Hedge fund billionaire Steven Schonfeld and his wife bought a sprawling Palm Beach estate for $111 million, making it the most expensive home ever sold in Florida.
Schonfeld, founder of New York-based Schonfeld Strategic Advisors, closed Tuesday on the 6-acre estate known as La Reverie, according to a spokesman.
The estate, sold by hair-care mogul Sydell Miller, has more than 70,000 square feet of living space, with 11 bedrooms, 22 bathrooms, a bowling alley, salon, spa, ice cream stand and candy parlor. It had been listed for $200 million.
The sale beats a Florida record set this summer, when an estate owned by the late Broadway producer Terry Allen Kramer sold to an unknown buyer for $110.3 million.
Schonfeld, his wife and three kids will use the home as a vacation property and don't plan to move from New York, according to a spokesman. The family also has a $90 million estate in Old Westbury, New York, as well as an apartment on Manhattan's Park Avenue and a penthouse in Palm Beach's Bellaria luxury condo building.
La Reverie will instantly give the Schonfelds a top trophy property in one of the richest enclaves in the country. Built in 2001, the French-style megahome is located on an exclusive stretch of Palm Beach called Billionaire's Row, which starts at Donald Trump's Mar-a-Lago Club and includes the estates of other titans of finance, including Ken Griffin, Paul Tudor Jones and Steve Shwarzman.
La Reverie stretches from the ocean to the Intracoastal Waterway, with 350 feet of beachfront and 233 feet on the waterway.
Even with the $111 million price tag, the Schonfelds are still planning to do some work on the home. It will be designed and decorated by Michelle Gerson Interiors and Schonfeld's wife, Brooke.
The deal went into contract this past summer, but closed Tuesday, according to the spokesman.
The sale is the latest sign of a strong real estate market in southern Florida, as a growing number of retirees from the Northeast flock to the Sunshine State.
The new tax law, which caps state and local tax deductions, has also led to reports of a growing number of wealthy taxpayers from New York, New Jersey and Connecticut moving to Florida to lower their tax bills. Average sale prices for single-family homes in Miami set a record in the third quarter of $330,000. Prices for luxury homes in Fort Lauderdale, Palm Beach and Boca Raton were all up more than 20% in the quarter.
Florida real estate brokers said the start to the prime winter-selling season has been one of the strongest in years.
"The activity is tremendous," said Jay Phillip Parker, chief executive of Douglas Elliman's Florida brokerage business. "Our sales galleries are full, our agents are being pulled in multiple directions, and we're seeing a lot of real closings."