Belfast Telegraph

Eddie Irvine's £19.25m Florida pad is unveiled

By Claire McNeilly

He has never been a man to hide the trappings of his wealth - and former Formula One racing driver Eddie Irvine is certainly making a bold statement with his latest Florida pad.

The Ulsterman has been given the green light to build a two-storey waterfront mansion which, when finished next year, will be worth an eye-watering £19.25m.

The new property, in the exclusive Hibiscus Island area of Miami, will have a formal living room, media room, library, bar and 140 feet of water frontage.

It will feature high-end Miele appliances, a family room master suite, swimming pool, spa, summer kitchen and private balconies.

It's not yet known if the former racing driver from Conlig in Co Down is building it for his own use, but if he sells it on for the listed price he'll make a tidy profit.

According to Miami-Dade County property records, Irvine's company, Casa Ischia, paid £3.34m for the 18,375-square-foot lot three years ago. Even by the standards of Hibiscus Island, an exclusive Miami Beach residential neighbourhood, Irvine's house is spectacular.

The area is a haven for rich Europeans seeking holiday homes but, so far, the most expensive has sold for just over £5m.

Irvine, who will turn 50 in November, was a successful property dealer even before he retired from F1 in 2002.

He is understood to have a portfolio of more than 50 houses and apartments around the world.

The former Ferrari ace, listed as the fifth richest person in Northern Ireland in 2006, has made most of his estimated £55m personal fortune in property.

In 2013 he capitalised on an improving market to sell three Florida homes worth £19.1m, as well as a £3.9m beach house.

In May Irvine reportedly sold a luxury property in Miami Beach for a cool $10.5m (£7.1m).

The 6,612sq ft home is based on the secluded Venetian Islands estate.

Irvine never lived in the home, but did offer it for rent at $100,000 a month.

The property boasts stunning panoramic views around Biscayne Bay.

He put his luxury home in Dalkey - featuring an outdoor pool linking to an indoor lagoon, a party-size Jacuzzi with impressive views over Dublin Bay and its own cinema room - on the market last year with a price tag of £2.83m. It had previously been on offer for £4.6m.

There are other properties in Dublin, Milan, Ibiza and the Caribbean, where 'Fast Eddie' is developing a luxury complex on the Exuma islands.

Irvine has also invested closer to home in Jenkinson shipping, the Eddie Irvine Sports complex in Bangor and an online printing group.

And there have been the usual trappings of an international playboy, including £11.4m superyacht Anaconda, formerly owned by Romanian dictator Nicolae Ceausescu, a Dassault Falcon private jet, numerous Ferrari sports cars and an AS 350 helicopter.

He is still believed to be Northern Ireland's richest sports person, although he is likely to be overtaken by the world's number one golfer Rory McIlroy within the next couple of years.

Belfast Telegraph


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