A PGA golf pro recently sold his lakeside mansion in Longwood for $3 million to a wealthy businessman who is building one of the state's biggest mosques.
Golfer Christian "Chris" DiMarco and his wife Amy sold their 11,630-square-foot home on Linden Lake to Gulam A. Jaffer and Fatima Jaffer, according to a deed signed Feb. 16, and recorded Tuesday in Seminole County.
The DiMarcos previously paid $1.45 million in February 2006 for what was then a vacant 5.87-acre lot on Markham Wood's luxury, per county property appraiser records.
Though million dollar-plus home sales are not unusual in Seminole County -- last year there were 44 -- the $3 million price paid by Jaffer is the highest in several years. Last year, the most paid for a home in the county was $2.5 million, according to figures from the county property appraiser's office. In 2015 the most expensive house sold in Seminole was for $2.45 million.
"That's a high price in Seminole County," said Sally Sheibenberger, community services director for the property appraiser. "We have some expensive homes in Seminole County but that's good and high."
The two-story home features five bedrooms, six full baths and four half-baths. Exterior features include a putting green, a small beach and a boat dock. Inside, guests is a game room with a full bar, a bowling alley and a theater room, according to a listing by seller's agent Sue Silberbusch of Orlando Luxury Homes, Inc.
Custom features include high timber beams hand-selected from a Vermont barn, along and hand-scraped wood floors. The dining area has its own wine room.
Jaffer is founder and president of Yourway Transport, a customized global delivery service based in Allentown, Pa. The company provides logistical expertise for clients who need their inventory and critical material within hours or minutes from its destination, according to its website.
A spokesman at Yourway said Jaffer alternates weekends between Allentown and Seminole County. He is listed in Florida Secretary of State records as the manager of Jaffer Land Company LLC with a mailing address in Allentown. He is also listed as the registered agent with a Longwood address.
The Jaffer Reachout Foundation, whose founding members are listed as Gulamali, Shiraz and Abdulhussein Jaffer, has been building a large mosque south of Sanford since 2010. The Orlando Sentinel reported in May 2016 that Gulam Jaffer was the landowner.
The mosque, called Masjid-al-Hayy (or Ever Living Mosque), has been slow in reaching completion because of Jaffer's insistence on using artisans from Dubai and Turkey and imported materials, according to a general contractor quoted in the story.
The spokesman for Jaffer in Allentown said the mosque is "almost done."
DiMarco, 48, is a graduate of the University of Florida who began playing golf professionally in 1990. He has played in 518 PGA tournaments over his career, earning $22.65 million in winnings, according to PGAtour.com. His best money year was 2005 when he earned $3.56 million.
During his career, DiMarco won three PGA tournaments and finished second in three majors: the 2004 PGA, 2005 Masters and 2006 The Open Championship.