A Palm Beach Couple Purchases An Adjacent Vacant Land On North End And Simultaneously Sells Their Rental House, Florida


In what can only be characterized as a neat real estate arrangement on the North End, a longstanding Palm Beach couple sold a rental property on Plantation Road for $10.2 million and concurrently bought an empty lot just around the corner for $10.25 million, according to the values recorded with the two deeds.

The paperwork for the 1950 property in Palm Beach shows that its owners, Donald R. Whitaker Jr. and his wife Donna, sold it to John J. Burns III through Ocean Front Avenue 2 LLC, a limited liability corporation incorporated in Virginia.

The house was last sold for $4.9 million in December 2020, and from there it was leased out as an investment property, citing multiple listing service listings and property records.

The deed states that the Whitaker-controlled firm that sold the house purchased the empty land at 620 N. Lake Way from Palm Beach Gardens-based businessman Robert Lazarowitz and his ex-wife, Cobey Rapaport. They had demolished a house on the two-fifths-acre Palm Beach property after purchasing it for a documented $6.84 million in 2021.

This week’s transactions involved two deeds that were registered by the Palm Beach County Clerk’s Office on January 10.

In the two transactions, Ocean Front Avenue 2 LLC, the Whitakers’ business, was represented by Corcoran Group agent Suzanne Frisbie. In addition, Frisbie was the listing agent for the home on Plantation Road, which is located a few streets south of the Palm Beach Country Club on a quarter-acre property.

Frisbie refrained from commenting on behalf of her clients and from giving details about the two sales. She did, however, describe the empty lot as “exceptional” as having a “high elevation.” The lot is located on Plantation Road, approximately 400 feet from the home.

The lot’s listing agent was Christian Angle, broker of Christian Angle Real Estate. It was not possible to reach him or his clients for comment.

The deeds indicate a post office box in Virginia Beach connected to the Whitakers as the mailing address of the limited liability firm involved in both sales. According to property records, Donald Whitaker is also connected to a house on Ocean Front Avenue in Virginia Beach. This street is mentioned in the name of the company that purchased the lot and sold the Palm Beach mansion.

Donald Whitaker is the president of his family’s Virginia Beach-based agricultural pesticide company, Whitaker Distribution Inc.

According to property records, the Whitakers have owned a house on Ridgeview Drive in Palm Beach since 2006. According to the most recent Palm Beach County tax records, they have that house homesteaded as their principal residence.

With 4,992 square feet of living area both inside and out, Frisbie listed the Plantation Road home for $10.5 million in mid-June, according to the MLS.

The Plantation Road home was characterized as “beautifully appointed” and “nested in a private cul-de-sac” in Frisbie’s sales advertisement, with easy access to the Lake Trail walking and bicycle trail.

The Plantation Road house has a first-floor master bedroom suite with two bathrooms, a dining area, a living room with a fireplace, and a fully functional kitchen. Images depict how the house’s two wings encircle the patio and pool.

According to the deed, the Gunster law office in West Palm Beach is the buyer’s mailing address. Jones couldn’t be reached.

In June 2022, Angle listed the vacant lot on North Lake Way for $16.9 million, but since then, the listing price has been reduced multiple times. The final price reduction occurred in May, when it was $10.95 million.

When Lazarowitz and Rapaport purchased the land on North Lake Way in July 2021, they were already married. Rapaport was formerly married to the late Robert Rapaport, who passed away in 2017. Rapaport was one of the pioneers behind the development of Palm Beach County’s Century Village and Kings Point senior living communities. She sold the Palm Beach lakefront estate she and her late husband had shared at 790 S. County Road in early 2021 for somewhat less than $31 million. On the document selling the estate to a land trust, Lazarowitz signed alongside her.

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