In a significant turn of events in the luxury real estate market, a Florida lender has acquired the oceanfront Manalapan estate of Nigerian oil mogul Onajite Okoloko. The spec megamansion, which was under construction, was purchased for $21.5 million by Edward London’s London Financial South Ocean LLC, a Florida-based entity.

Onajite Okoloko, a prominent figure in Nigeria's oil industry and chairman of Midwestern Oil & Gas, Eroton Exploration & Production, and Notore Chemical Industries, had initially listed the property for a staggering $87.5 million. Okoloko, also a co-founder of Ocean and Oil Holdings, faced foreclosure on the property located at 1460 South Ocean Boulevard, leading to its eventual sale.

Edward London, a Key Biscayne-based lender and the mortgage holder of the property, filed a foreclosure case in October against Okoloko and his associated entities. The court documents revealed that London Financial was owed $20.8 million as of early October. The case was expedited by the court, with a resolution mandated within eight months of filing.

The property in question was not intended as Okoloko's personal residence but as a 25,600-square-foot spec mansion. The design included six bedrooms, eight bathrooms, three half-bathrooms, and a tennis court, spread across a 1.5-acre ocean-to-lake estate. The listing, managed by Pascal Liguori of Premier Estate Properties, first appeared on the market in 2020 for $80 million, later increasing to $87.5 million in November.

Construction on the estate began in 2018 but experienced several pauses, the latest restart occurring in March 2023. However, Okoloko's challenges extend beyond the property, with his wife, Salma Alli Okoloko, filing for divorce in 2021. The proceedings are ongoing, and reports suggest a significant financial dispute between the couple.

The future of the Manalapan mansion remains uncertain, especially with London Financial also suing the builder. Manalapan, a coveted location south of Palm Beach, is known for its luxurious ocean-to-lake estates, attracting high-profile buyers like Oracle co-founder Larry Ellison and health care CEO Rama Raju Mantena.

As the legal and financial complexities surrounding the property continue to unfold, the fate of this once-promising luxury estate hangs in the balance, reflecting the often turbulent nature of high-end real estate transactions.

Posted by Discover South Florida on


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