If there is one thing Vancouver has a lot of, it's expensive houses.
As we showed earlier in early June, the world's biggest housing bubble defied impossible odds, and less than a year after the British Columbia government imposed a 15% property tax on foreign buyers, soon after an initial dip, home prices rebounded right back to all time highs, rising 5% to a record C$1.8 million in May, while the number of properties sold was the third-highest ever for that month.
And now, to celebrate one record, we present a second: a mansion on Vancouver's "Billionaires’ Row" waterfront was listed this afternoon for sale with an asking price of C$63 million ($48 million), which according to Sotheby's sets a record for real estate in Greater Vancouver's history.
What does the house valued at 18,500 bitcoin offer the lucky Chinese money-laundered who will purchase it and never again step foot in it?
The manor features expansive views of downtown Vancouver and snow-capped mountains across the bay. It’s owned by local business titan Joseph Segal and his wife, Rosalie, who are well-known as philanthropists in the city.
With spectacular ocean views of Spanish Banks, the Strait of Georgia, West Vancouver, Downtown Vancouver and the North Shore Mountains, the Estate is located in Vancouver's most prestigious neighbourhood and has been an honoured venue visited by prominent dignitaries and celebrities from around the world.
Inspired by the French gardens of Versailles, Belmont Estate features a tiered, 3-level garden lined with indigenous, mature sequoia trees, golden spruce, maples and many other varieties. The property also features a hobby orchard. In the spring, over 12,000 vibrant, colorful tulips, hyacinths and daffodils bloom throughout the gardens and are complimented by rhododendrons, magnolia and lilacs. The expansive terrace overlooks sweeping views and the extensively manicured hedging provides privacy.
The record price will hardly come as a surprise, as it merely caps the ever-escalating home "values" in Canada’s most expensive city, and comes after concerns about the near-collapse of alternative-mortgage lender Home Capital Group which, however, were allayed today in a stunning rescue by Warren Buffett who swooped in like a true vulture in the role of a loan shark white knight.
Some more details about the house which will likely end up as yet another Vancouver ghost mansion: the five-bedroom, 12-bathroom residence boasts more than 22,000 square feet of living space on a 1.28-acre lot. It’s located on Belmont Avenue, home to five of the region’s 10 most expensive properties.
The house features a dark wood-paneled bar, an indoor pool surrounded by white arches and a double-height atrium lined with paintings. But the coup de grace is a chandelier once owned by Benito Mussolini, according to an October 2007 report by Vancouver Magazine.
Who is the current owner? Some details from Bloomberg:
Joseph Segal left school at 14 when his father died and later joined the Canadian army penniless to fight in World War II. His road to riches began after the war, when he purchased military surplus goods that no one else wanted -- starting with 2,000 cans of olive paint that he convinced farmers to buy to spruce up their barns, he told the Vancouver Sun in 2013.
From there he built an empire spanning retail, manufacturing and real estate, including founding Fields Stores Ltd., a no-frills chain that became a fixture in many rural towns across western Canada. He is president of Kingswood Capital Corp., the family’s Vancouver-based conglomerate whose holdings include interests in crib maker Stork Manufacturing Inc., a Vancouver television broadcaster and commercial, industrial and residential real estate developments in the region.
Still not interested in this bargain? This is what you'd be missing for the low, low price of $48 million.