UPDATED, Jan. 14, 2021, 6:10 p.m.: Brooklyn has cracked the $25 million club.
Billionaire Vincent Viola and his wife Theresa have sold their sprawling Brooklyn Heights mansion for $25.5 million, according to property records, smashing the borough’s record for the most expensive home ever sold. The deal works out to roughly $2,202 per square foot.
The couple bought the property at 8 Montague Terrace in 2007 for $8 million. They have since converted the 1875-era building from a multifamily rental into a palatial single-family home that spans 11,580 square feet over four floors, plus a 250-square-foot roof deck.
They sold the renovated home to a domestic Delaware-based limited partnership dubbed M8T, in a sale that closed Christmas Eve. The unknown buyer went into contract about a month earlier on Nov. 25.
The Violas’ transaction appears to be an off-market deal. Douglas Elliman’s Linsday Barton Barrett represented the Violas in the sale. She did not comment but claimed the deal on StreetEasy.
Attorney Andrea Riina of Wachtell Lipton Rosen & Katz represented M8T in the deal and declined to comment. Riina’s previous clients include Michael Dell, who she represented in his 2014 purchase of a $100.47 million penthouse at Extell Development’s One57 in Manhattan.
Prior to the sale of the Viola mansion, the $20.3 million sale of a condo at Quay Tower in Brooklyn Heights was the priciest in the borough. The deal at the property developed by RAL Development Services, Vanke US and Oliver’s Realty Group, closed in April last year. Before that, actor Matt Damon’s $16.7 million purchase of a penthouse at DDG and Westbrook Properties’ condo in the same neighborhood held the record.
Brooklyn townhouses have been driving the borough’s luxury market since the pandemic began in March. Last week, the average price per square foot for townhouses asking over $2 million in the borough was $880 — a far cry from M8T’s buy of the Violas’ manse.
Viola, who owns the Florida Panthers and is the founder and CEO of high-frequency trading firm Virtu Financial, has been on a bit of a buying and selling spree. He bought two condos at the Auberge Beach Residences & Spa Fort Lauderdale last year for $10 million. (One of the Auberge units is listed on property records as the couple’s address.)
The couple is also looking to sell their Upper East Side mansion. The property at 12 East 69th Street has been on and off the market and dropped its asking price to $79 million from $88 million a year ago. It was originally listed for $114 million.
Viola, who was President Donald Trump’s first nominee for Secretary of the U.S. Army before he withdrew, has an estimated net worth of $2.6 billion, according to Forbes. He could not be immediately reached for comment.
His firm Virtu announced yesterday that it plans to set up an office in Palm Beach Gardens in Florida and shrink its New York office footprint by 75 percent.
Update: This story has been updated to include the Violas’ listing agent.