Windemere mansion falls into foreclosure


The Windemere mansion at 5501 Cary Street Road sold Friday at a foreclosure auction. (BizSense file photo)

Just over a year after a local couple purchased it for $3.5 million, a West End mansion once tied to a local beer distribution family has fallen into foreclosure.

The 10,000-square-foot Windemere mansion at 5501 Cary Street Road was sold at auction Friday on the steps of the city courthouse. A lone bid of just over $2.87 million sealed the deal.

The bidder was W. Harold Talley I LLC, the noteholder on the deed when Windemere was purchased in late 2016. The auction was prompted by a default on repayment of the principal on that deed – $2.8 million.

Michael Hamway, who placed the bid on behalf of the LLC, said the group was reclaiming the property to get its money back as the original noteholder. Hamway said they plan to list the property for sale.

The property’s previous owner was George V LLC, the entity that purchased the Tudor-style home in November 2016. The deed identifies the buyers behind the LLC as Douglas R. Cornell Jr. and Jana Michelle Suyes.

Cornell is managing partner of IT firm Integris Solutions Group. He and Suyes previously owned another West End residence – the 5,700-square-foot home at 210 Virginia Ave. – which they listed in May 2016 and sold the following January for $2 million.

Through the LLC, the couple made an all-cash offer of $3.99 million that put Windemere under contract before it was listed in April 2016. The sale closed that November, with a final purchase price of $3.5 million.

While Friday’s auction was related to the $2.8 million on the original deed, a previous foreclosure auction had been scheduled Jan. 9 related to a separate $260,000 note. That auction was never held.

The smaller note was tied to a deed recorded last May. That deed refers to securing a $260,000 payment from Integris Solutions Group, Cornell’s company, to noteholder Gerald A. Peters.

Documents at the courthouse also show a credit line deed of trust with Chesapeake Bank for $350,000. The grantor is listed as George V LLC, and the deed refers to a promissory note or other agreement from Cornell.

Attempts to reach Cornell for comment in recent weeks were unsuccessful.

Attorneys Mark Fleckenstein and Adam Young handled the Jan. 9 sale that was cancelled. They did not return calls inquiring about the sale.

windemere auction

Friday’s auction was held on the steps of the city courthouse. (Jonathan Spiers)

Christopher Malone of Shockoe Slip law firm ThompsonMcMullan handled Friday’s sale. He and colleague Hugh Antrim are trustees on the original deed.

Accompanying Hamway at Friday’s auction was David Talley, who is also a manager of W. Harold Talley I LLC. David Talley is listed as the LLC’s registered agent in State Corporation Commission filings.

A second potential bidder was also present for Friday’s sale but declined to follow Hamway’s opening bid.

Each bidder was required to pay a $28,000 deposit at the time of the sale, according to the auction’s terms. The sale was expected to close within 15 days of the auction.

Windemere has a history of late of being on and off the market.

Previously the home of Betty G. Brown – the former wife of the head of Brown Distributing, Larry Brown – the mansion had been listed and delisted multiple times since Betty Brown bought it back in an auction in 2011 for $2.5 million. That auction followed the Browns’ divorce that resulted in a property dispute that went all the way to the Virginia Supreme Court.

The house was listed in 2013 for $4.2 million but had been off-market leading up to its 2016 sale.

Originally a hunting lodge built in the 1880s that was converted into a three-story mansion in 1907, Windemere once served as the home for then-governor Jim Gilmore for 18 months while the Executive Mansion was being renovated.

Totaling seven bedrooms, eight full bathrooms and two half-baths, the house features Tudorbethan architecture and includes a sunroom, center hall, music room and multiple fireplaces. Renovations added a basement with sauna, wine cellar and game room.

The 3-acre property is known for having one of the first swimming pools in Richmond and includes gardens designed by landscape architect Charles Gillette, a separate two-story living quarters off the kitchen and a six-car garage accessible from the basement.

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Linda Terry

this proves that the price achieved by my firm in 2008, at just over $2.5 million was a more appropriate price! That transaction didn’t close until 2011 due to the legal challenges.