Developer of The Riverfront purchases portion of Cotton Rose Farm in auction

Published 10:17 am Monday, May 27, 2024

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On Wednesday, May 15, hundreds of acres of Suffolk farmland sold in an auction held at the Hilton Garden Inn.

Charnell Blair, the owner of 363± acres near King’s Fork High School, known as Cotton Rose Farm, has moved away and decided to put the property up for auction.

Local restaurateur Bryan Mullins walked away with an 11-acre parcel that included Blair’s waterfront home, which he purchased for $1.275 million. Mullins recently sold three of his well-known North Suffolk restaurants.

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The other buyer, East West Communities, the developer of The Riverfront community in North Suffolk, purchased 350+ acres for $6 million.

Branch Lawson, president of East West Communities, says his company had its eyes on the property for some time and had conversations with Blair and her late husband, George before he died in 2016. Those conversations continued after his death until Charnell placed Cotton Rose Farm on the auction floor.

While Lawson says there are ideas about exactly what the acreage will become, there is still much work to do before they can settle on a plan.

“I really can’t say anything right now because, I mean, heck, we just found out a week ago that we were successful in the auction, and we’ve got a whole lot of work and thinking and whatnot ahead of us,” he said. “So yeah, I really don’t have anything I can put out there right now, but it’s a lovely property, and we’re excited to be affiliated with it.”

East West has also developed several communities in Virginia, South Carolina, and Florida, including Smithfield, Carrollton, and Williamsburg.