All month long in July, we’ll survey the changing luxury real estate market, talk to top producers and offer advice on how to level up — all leading to the gathering of the year, Inman Luxury Connect, Aug. 2-3 at the Aria in Las Vegas. Make plans now to join us there.
As Luxury Month unfolds in July, Inman is analyzing the biggest deals between October 2021 — when we last dug into sales — and June 2022, to determine the top home sales nationwide over the past several months. All this week we’ll be breaking down the top mountain, beach and city transactions as well as the top overall sales of 2022 so far. Be sure to check back each day to see the results come in.
Luxury homebuyers have a soft spot for the beach.
Or so it seems, according to Inman’s latest analysis of the top luxury beach sales since October 2021, when we previously crunched the numbers.
Palm Beach remained a popular choice for ultra-luxury buyers as they sought a more tranquil post-pandemic lifestyle in a state with plenty of tax benefits and attractive weather year-round. Out of the top 10 biggest beach transactions since October, four were in Palm Beach or another market in southern Florida.
Still, the Hamptons put up a fight for the title, continuing its post-pandemic comeback with three of the top 10 deals located in the wealthy beach enclave just beyond the luxury glass skyscrapers of New York City.
The following list also reflects a recent buyer preference for brand new homes or land on which to create a blank slate and construct something new.
Here are the top 10 beach deals completed since October 2021, according to an analysis of news sources, databases and previous reporting.
The biggest beach deal to take place since October aptly involved some pretty big names. Making new records, fashion mogul Serge Azria sold his seven-acre Malibu property in November to Silicon Valley-based venture capitalist Marc Andreessen in a $177 million deal. Kurt Rappaport of Westside Estate Agency represented both sides of the deal.
Nestled on Malibu’s coast between Paradise Cove and Escondido Beach Azria and his wife, Florence, completed major renovations to the property over about four years and reportedly shopped it around off-market since late 2020, initially for about $218 million.
The couple may not have raked in quite as much, but the sales price broke previous sales records for California, which had been set by Amazon founder Jeff Bezos in 2020.
Palm Beach, Florida
In an encore appearance, one of the Palm Beach properties that made Inman’s most recent top beach deals last year has made an appearance once again.
Billionaire internet entrepreneur Jim Clark purchased the sweeping 15-acre property in March 2021 from the Ziff publishing family for $94.2 million, only to turn around and get it under contract in mid-June for $173 million, The Wall Street Journal first reported.
Lawrence Moens of Lawrence A. Moens Associates represented both sides of the deal.
Boasting approximately 1,200 feet of ocean frontage, Clark told The Journal the purchase of the property was spontaneous once he and his wife, Kristy, decided to transition into living in Florida more often.
But as 2021 became 2022, the couple decided to stay in New York and remembered there had been another interested buyer at the time they purchased the property. The buyer? Oracle CEO Larry Ellison.
After being put on the market unsuccessfully beginning in 2016, Great Island failed to sell until Douglas Elliman’s Jennifer Leahy snagged the listing in 2021 and closed the deal with the town of Darien, Connecticut, for $100 million in late May 2022.
The 60-acre property located on the Long Island Sound once owned by baking powder entrepreneur William Ziegler includes a Gilded Age mansion, a colonial farmhouse and an equestrian building with an arched tile ceiling designed by Rafael Guastavino, the engineer who created Grand Central Terminal.
Golden Beach, Florida
Tech company InterSystems founder Phillip Ragon swept up three properties in a single $93 million transaction in Golden Beach, Florida at the beginning of June setting a price record for the area.
According to one pair of sellers agents involved in the transaction — Danny Hertzberg and Jon Mann of the Jills Zeder Group at Coldwell Banker Realty — Ragon has plans to demolish the modest homes located on just under two acres with 275 feet of ocean frontage and construct one single-family home on the combined properties.
Pablo Alfaro of Douglas Elliman and Silverlane Realty Inc. also represented separate sellers involved in the transaction. Eloy Carmenate and Mick Duchon of the Corcoran Group also collaborated with Hertzberg and Mann on the deal.
The highest-priced home previously sold in Miami-Dade County — a home on Star Island purchased by hedge fund billionaire Ken Griffin in 2021 — clocked in at $75 million.
This $90 million off-market deal was on a brand new home in the barrier island town of Manalapan on about two acres of land.
Paul Saunders of the hedge fund James River Capital Corp. and his wife Victoria Saunders purchased the vacant lot for about $14.5 million in 2018.
The sellers were represented by Senada Adzem of Douglas Elliman and the buyer, who remains anonymous, was represented by Chris Leavitt and Ashley McIntosh of Douglas Elliman.
The 16,000-square-foot home was designed by the Benedict Bullock Group and includes five bedroom suites, a golf simulator room and an outdoor kitchen and pool. It has access to over 200 feet of direct ocean frontage.
East Hampton, New York
In an effort at simplifying his life, New York financier Ronald Perelman offloaded his Hamptons beachfront mansion in February for $84 million after first listing it for $115 million in September 2021.
The 11,000-square-foot-plus home sits on nearly 10 acres and offers 385 feet of ocean frontage. Herald Grant of Sotheby’s International Realty held the listing.
The sale came amidst Perelman’s declining net worth in recent years in tandem with factors related to the COVID-19 pandemic and his company, makeup giant Revlon, facing serious financial difficulties.
Laguna Beach, California
The sale of this $70 million oceanfront mansion in Laguna Beach set a new record in Orange County.
Hedge-fund manager Joseph Edelman and his wife Susan Lebovitz-Edelman purchased the approximately 1-acre estate from Abalone Point LLC. The individual seller was not identified.
The 18,000-square-foot home features a commercial kitchen, a screening room, a wine cellar, a pool cabana and an all-glass guesthouse. It is one of only 12 oceanfront homes in Abalone Point in Laguna Beach’s Irvine Cove.
The deal, though off-market, was not entirely without drama. In May, a neighbor had filed a lawsuit against the seller claiming they had breached obligations related to the Abalone Point homeowners association, according to court documents. Upon learning of the potential sale of the property to The Edelmans the neighbor tried to use the right of first refusal to instead buy the property, but the seller did not accept the offer.
Jonathon Curci and Rex McKown of Compass represented the buyer and Evan Corkett and Steve High of Villa Real Estate represented the seller.
Southampton, New York
Southampton’s exclusive Meadow Lane saw a $70 million sale this year by Corcoran Group listing agent Tim Davis. The eight-acre estate, which was originally listed at $75 million in June, dates back to the 1920s.
The 22,000-square-foot Tudor-style home boasts 500 feet of beach frontage and was built on a sand dune that couldn’t be rebuilt today, Davis reported to The Wall Street Journal. Nonetheless, the buyer, whom Davis did not identify, intended to conduct extensive renovations to the home as of November, in a sum to exceed $25 million.
The property’s seller was a limited liability company affiliated with Julia Vance Carter, a Hamptons attorney who died in 2014.
East Hampton, New York
Designer and artist Helmut Lang sold his oceanfront Hamptons property in separate parcels to his neighbors for a total of about $70 million in May.
Two years prior, Lang had sold part of the property to his neighbor John B. Hess, CEO of Hess Corp, for $9 million. This time around Hess paid about $30 million for 1.1 acres of the property while Lang’s other neighbor, investor Howard Marks, paid about $40 million for about 1.6 acres.
Lang originally purchased the 3.5-acre property in 1999 for about $15.5 million. It includes the main house, swimming pool, guest house, garage and an artist’s studio.
The deal was conducted off-market and terms of the deal stipulated that Lang is allowed to stay in his home for two more years.
Palm Beach, Florida
Chris Deitz of Compass represented the sale of this $48.5 million spec home just a few streets away from Mar-a-Lago in early April.
The 14,000-square-foot mansion developed by Lion’s View Holdings includes deeded beach access, a pool and cabana and a 1,700-bottle wine cellar.
Originally the home was listed for $42.5 million in 2020 before its completion, according to Zillow. But after a delayed construction timeline partly due to supply chain issues, the market had set on fire such that a price increase was merited. The list price by the time the home had gone under contract had increased to $52.5 million.
The anonymous buyer was represented by Christian Angle of Christian Angle Real Estate.