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Florida residential property once owned by John Lennon is sold

John and Yoko Lennon were fond of Florida real estate to the point of owning a seaside mansion in Palm Beach County that they used as a vacation site in 1980. The same property was recently sold to a local equity investor by Palm Beach socialites for $23 million. The residential property, called El Solano, has some construction and ownership quirks that go back to a dispute in the 1920s that involved a member of the Vanderbilt family and a Standard Oil heiress.

Harold K. Vanderbilt erected an addition to El Solano that abutted the property line with that of the next door mansion, i.e., the property owned by the oil heiress. The heiress was upset at the intrusion that came right up to her property line. The parties eventually resolved their feud by selling the addition to the heiress, who then built a second-story bridge-like walkway to connect the addition to her home. She turned it into a guest house and, although the addition is attached to the neighboring mansion, the successors to the heiress have used it since then as a guest house.

Although the two mansions have been connected by the guest house and bridge for decades, the two have never had a common owner. That makes it an interesting real estate quirk to tourists and insiders alike. The initial intrusion where Vanderbilt put an addition right up next to the heiress' property line could not have been accomplished today with modern zoning and building restrictions.

Furthermore, the ability of the parties to get away with the creative and unusual solution to their mutual problem was also a product of more lax regulations in Florida during older times. Today, the residential property next to El Solano is owned by the world-famous author James Patterson. The Pattersons have maintained and used the guesthouse and bridge as did their predecessors in title for many past years.

 

Source: palmbeachdailynews.com, "Former John Lennon house sells for $23 million in Palm Beach", Darrell Hofheinz, Jan. 20, 2016

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