There had been hopes property investor Stephen Burcher’s Rose Bay waterfront may smash the record for a home sold at auction today, but it has passed in for $23,250,000. .
The Agency’s Ben Collier looked to have five registered to bid for the luxurious five-bedroom, five-bathroom home with gun barrel harbour views to the city skyline, Opera House and Harbour Bridge at 20B Tivoli Ave — the home of property investor Stephen Burcher and his wife, Melissa.
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Bidding started with a vendor bid of $23 million and that was quickly followed by the only real bid of $23,250,000 by a local Chinese family.
The 3.45 pm auction, with auctioneer Thomas McGlynn presiding, was closed to media, and even rival sales agents from different firms weren’t permitted to enter the on-site auction.
The next test of the auction record is in March, when the Vaucluse home of Alex Ma goes under the hammer. That has a price guide of $30 million.
Among those seen to go in to today’s auction were the prominent buyer’s agent Simon Cohen. About 60 people — mostly neighbours and other interested parties — jammed into the living room with the sensational harbour view.
The home was originally set to be sold in an expressions of interest campaign ending on Friday.
But with multiple parties keen on the prized home, last Tuesday Mr Collier and the Burchers decided to put it to auction.
Apart from being a remarkable property with all the best finishes, it has a resort-like pool and even access to a sandy beach.
With their kids grown up, the Burchers want to spend more time at their $12 million Palm Beach home – purchased last year – and on their boat ‘Quantum’.
Mr Collier is on the lookout for a Paddington or Woollahra bolthole for them.
The previous record of $23 million was set in 2009 when Bellevue Hill’s grand Georgian house Le Manoir sold to Lachlan Murdoch.
Auctioneer Damien Cooley had done the honours then. “Lachlan was there in the room when I knocked it down to him,” Mr Cooley remembers.
Then comes the $20.32 million achieved last year, when the art collector John Schaeffer sold the Bellevue Hill Bonnington mansion to fund manager Ari Droga and his wife, Lisa, an architect.
The auction was one of 646 properties scheduled to go to auction today on what was considered the first big test of the year.
The number of homes going under the hammer is well down on almost 1000 on the corresponding weekend last year.