Bacardi Heiress buys house in Disney's Golden Oak

A house in Walt Disney World’s swanky Golden Oak community was scooped up by a member of the Bacardi family, which owns a namesake liquor empire. 

Hilda Maria Bacardi on Feb. 10 paid $3.2 million for a house in the Orange County community, according to new county documents. Bacardi, a direct descendant of Bacardi Limited founder Don Facundo Bacardi Masso, bought the home from Celebration-based custom homebuilder Issa Homes Inc.

Meanwhile, the luxury home sector is a bright spot in Central Florida, as the region’s warm weather and relatively low home prices draw affluent buyers from across the country to ritzy communities like Golden Oak and Windermere’s Isleworth Golf & Country Club. 

Issa Homes Partner and President Don Hempel told Orlando Business Journal he could not comment on the home purchase. However, Hempel said Golden Oak, like many communities in the region, has experienced increased demand since local stay-at-home orders were lifted last year. 

Don Hempel of Issa Homes speaks on Disney’s Golden Oak

Contact information for Hilda Bacardi was not available. Bacardi spokeswoman Jessica Merz declined to comment, saying the home purchase is a personal matter and not related to the company’s operations. 

Orange County in 2019 issued a residential construction permit for a three-story, 4,859-square-foot home for the site. The county also issued a construction permit for a 246-square-foot pool and 34-square-foot spa. Construction of the home is complete, Hempel said. 

In addition to the home’s features, living in Golden Oak gives residents access to its many amenities. Those include a private clubhouse, pool, and fitness center. Of course, Golden Oak also provides easy access to Walt Disney World Resort’s four theme parks and two water parks, with Epcot less than four miles from the neighborhood. 

“Nobody can come close to the amenities Disney provides,” Tony Davids, a Realtor at Celebration-based Tony Davids Homes LLC, previously told OBJ. Davids was not involved with the Bacardi home. 

Tony Davids speaks on Disney’s Golden Oak

Luxurious Orlando homes are in demand, and local sales increased 105% year over year. There were 45 homes sold for $1 million or more in January, up from 22 sales in January 2020, according to the Orlando Regional Realtor Association.

Bermuda-based Bacardi, the world’s biggest privately-owned spirits company, owns more than 200 booze brands, including Grey Goose Vodka and Patron Tequila. Members of the Bacardi family have made a series of recent real estate transactions in South Florida. For example, two firms owned by the family this month sold a shuttered Miami golf course for $32 million, according to sister publication South Florida Business Journal. In November, the Bacardi family was part of a joint venture that sold a South Miami mixed-use development site for $18.95 million

Trends in the residential real estate market are important, as every home sale in the state has an estimated local economic impact of $77,858, according to a 2018 study by the National Association of Realtors. In addition, the housing market often is considered a reflection of the local economy’s overall health.