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A Longwood investor intrigued by the “unique opportunity to restore an iconic home” has purchased Jeno Paulucci’s Sanford home for $400,000.
The mid-century style home built in 1959 sits on 1.1 acres at 2020 Washington Ave. The property was purchased March 30 by GEB Properties LLC from the Lois M. Paulucci Revocable Trust.
Garth Bolton, owner GEB Properties, has spent the last 20 years buying and restoring homes to resell. The combination of history, unique architecture and the “wow” factor of the Paulucci name attracted Bolton to make an offer on the property.
“In talking with my wife, we just thought it was too good of an opportunity to pass up. We made an offer and were a little surprised when they accepted. During the inspection process, some things came up to make us think twice. We decided this was too special to pass up.”Garth Bolton, GEB properties LLC
Bolton said he expects to spend $150,000 restoring and remodeling the house with new fixtures, electrical and plumbing. He wants to retain the unique characteristics of the home, like the Chun King logos located throughout the house.
“The uniqueness of the house is what makes it so special,” Bolton said. “We really just want to modernize the home and keep those special features.”
He expects work to begin soon on the home and be completed within 3 months.
“We’d like to maybe have an open house so people can see what we’ve done,” Bolton said.
In 2 separate transactions, GEB Properties also bought:
- The Paulucci guesthouse at 2041 Mellonville Ave. (.85 acres) directly behind the Paulucci residence for $125,000. The deal, also with the Paulucci trust, closed March 30.
- 4 mostly vacant parcels on the east side of Washington Avenue for $310,000. Located across the street from the Paulucci residence, the 2.25 acres of property was purchased from Central Parc Development LLC, a Maitland-based firm headed by Miguel de Arcos, who has business ties to the Paulucci family.
Currently the guest house and the main residence are connected with landscaping and walkways. Bolton said the plan is to create two distinct properties.
“I think it would be difficult to sell both properties as one, so we intend to make those separate,” said Bolton.
As for the vacant properties on Washington Avenue, Bolton said the property is platted as seven 55-foot-wide lots. He intends to re-subdivide the property into 80-foot-wide lots.
“We want to build some really unique homes, not something that is a cookie-cutter design,” Bolton said. “Our plan is to keep the same type of character that’s already in the neighborhood.”
For photos of the interior of the Paulucci home, check out “The Amazing Estate of Jeno Paulucci” on Sanford365.
Once restoration and modernization is done on the existing structures and the new construction is complete on the vacant lots, Bolton intends to sell all of the properties.
“Hopefully we can stay on budget and make a little money once we’re done,” Bolton said. “These are unique properties, we want to make something very special.”
Jeno Paulucci came to Sanford in the late 1940s, attracted by the city’s celery production. He used the celery in Chun King, his line of canned Chinese food. He sold the company to R.J. Reynolds in 1966 for $66 million (about $530 million in 2020 dollars). He went on to create several other companies, including Jeno’s Pizza Rolls and Michelina’s. In the 1980s he planned and developed the master-planned community of Heathrow.