Posted 8.30.13 @ 9:10 by: Staff

It was once the most expensive home listed in America at $125m, but after drastic price cuts it looks like it’s heading down the pipe at $25m – with no guarantees that it will sell at all. It begs the question: how much is too much when it comes to luxury real estate? Is this Mediterranean style mansion in Miami’s South Beach really worth the asking price, or is it just wishful thinking?

Went on the Market for $125m Last Year

Lamar Fisher, head of the brokerage handling the sale, called it the “trophy property of the century” when speaking with Reuters. When the home, dubbed Casa Casuarina, was first built and owned by Versace, it was the only property on Ocean Drive in South Beach that was an actual single family home. Everything else in the area was posh hotels and resorts, haute cuisine and delightful restaurants right on the Atlantic.

After the tragedy in 1997, the home was converted into several different venues. Sometimes it was rent out for parties and as a night club, other times a boutique hotel – once it was even a restaurant. It’s prime real estate at its finest, but the hotel shut down earlier this year supposedly due to low occupancy and mismanagement.

Storied History

The original home was built in 1930, a mammoth 18,838 square feet mansion modeled after a home built by Christopher Columbus’ son in the Dominican islands. Built by Alden Freeman, a famous architect, it was later turned into the Amsterdam Palace, an apartment complex.

When Versace bought the home he renamed it Casa Casuarina, paying about $3m for it. He bought the hotel next door, tore it down and built a 6,000sqft addition onto the property. He spend over $33m renovating the home, adding in gold frescoes and mouldings, 24k gold inlays all over the property and a 50ft roman style mosaic pool. According to the listing décor and furniture come with the purchase.

But why is up for sale now? According to the news the current owner is locked in a dispute with the former hotel operator and the property has entered foreclosure. They’ve been trying to attract buyers to this big piece of history in South Beach, but the price hasn’t been right thus far.

Serious Bids Only

With bidding starting at $25m, not just anyone can start bidding on this home.  You’ll need about $40m available and put down $3m in escrow just to bid on the house – amazing, even with luxury real estate standards as they are.

While we can’t sell you this little piece of history, we can help you find a beautiful home here in Oakville. If you’re trying to find the one that’s just right or you’re trying to sell the home you already own (or both!), the Goodale Miller Team has a lot to offer! Give us a call today and see what we can do for you.

Pertinent and insightful information on Oakville real estate as well as commentary on current events in our community.