After devastating blaze, Hawthorne Country Club future uncertain

May 9, 2023

The fire at Hawthorne Country Club that destroyed the facility has also left the future of the iconic property in question.

The blaze happened Sunday, May 7, just days after realtor Jeff Hathaway announced that the property at 970 Tucker Road was placed under agreement with Toll Brothers for $3 million. 

Although an exact plan for the property had not yet been determined, housing for those 55 and older or 62 and older was one possibility, Hathaway had said.

In the wake of the fire, Hathaway said he “truly, truly hopes this doesn’t affect the deal.’’ 

The status of the transaction remains “unclear,’’ Dave Bauer, Toll Brothers Division President in Massachusetts, said in a statement Tuesday, May 9. “We’re going to continue conversations.’’

Toll Brothers is “currently in an agreement to purchase the property, but the transaction has not closed,’’ the company said Tuesday in a statement. “Therefore, we are not the present owners of this property and we do not have any additional details on this incident. 

“Our top concern is the safety of all involved, and we are grateful that there have been no reported injuries related to this incident, and that the fire was extinguished quickly thanks to the incredible work of firefighters,’’ the statement concludes.

The property is owned by Bliss Investors Inc., whose officers are Ivonilde Hathaway and Stephanie DeMello. The two women are the daughters of controversial seafood magnate Carlos Raphael, who has faced legal problems in the past.

Raphael is not part of Bliss Investors now, Jeff Hathaway said, but “he’s the guy that got all of us started.’’

Jeff Hathaway said Raphael set up the business to help his family. “He wants his kids to be successful,’’ he said.

But he knows the family is often the subject of discussion and speculation. “People are quick to attack us without getting any of the facts,’’ he said. 

The fire investigation continues. Hathaway said he hopes those responsible are “caught and brought to justice.’’