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Landmarked home at 550 S. Ocean fetches $11.5M

Posted On: 04-06-2013

By Darrell Hofheinz

Daily News Real Estate Writer

Carolyn Lee Andrews has sold her longtime winter home at 550 S. Ocean Blvd. for a recorded $11.5 million. The landmarked oceanfront property was the second prominent Maurice Fatio-designed house in the Estate Section to sell within a week.

The buyer was a Florida limited liability company named 550 South Ocean Blvd. LLC with a South Flagler Drive address in West Palm Beach, according to the deed recorded Tuesday by the Palm Beach County Clerk’s office.

Paul E. Simonson is manager of that entity, according to state business records, which list the same address for it as the one on the deed. Records show that Simonson and the address — Suite 900 at 505 S. Flagler Drive — are affiliated with a number of real estate and investment companies. He could not be reached for comment.

Real estate agent Cam Kirkwood of Coastal Sotheby’s International Realty in Palm Beach Gardens, who represented Andrews in the sale, had originally priced the house at $18 million but later dropped the price to $16.8 million. He also acted on Andrews’ behalf in her recent purchase of a condominium in Via Delfino on Singer Island, where she moved this week, Andrews said Tuesday. The deed for that transaction has not yet been recorded.

Reached Wednesday, Kirkwood said a confidentiality agreement prevented him and Andrews from commenting about specific details of the sale or the parties involved. Kirkwood’s agency was the only one involved in the deal, according to the “closed” listing for the property in the Regional Multiple Listing Service.

Andrews said she will miss her Mediterranean-style house, which was built in 1930.

“I loved it, but it was just too much for me,” she said. “I didn’t cry when I drove away. I just thanked God that I was able to live in there.”

In December 1986, Andrews and her ex-husband, Neal L. Andrews Jr., had paid a recorded $1.89 million for the house directly across South Ocean Boulevard from the beach, property records show. Carolyn Andrews assumed sole ownership of it in 1998.

Carolyn Andrews oversaw renovations at the residence, which has five bedrooms and 10,328 square feet of living space inside and out.

Built of coral keystone with an L-shaped floor plan, the house stands on a lot measuring nearly half an acre with its front door facing Via Marina, about a quarter-mile south of Worth Avenue. The two wings meet at a three-story tower with a guest room at the top.

A previous owner had installed the mercury-backed beveled-mirrored walls in the “petit salon” off the living room, as well as the downstairs powder room’s floral wallpaper, said to date from 1730, Andrews told the Daily News last year.

“When I bought the house, Gracie from New York called me and said if I was going to change the paper, they’d take it because it was so valuable,” she, referring to the venerable wallpaper manufacturer and importer.

The extensively landscaped backyard features a 20-by-45-foot saltwater pool and terraced gardens. A second-story veranda atop the loggia faces the pool area.

The house was built for Dr. Daniel J. McCarthy of Germantown, Pa., who named it Villa Blarney after Castle Blarney near Cork, Ireland. Carolyn Andrews, a ballroom dancer, had rechristened it Villa Amante del Baile (“lover of the dance”).

An Alabama native who has another home in Birmingham, Andrews and her ex-husband were behind Pasquale Food Co., which helped develop the market for fresh pizzas, pasta and similar items in grocery-store delicatessens. The Birmingham company was acquired in 1987 for a reported $167 million in shares by a Canadian brewery and food company, John Labatt Ltd., owner of Labatt Breweries.


Source: Darrell Hofheinz, April 5, 2013, Palm Beach Daily News


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