By BERNARD ORSMAN
A Hawaiian-style property fronting Takapuna beach has sold for a record $12.78 million.
The house at 10 Gibbons Rd smashed the previous national record, set in July last year, when a home on a 0.5ha property at Kohimarama Rd in Auckland's eastern suburbs sold for $10.5 million.
The Takapuna property was owned by Barry and Emma McCollam, who arrived from Northern Ireland in the 1950s and established McCollam Printers.
When the house was put up for sale last October, Barry McCollam told the Herald that he and his wife spent six months a year in Queensland to indulge their golfing passion and didn't need such a big house.
The 1300sq m house on 2362sq m of land, with timber highlighting, mellow sandstone flooring throughout and a swimming pool looking out through phoenix palms and mature pohutukawa trees to Takapuna Beach, was bought by an American couple who have been in New Zealand for less than five years.
Jim Mays, the Premium Real Estate agent who finalised the deal last Friday, said it was the finest property he had sold in 28 years.
The property was built on part of the grounds of an exclusive private Anglican girls' boarding school.
The villa next door at 12 Gibbons Rd was part of the school and sold for $8.3 million over the internet in December 2000 to a 34-year-old Aucklander, David Hughes.
The villa, on 5214sq m of beachfront land, was sold by Oenone Bidwill, former wife of multimillionaire Auckland entrepreneur and investor Charles Bidwill, and sister of John Spencer - for many years the country's richest man.
Barfoot & Thompson agent Leila MacDonald, who sold the Kohimarama Rd property, also sold a residential property at Mellons Bay for $14 million in December 2002 but most of the value was tied up in the attached 7.7ha of land.