The day before the widow of Miami Beach millionaire Martin Woolin was to lose her mansion in a foreclosure sale, Raquel Woolin filed for bankruptcy, allowing her to hold on to the estate at 4949 Pine Tree Drive — for now.
The 11,638-square-foot, five-bedroom home was to be sold at a public auction on Sept. 11. Woolin owes lender Commercial Bridge Loan Funding Group a total of $3.8 million, including principal, interest and fees, according to Miami-Dade County property records.
Woolin could not be reached for comment. She does not have an attorney representing her in the bankruptcy filing.
Woolin stopped paying her mortgage a year ago, according to public records. The canal-front estate is assessed at $8 million, down from $12.6 million last year, according to the Miami-Dade County property appraiser.
Since bankruptcy puts a foreclosure cases on hold, Woolin is buying time. In addition to the $3.8 million owed to Commercial Bridge, she’s on the hook to unsecured creditors for $2.5 million.
The house is where Martin Woolin was shot in the chest one night in May 2002. Before dying Woolin told police he accidentally shot himself.
Theshooting led to years of litigation between Martin Woolin’s sisters and Raquel Woolin over her possible involvement in her husband’s death and the future of her husband’s estate.
Some of those cases where dismissed while others are pending. She has not been charged in her husband’s death.
Woolin had been trying to sell the house for more than three years, according to Miami Beach Realtor Kevin Tomlinson, with Esslinger Wooten Maxwell. The asking price is $8.9 million, he said.
"It is an amazing piece of property … it is a landmark," he said.
The estate, which has 670 linear feet on thecanal, was built in 1937 as the summer home to the late S.S. Kresge, a retail magnate.