FORMER chief executive of Anglo Irish Bank, David Drumm, paid a total of $7.2m for two luxurious houses in the exclusive American resort of Cape Cod last year, even as the bank was being bailed out by the State.
Mr Drumm -- who resigned from Anglo Irish Bank in the wake of the controversy over €87m in covert loans taken by the bank's chairman Sean FitzPatrick -- bought the houses for $4.6m and $2.6m respectively in the months of March and September 2008, according to records filed with the Massachusetts Land Registry.
Originally built in the 1900s, both of Drumm's Cape Cod homes were carefully restored by local developer Minglewood Homes in accordance with strict guidelines laid down by the Cape Cod Historic Commission before the former Anglo chief purchased them.
The more expensive and luxurious of the two properties is located at the picturesque Stage Neck area, and overlooks the storied Nantucket Sound and the Oyster River.
According to the developer, the refurbished Stage Neck property encompasses 4,800 square feet of living space over three levels.
The first floor of the $4.6m house consists of a spacious living room with barrel vaulted ceilings, a formal dining room equipped with a double-sided fireplace, home study and a gourmet kitchen furnished with a centre island counter. The first floor also includes a master bedroom suite with its own ensuite bathroom.
The second floor is laid out into two guest bedrooms, both with ensuite bathrooms. Both rooms offer views of the surrounding countryside and access to a massive 1,500 square foot deck.
Finally, the third floor consists of a study and library, which again has its own access to the deck outside as well as 180-degree views over Nantucket Sound.
Documents filed with the Land Registry in Massachusetts show Mr Drumm and his wife completed the purchase of the $4.6m house on March 14 last year.
The same records reveal the former Anglo boss took out two separate mortgages for $1m apiece to assist in the house's purchase with the Cape Cod Five Cents Savings Bank.
Mr Drumm's other new home in Cape Cod is located away from the shore at Cross Street, the main thoroughfare in the nearby and idyllic resort town of Chatham.
Originally built in 1918, the $2.6m bungalow was renovated and updated by the same developer with the addition of a dormer extension to the rear of the property. Apart from this, the interior of the house has been converted to an open floor plan with its two existing bedrooms moved to the newly-constructed dormer extension.
According to Massachusetts Land Registry filings, Mr Drumm purchased the Cross Street bungalow in September of last year, availing of a $1.8m mortgage, again with the Cape Cod Five Cent Saving Bank.
Last week, an estate agent's sign posted in the front garden of the property suggested Mr Drumm has already put it up for sale again.
Shareholders in the newly-nationalised Anglo Irish Bank will, no doubt, be intrigued to learn that their former chief executive completed the purchase of his second Cape Cod house on September 30 -- just one day after Anglo had gone into meltdown on the Irish Stock Exchange with the bank losing 46 per cent of its value, closing the session in Dublin at €2.30 a share.
That precipitous drop in Anglo's stock price -- driven by intense speculation that the bank was on the brink of collapse -- is understood to have played a significant part in triggering the Cabinet's decision on the night of September 29 to introduce the State's €400bn deposit guarantee scheme aimed at safeguarding our banking system.
Not that the widespread fear being felt by Anglo's shareholders, the Government and the international investment community, had percolated through to Mr Drumm. With a €3.274m pay package in 2007 alone, the former Anglo chief executive appeared not to have experienced the credit crunch on a personal level just yet.