Former tech multimillionaire Tony Lentino's Wellsford property up for sale
The sprawling Auckland home of a tech multimillionaire, complete with private airstrip and nightclub, has gone on the market.
The 363ha property, near Wellsford, was home to internet mogul Tony Lentino prior to his death in 2016.
He rose to greater prominence after he came to the assistance of Kim Dotcom following Dotcom's arrest in 2012, becoming an investor in Dotcom's new venture, Mega.
His lifestyle estate, Springhill Farm, is now for sale by tender through Bayleys Real Estate.
It includes an 870 metre-long airstrip, capable of landing small propeller-driven commercial aircraft and hosting drag races.
There is also a 678sqm airplane hangar that can house at least three aircraft, and another hangar dubbed the 'Springhill disco' which can house 200 partygoers.
That hangar has been converted to include a sound and lighting rig, band stage, bar and lounge area.
Other buildings on the site, which was run as a sheep farm, include a two-bedroom cottage, four-stand woolshed and stock-holding pens.
Blogger Cameron Slater, a close friend of Lentino's, said Springhill was a "magnificent" property.
"Tony made it his home. It was a place that he could enjoy and have fun."
Slater remembered duck shooting at the property – the Hoteo River runs through it – and doing burn-outs on the airstrip.
Lentino's friend and former Super Black driver Andre Heimgartner said he had many fond memories of concerts he had attended there.
Lentino's wife Emily, an accomplished singer, often performed in the hangar.
"It's a wonderful property. There was a fair bit happening there."
Heimgartner said the property would be an ideal home for someone who liked planes or helicopters.
"There's plenty of room for activities and plenty of land to do whatever you want."
Lentino's former colleague Greg Hahn said the property held "a lot of really, really great memories".
"People would come and visit by plane, by helicopter, by car. Boats were about the only thing that was missing."
Lentino was generous and loved hosting events, Hahn said.
"Everybody was always involved in anything that was going on up there – 'Come on down, we're going to race some cars at 2 o'clock'. All of a sudden there's half a dozen cars there and everybody's having some fun."
Bayleys spokesman John Greenwood said the property was believed to be the only one of its type in the country.
Lentino was "a down to earth Kiwi sort of bloke" and the property reflected that, he said.
"Many of Tony's good friends remember him as a lad. He loved fast cars, aeroplanes, and having a beer or two and a dance with his friends in the Springhill disco.
"It was a dream of Tony's to create a very laid-back and peaceful enclave of like-minded people who may have enjoyed his love for not only the nature and the countryside, but also flying and partying."
The property is adjacent to State Highway 1 beside the Wayby Valley Rd turn-off to Mangawhai, about 70km north of Auckland's CBD.
It has council consent for the subdivision of 13 additional lifestyle sections, ranging in size from one to two hectares.
The consent allows for the construction of a new right-of-way to service the new sections, and for the protection of four environmentally significant wetland areas, Greenwood said.
Tenders close on September 8.
- Sunday Star Times