Developer Glenn Straub prepares to bid on former Versace mansion

09/13/2013 5:37 PM

09/13/2013 5:56 PM

Glenn Straub, a developer who owns the Palm Beach Polo and Country Club, is preparing to bid for the former Versace mansion, which is set to be auctioned Tuesday in a federal bankruptcy proceeding.

Palm Beach Polo filed a notice of appearance with the U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Miami on Friday, lining up to participate in the auction, which will be held at the spectacular 10-bedroom, 11-bath estate at 1116 Ocean Drive, Miami Beach.

According to his attorney, Luis Salazar, Straub has met the court’s conditions to bid by ponying up a $3-million deposit and demonstrating the wherewithal to pay at least $40 million.

In a statement Straub’s attorney, Luis Salazar, said “Straub has tremendous financial strength to bid’’

The debt holder, VM South Beach LLC, has put in a stalking-horse bid of $25 million itself, setting a minimum for other bidders. The sale will include the property fully furnished.

The current owner, Peter Loftin, put Casa Casuarina LLC, the company that owns the property, in Chapter 11 bankruptcy proceedings on July 1 in a bid to stave off creditors’ efforts to appoint a receiver. The parties soon afterward agreed to the auction.

VM South Beach LLC, which acquired the mortgage on the property in December 2011 from a German bank, WestLB, has reason to want the property: It is affiliated with the Nakash family of New York, which controls Jordache Enterprises and has an interest in the Victor Hotel next door to Casa Casuarina.

Straub couldn’t be reached for comment. A spokeswoman for Straub’s law firm said in a statement that Straub is “no stranger to bankruptcy auctions, having successfully acquired many assets and projects in bankruptcy auctions across the country, including the $400 million Tesoro Club & Resort based in St. Lucie.’’

In 2004, Straub made a surprise winning bid for the Miami Arena; he sold the site in 2012.

Italian designer Gianni Versace was shot to death on the steps of the estate in 1997. Versace bought the property in 1992 when it was a rundown apartment complex. According to Coldwell Banker, which has been marketing the estate in cooperation with Fisher Auction Company, he invested more than $33 million in expanding and upgrading the place.

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