Finding a leader who can guide one of the world’s longest-running and most successful luxury real estate marketing programs took patience and careful consideration — but the Coldwell Banker® executive team finally landed on their next vice president of luxury: Michael Altneu.
A luxury veteran of more than 15 years, Altneu has settled into the role with ease, drawing upon his experience working in new development, technology, brokerage, design and development, public relations and creative. He has collaborated with dozens of top agents both domestically and internationally, and has a track record of driving growth through brand portfolio global expansion plans and exemplary recruitment from his time with Douglas Elliman, DBOX creative agency and REALM GLOBAL. He previously served as a co-creative director for Madison Avenue Creative. He may even look familiar to you, thanks to his appearances on Bravo’s “Million Dollar Listing” and “Wheel of Fortune.”
A New Jersey native, Altneu currently resides in Los Angeles — long considered a major U.S. luxury epicenter and “central to many global hubs and markets within the Coldwell Banker network,” he says. We recently caught up with the marketing guru/strategist virtually at his home office, where we sought answers to a range of questions from his ultimate dream home to his long-term vision for the Coldwell Banker Global Luxury® program.
Coldwell Banker Global Luxury What are three words that best describe you?
Michael Altneu Passionate, dedicated, and determined.
Coldwell Banker Global Luxury What was your first job?
Michael Altneu I was a sales associate at Banana Republic in Woodcliff Lake, New Jersey. I miss the employee discount!
Coldwell Banker Global Luxury If you were not in luxury real estate, what would you be doing?
Michael Altneu I would most likely be a doctor. I’ve been an EMT since I was 17, volunteering in different capacities, and have always had a love for medicine.
Coldwell Banker Global Luxury Hidden talent?
Michael Altneu I can give vaccination shots!
Coldwell Banker Global Luxury Best advice you ever got?
Michael Altneu The best advice I ever got was from my mother. I continue to get the best advice from her. She told me to work hard and stay humble, never forget to pay it forward, help others reach success, and stop thinking about the “what-ifs” and focus on “what is.”
Coldwell Banker Global Luxury Greatest accomplishment?
Michael Altneu Being awarded EMT of the Year by the Valley Hospital in Ridgewood, New Jersey. Knowing that my actions directly saved someone else’s life.
Coldwell Banker Global Luxury What was the most valuable life lesson you were ever taught?
Michael Altneu The most valuable life lesson I was ever taught was taught to me through experiences and life lessons. It was to simply live every day to the fullest for who knows what tomorrow holds. Say how you feel, let others know you love them, take the trip you’ve always wanted to take and never look back with regret.
Coldwell Banker Global Luxury What does luxury mean to you?
Michael Altneu If you asked me this question 18 months ago, I would have had a very different answer, one that might have been more routed in wealth. My definition of luxury has shifted, as I am sure it did for all of us. To me, luxury is the ability to partake in experiences that evoke an emotional connection of joy and happiness. It is individual in nature, ever changing, rooted in appreciation and driven by passion. It’s quite simply the ability to enjoy all aspects of life.
Coldwell Banker Global Luxury What’s your ultimate dream home?
Michael Altneu Without question, a Caribbean oceanfront estate! I dream of being able to wake up and fall asleep to the sounds of the waves and to walk outside every morning and see the crystal-blue waters reflecting as the sun rises and falls.
Coldwell Banker Global Luxury What are you most looking forward to in your new role at Coldwell Banker?
Michael Altneu I’m most looking forward to working with so many talented and industry-leading professionals across the globe.
Coldwell Banker Global Luxury What are your goals for 2021 and beyond?
Michael Altneu My goal for 2021 and beyond is to build on the already strong foundation that exists and strengthen our agents’ abilities in the years to come. Our clients have shown us that their priorities and definition of luxury have shifted during the pandemic, and we are tracking new trends emerging in the luxury sector. Leading the Coldwell Banker Global Luxury program, my vision is clear: to innovate, to embrace creativity, to strengthen community and to be a step ahead in all that we do.