family.”
Shaikha is also passionately engaged with design. Shaikha Paula has enjoyed creative collaborations with renowned designers and architects all around the world.
Her beloved Dar Noor in Kuwait is an architectural feat. The marriage of scale, proportion, purpose, and comfort are unmatchable. Visitors are guided through vast Invalides and rooms with great works of art curated to inspire and welcome guests from every corner of the world and enable them to feel at home in Kuwait.
Shaikha Paula’s philanthropic work is extensive. She is a founding board member of Art Dubai and the Kuwait-based Early Learning Disability Center, a board member of Robert Wilson’s Watermill Center in New York, Arts Arena in Paris, and START, an NGO that runs art workshops for refugees, orphans, and children with special needs across the Middle East and India. She serves on the advisory board of Canvas magazine and the council of London’s Serpentine Gallery.
In 1974 Shaikha Paula moved to Kuwait with her husband, the diplomat Shaikh Mubarak Jaber al Ahmad al Sabah. Together they have six children and 14 grandchildren. She holds a degree in child psychology from New York University (NYU).