Topshop founder’s waterfront Miami Beach home sells for $15M

Buyer owns home next door, giving it 0.7 acres on Di Lido Island

The late Ralph Halpern and 617 East Dilido Drive (Google Maps, Getty)
The late Ralph Halpern and 617 East Dilido Drive (Google Maps, Getty)

The home of the late British high street retail mogul Sir Ralph Halpern sold for $15 million in an off-market sale to a buyer who is assembling land.

Halpern’s estate, represented by Michael Halpern, sold the waterfront property at 617 East Dilido Drive in Miami Beach, to a trust led by attorney Patrick Venne, records show.

Halpern died in August.

Halpern was a founder of Topshop and led the retail conglomerate the Burton Group from the 1970s to the 1990s, according to an obituary in WWD. The Burton Group later became Arcadia Group.

The 4,400-square-foot Miami Beach house, on the Venetian Islands, was built in 1948. It has four bedrooms, five bathrooms, a pool and dock. Halpern paid $2.2 million for the two-story house in 2004, according to property records. It sits on a 0.4-acre site.

The buyer, managed by Venne, financed the purchase with a $15 million mortgage from Professional Bank. The same trust purchased the adjacent home at 625 Dilido Drive in January via a quit claim deed.

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That means the trust, which could knock the homes down for a new mansion, controls about 0.7-acres of contiguous waterfront land on Di Lido Island. Venne is general counsel for the real estate firm the Federated Companies, which has offices in Miami and Boston.

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Despite the overall slowdown in residential sales, the Venetian Islands have experienced a handful of record sales this year.

This summer, a venture capitalist sold his waterfront Di Lido Island home for $26.3 million, or a Venetian Islands record of more than $4,900 per square foot. That deal marked the third time the property traded in less than two years.

In May, Crisp CEO Are Traasdahl and his designer wife Siri Willoch Traasdahl sold their waterfront Rivo Alto home for $31.5 million, which set a record for the island chain.

More recently, crime journalist and mystery writer Edna Buchanan sold her waterfront home on San Marino Island, also part of the Venetians, for $12 million in another off-market deal to a trust managed by attorney Richard Wood.