Real estate magnate pays $23.5M for former Hearst mansion in Manalapan

Franklin L. Haney bought a five-bedroom, 10 bath mansion at 1100 S. Ocean Blvd. in Manalapan for $23.5 million from 1100 South Ocean Boulevard LLC on March 12.

The sprawling 18,663 square foot palatial residence was previously owned by Randolph and Veronica Hearst. They paid $29,870,807 for the property in July 2000. According to a March 21 article in the Washington Post, Veronica Hearst foreclosed on the property in February.

Mr. Haney is the founder of Washington-based FLH Company, one of the largest real estate and property developers in the country.

He got his start in property development in the late 1960s renting out office buildings to government agencies and soon was developing hotels and parking garages. In the 1980s, he bought a bought a Coca-Cola bottling company and a Miller beer distributorship. In 2005, he made an unsuccessful bid to purchase Major League Baseball's Washington Nationals.

Early in the Tennessee native's life he worked for Tennessee senators Herbert Walters and Albert Gore Sr. and served as an attorney and staff lawyer for the Tennessee Public Service Commission. Later in life, the close friend of former vice president Al Gore unsuccessfully ran for congress and governor in his home state.

Mr. Haney completed his undergraduate studies at the University of Tennessee and attended the George Washington University School of Law.

Mr. Hearst is the last surviving son of newspaper baron William Randolph Hearst. Randolph Hearst passed away in Dec. 2000 at the age of 85.

From 1973-1996 he served as chairman of the Hearst Corporation and throughout his career was active in the management of the San Francisco Examiner, a Hearst-owned paper.

He is the father of Patty Hearst, who was famously kidnapped by the Symbionese Liberation Army (SLA) in Berkeley, Calif., in 1974.

Randolph Hearst attended Harvard University.

Mrs. Hearst, the former Veronica de Gruyter, is the third wife of Randolph Hearst. Born in Monte Carlo, she is the daughter of Princess Fatemah Khanoum and Dutch aristocrat Wilhelmus de Gruyter. She was married to Alfredo Beracasa, a Venezuelan leather goods magnate and banking heir.

Before the Hearsts, the occupants of the mansion - also known as Villa Venezio - were Melvin and Bren Simon.

Mr. Simon is co-chairman of the Simon Property Group, a property development company that operates some of the biggest malls in the U.S. He and his brother Herbert are co-owners of the NBA's Indiana Pacers.

The Hearst mansion was designed by the famous architect Maurice Fatio and was originally built in 1929 for Cornelius Vanderbilt's great-grandson, Harold S. Vanderbilt. The Haneys reportedly plan on restoring the mansion.

Home sales in Manalapan dropped more than 33 percent in 2007 versus sales in 2006. The median sales price increased from $3.6 million to $3.8 million.

BlockShopper Metrics started tracking home sales in South Florida in 2001.

Address: 1100 South Ocean Boulevard
Buyer(s): Franklin L Haney (Trustee) and 2008 Haney (Residence Trust)
Seller(s): 1100 South Ocean Boulevard Llc
Sale date: Mar. 12, 2008

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