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A waterfront bach three doors down from Prime Minister John Key's holiday home has sold for $2.655 million at auction.

The Omaha Beach property was purchased by the previous owners in 1990 for $105,000 - turning an annual profit of $250,000 for the past two decades.

The buyer is understood to be an Auckland company director and close friend of the Key family. The street's name is Success Court.

The exclusive beachfront community 60km north of Auckland has become a favourite haunt of the rich and powerful. Fashion designer Trelise Cooper, glamour couple Dean and Mandy Barker and the Richwhite family also own property in the area.

The four-bedroom home on a 1300m2 section boasts views across the Barrier Islands and sits just a few metres away from the surf.

Real estate agents Bayleys said it was a clear sign the property market was in good shape.

Mark Macky, Bayleys North of Auckland manager, said: "A lot of media talk about how the market is depressed but good property marketed well is still getting good prices.

"And it just shows that beachfront property is fundamentally a good investment.

"It's a stunningly beautiful beach, and a comfortable bach in a sought-after location.

"It's close to Auckland for people who lead busy lives like business owners and company directors."

A bidding war at the auction last week pushed the price far beyond the reserve - with four bidders still fighting it out at the $2.5m mark.

One observer said: "There were 10 bidders who took the bidding up to $1.8m, and from there, four bidders went head-to-head to take it up to $2.5m.

"And who says there isn't money in the market?"

The bach was the fourth most expensive property to sell in Omaha, Macky said.

Omaha Beach Community president Graham Painter said several waterfront sites had sold for around the $2m mark recently.

He said "$2.6m isn't astronomical for a bach around here." The area has been the focus of several major developments in recent years.

Plans for a 700-unit residential development and a 150-room hotel on 37ha at the southern end of Omaha are before the Environment Court.