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D e h t t



Stan Gale Sr.

tan Gale Sr.’s first love was soccer. After a broken ankle, however, his dream of playing professionally was derailed. Instead, in 1974 he joined the family business: Daniel Gale Realty, a Long Island–based residential brokerage founded by his grandfather in 1922 that’s now part of Sotheby’s International Realty. But after less than five years, he switched gears and flipped to the commercial side of the business, starting at Grubb & Ellis. Then in 1985 he started a company focused on the suburban commercial market. In 2001 he launched his current development firm, Gale International, and in 2006 he sold his suburban business to Mack-Cali in a $545 million transaction. Gale International has 20 employees in New York, more than 100 in South Korea and China and two in California. Among the feathers in its cap is Songdo City — a massive environmentally conscious “mini-city” being erected outside Incheon, South Korea, at an estimated cost of more than $45 billion. Closer to home, there’s a condo project at 21 West 20th Street, where units priced up to $35 million hit the market in December. Last month, Gale showed TRD around his Madison Avenue office. B y J ulie S trickland

Arsenal team logo


During college, Gale studied abroad in London

Although he makes frequent trips to South Korea

for a semester in 1970. Two years later, he began

for work, Gale’s real love is for coastal destinations

avidly following London’s Arsenal soccer team

like the Maldives. “I want to go see Eastern

after they won the national championship.

Europe, the Mediterranean coast,” he said. “I love anything ocean-oriented.”

Long Island map Time capsule When Songdo opens, a time capsule from the original construction site in 2004 will be unsealed. The metal casing encloses timepieces from Gale’s Seoul office, signed notes from the day construction began and

Tower model

This historic map of the Gale

The Northeast Asia Trade

family home on the North Shore

Tower, a work in progress in

of Long Island sits behind his

Songdo, will be South Korea’s

desk. He estimates that the

tallest building, at 68 stories,

map, a gift from his parents, is

upon completion this year. “It’s

between 75 and 100 years old.

the welcoming beacon from the

“My grandfather marketed the

brand new, beautiful airport,”

area up by the water here, where

Gale said.

my 92-year-old mother lives

other items of the day.

today,” he said.

Brother’s catamaran

Cosmos soccer ball Gale’s passion for soccer began in grade school. In 1971 he

All the Gale children grew

attended the U.S. Olympic regional tryouts at Emory University.

up on the water, clamming,

He also tried out for the New York Cosmos in 1973, but didn’t

fishing and sailing. His

make either team.

brother’s boat, a catamaran, is named Wild Whiskers.

Whale sculpture Fashioned by a Korean artist, the whale sculpture is a model

Korean medals

of a larger version in Songdo’s

Central Park, which

replicates the slightly more famous

New York park. The

sculpture combines the whale —

Gale International built Songdo City in partnership with Posco,

of the Gale family business

a multinational steel company, and the Korean government. The

historical emblem of Posco —

partners spent five years planning the city, which will officially

steelworks that symbolize how

open in 2018, when South Korea hosts the Winter Olympics.

companies “came together

Gale received this presidential award and honorary citizenship

through the seas.”

a symbol and


along with the two

at Incheon after Songdo was designated a United Nations Green Fund City in 2012. 22 June 2014

PHOTOGRAPH OF Stan Gale Sr. FOR THE REAL DEAL BY Christian Fernandez

Desk of June  
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