What was once the most expensive real estate listing in the area has become the most expensive residential property sale ever in the region.
Longboat Key’s Serenissima estate – “most serene” in Italian – sold recently for $16.5 million, eclipsing the previous record selling price by a dollar less than $3.5 million. A home on the northern end of Longboat Key in July sold for $13 million + $1, breaking the previous record by $1.
Michael Moulton of Michael Saunders & Co. handled the sale, which closed Monday, for owners Michele and Mike McKee and was the property's only listing agent.
Rich Polese of Fine Properties represented the buyers, who were not identified by name. The buyers, a retired chairman and CEO of a Fortune 500 company and his wife, will be relocating from out of state. Public documents pertaining to the sale have not yet been posted.
“It is a great honor to represent the sellers of this record-setting, residential transaction. A home like this creates an exciting showing process…the exacting structural elements, intricate design details, breathtaking décor, immense size and especially the water views,” Moulton said in a news release. “I had worked with the sellers on a prior real estate transaction and was delighted that based on that experience they trusted me to guide them through the complex process of selling their impressive estate, screening those interested, and navigating them through the many details that go into the transition of ownership for such an outstanding home.”
“It was a thrill to work on behalf of my clients for one of the Suncoast’s most exclusive properties,” Polese said.
Situated on 1.18 acres in the Regent Court section of the gated Longboat Key Club, Serenissima made waves in March 2017 when it went on the market for $26.5 million, higher than any previous residential property in Sarasota, Manatee or Charlotte counties. The most recent asking price was $19.75 million.
Finished in a Venetian style, Serenissima (845 Longboat Club Road) features a wide range of luxury features including a grand salon that can accommodate 100 people, a 10-seat home theater, a sun room alongside the pool and a five-car garage. The 19,000-square-foot home has six bedrooms and six-and-a-half baths.
One flight up from the first living level are a pair of master suites, along with an office and sitting room. Staircases are formed with solid slabs of marble. There’s also an elevator.
On the third floor are guest quarters with adjoining bathrooms and spaces suited for movie-watching, game-playing or reading.
The McKees purchased the property in 1998 for $2.15 million, and the home was built in 2005.
Two doors to the south, Villa del Sogno (825 Longboat Club Road) sold this month for $10.5 million. That home had once been listed for $20 million in 2016 and had been most recently on the market at an asking price of $12 million.
According to a November report of the Gulf Coast luxury market, there have been 89 sales of single-
family homes over $3 million across the Sarasota, Manatee, and Charlotte counties. Michael Saunders & Co. agents were involved in 52% of those transactions.
“It is rare that a single agent has the privilege of retaining a listing for such an extended period. That alone speaks to the caliber of service Michael offers to his customers,” said Michael Saunders, founder and CEO of Michael Saunders & Co. “As with any home that owners have poured their heart and soul into, it is important for an agent to understand the emotional element involved. What began as a business relationship quickly transformed into a personal one in which both parties had a mutually passionate interest in finding just the right buyer for this very special residence.”