The subject of Michael Jackson splits opinion down the middle and this has obviously had an impact upon his former home Neverland. While the property was actually sold just prior to his death, when he was in default on a loan, it is still obviously associated with Michael Jackson. However, it is interesting that the current owner seems to have renamed the property “Sycamore Valley Ranch”. So, what is the new asking price of Neverland and what exactly do you get?
Massive price drop
Just two years ago the property was on the market for $100 million and while some of the iconic features have now gone it is still a significant development. The asking price today is a mere $67 million which is a $33 million reduction in just two years. There is obviously been limited interest in the property to date, hence the price drop, but the estate agent in charge of the sale believes it has great development potential. Then again, he would say that wouldn’t he?
What do you get for $67 million?
The property itself is just 30 minutes from Santa Barbara, California and many will be surprised to hear it actually covers 2700 acres. Did you know that Neverland has its own mountain which was named after Michael Jackson’s mother? Did you know it borders the Los Padres National Forest and has its own live oaks which are more than 100 years old?
If we now get down to the nitty-gritty, Neverland has its own movie theatre, dance studio, swimming pool and four bedroom guesthouse which itself is 5500 ft.². There is also a train station and train tracks criss-crossing Neverland although the estate agents sales pack suggests you will have to bring your own train!
The main house
Many people will be surprised to learn that the main house, covering 12,598 ft.², is built in a French Normandy style and was designed by the architect Robert Altevers – a development he completed in 1982. There are five fireplaces, five bedrooms, two half baths and six full baths and the flooring is said to be 18th century French oak. The master wing, often the location of alleged controversy, has two walk-in closets and its own private garden.
The media coverage of Neverland over the years has often centred upon the fairground attractions when in reality it is a very classy property. It is believed that Michael Jackson bought the ranch back in 1987 for $19.5 million and lived there for 15 years. He was forced to sell the property to Colony Capital in 2009 after he fell into default on a loan.
Plans for the future
In total the Neverland ranch is around 4.25 miles in size with the selling agent suggesting it could be turned into a golf course or perhaps a vineyard. Fans of Michael Jackson would be horrified to learn that the property could lose its identity but the reality is that just prior to his death his finances were difficult to say the least. We are approaching eight years since the popstar passed away and many will be surprised to learn that his beloved Neverland has not yet been snapped up.
Will the $33 million price reduction be enough this time?