Landmark Waterwood Estate Sells for $3.6M to Developers (PHOTOS)

Landmark Waterwood Estate Sells for $3.6M to Developers

SOLD | Built 1991 | 38,000 Sq. Ft. | 6 Beds | 17 Baths | 160 Acres
5605 West Lake Street, Vermilion, Ohio, United States, 44089

A landmark waterfront estate in Vermilion, Ohio has sold for $3.6 million to DiGeronimo Companies according to Discover Vermilion. “DiGeronimo Companies is a full-scope developer with projects in the retail, industrial, student housing, and mixed-use developments. The company is headquartered in Independence, Ohio.” It’s currently not known what the company has in store for the vast waterfront property. Discover Vermilion also reported that DiGeronimo Companies purchased 11 additional parcels surrounding the property for an additional $772,000. Waterwood Estate was built for Don Brown, inventor of the dropped ceiling, and wife, Shirley, who tragically died in a plane crash in January 2010. The 160 acre property first hit the market in 2011 for $19.5 million, giving onlookers an inside look into what was kept hidden from the public eye for decades. Famed architect Hugh Newell Jacobsen was commissioned to design the extraordinary residence in the late-1980s but after only a year and a half working with Don Brown, he was fired. To this day it’s a bit of a mystery as to why Jacobsen was let go and remains the only time he’s been fired. Brown then hired renowned architect Hideo Sasaki to carry out Jacobsen’s plans, making sure to not change anything. Jacobsen told Business Insider, “They’ve got the square-footage listed wrong. It’s not 38,000 square feet. It’s 60,000 square feet. The underground floor is the same size as the main floor. They forgot to count that.” According to Business Insider, the lower level includes a series of streets with a restaurant, bar and barber shop named after places such as Georgetown, Paris and Savannah. 

There are six bedrooms, seventeen bathrooms, three kitchens, nine fireplaces, a 40-foot long lap pool, a 20-foot round pool, custom built cabinetry and staircases and indoor parking for up to 16 cars with a marble turntable. The grounds are magnificent with world-class amenities such as a private beach, pier, marina, 180-foot floating dock, 2 acre fishing reservoir, jogging trails, 60-foot rolling hills and stream with 50-foot waterfall. The property also includes a private heliport with attached 1,925 square foot hangar and garage. The Waterwood Estate spans more than 160 acres with 2,800-feet of frontage on Lake Erie and 104 acres of agricultural land including a farm house, two storage barns, a 6,000 square foot maintenance garage and greenhouses. Jacobsen also revealed to Business Insider, “At one end of the house, he had cages that would open every hour on the hour and two Dobermans trained to run the perimeter of the property would run out. The next hour, another pair would take off.” It’s said that the Browns spent upwards of $20 million creating The Waterwood Estate. It had been on the market for $5.7 million with CBRE


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