An American multimillionaire with interests in the vitamin industry is the seller of Takapuna's Sentinel penthouse apartment, with a rateable value of $8.1 million.

Via his Patrick Farms investment vehicle, Ronald Patrick owns unit 2901 at the top of the tower on Northcroft St, advertised for sale in the Herald on Sunday Homes via Alison Parker and Corey Knapp of Premium.

Auckland Council lists the two-level penthouse as being valued for rating purposes at $5.3m in land and $2.79m in improvements.

When he first bought another North Shore home about seven years back, that was referred to as a "bolthole purchase"and Patrick said at the time: "No one's going to bomb New Zealand."

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American Ronald Patrick's Sentinel penthouse. Photo / Brett Phibbs
American Ronald Patrick's Sentinel penthouse. Photo / Brett Phibbs

"I flew over here twice and looked at every single oceanfront property I could find. I looked at Takapuna, all over. New Zealand has good food, a good way of life, good education."

Patrick was reported as having engaged interior designer Juliette Yarrell to decorate and upgrade the 668sq m penthouse. She had 12 weeks to turn the two floors "into something that felt like home, not corporate, not neutral but layered and warm."

60 Sharon Rd which Patrick sold. Photo / Richard Robinson
60 Sharon Rd which Patrick sold. Photo / Richard Robinson

The Sentinel is not his first property here: seven years ago, the then non-citizen got state consent to buy a much larger family home further up the North Shore. He needed that clearance as not only was he not a New Zealander, but he sought to buy land which needed Government clearance before it was sold to a foreigner, a move now banned under Overseas Investment Act reforms.

In 2012, Patrick Farms LLC made an Overseas Investment Office application to buy 0.3ha of land at 60 Sharon Rd, Browns Bay from various New Zealand interests for $5m.


Consent was needed because the land was sensitive, being waterfront. The OIO granted Patrick consent.

"Ronald James Patrick intends to reside indefinitely in New Zealand. He is acquiring the land as a residential/lifestyle dwelling for himself and his family," the decision said. In 2017, when he was selling that, he was reported as viewing New Zealand as a bolthole.

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Heraldhomes reported at the time of the Sharon Rd place, how Ron and his family settled on the sprawling estate of Sir Graeme Avery, founder of the medical publishing house, Adis International, the Millennium Institute, and Hawkes Bay's Sileni Estates Winery.

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Takapuna's luxury Sentinel penthouse apartment sells for $7m

"The couple were struck by the wings of the building spreading over three floors, with clifftop views from Browns Bay all the way north, the swimming pool and gardens, but were keen to update some of the 80s bits that hadn't worn so well."

Rooftop decks at the penthouse. Photo / Graham Wall
Rooftop decks at the penthouse. Photo / Graham Wall

Property records show 60 Sharon Rd is now owned by GWG Trustee whose shareholders include Lichun Gao of 17 O'Neills Ave.

In 2017, he set New Zealand house price record for purchasing the sprawling O'Neills Ave waterfront place from Mark Stewart of Christchurch's Stewart family for $28m.

Lichun Gao also appeared in the NBR Rich List on Friday, as a "mystery millionaire", rich enough to buy that O'Neills Rd former home SkyTV founder Craig Heatley had developed.

"Adding to the intrigue is a Gao company called Far East NZ Investment. Incorporated in 2016, its industry classification on the Companies Office website is described as milk products manufacturing," NBR reported on Friday.

King Khoo (right), 29, with James Kellow in 2013. Photo / Greg Bowker
King Khoo (right), 29, with James Kellow in 2013. Photo / Greg Bowker

In 2013, Patrick's Sentinel penthouse apartment was owned by a former Takapuna Grammar student, King Khoo who migrated from Malaysia around 2001 and paid $71m for Auckland Council's North Shore headquarters at 1-7 The Strand.

Khoo bought the Sentinel penthouse for $5.2m around 2011 and NZ Mortgages & Securities had arranged funding for him to buy the council building.

America's Next Top Model television show was filmed in that apartment.

The Herald reported in 2017 how Alison Parker of Premium had sold the Sentinel penthouse for $7m, which was $500,000 below the CV at the time and less than the $7.8m paid for a Metropolis penthouse on level 26 and $7.05m paid for a Herne Bay apartment.

Patrick has been asked to comment on why he was selling the Sentinel penthouse. No response has so far been received. Premium's Miles Wallace said the client was "a very private person".