YOUR MAMAS NOTES: Watching a Cirque du Soleil show is a bit like partaking of an illegal substance then carelessly entering and wandering wide-eyed through a death-defying and fantastical world of freaky body benders, mystical creatures on stilts and fearless aerialists whom Your Mama thinks must have less common sense than a boll weevel to even consider pouring themselves into genitalia-revealing outfits and flinging their lithe and lust-producing bodies up into the air like they don’t have a damn bone to break.
The Cirque du Soleil, an super-surreal animal free circus-like spectacle that raised street performance to a high art of extreme athleticism, was co-founded in the mid-1980s by seasoned French-Canadian street performers Daniel Gauthier and Guy Laliberté, the latter who bought out Monsieur Gauthier’s ownership in the year 2000. In 1991 casino king Steve Wynn opened the first of many permanent Cirque du Soleil shows in Las Vegas, NV. In addition to the half-dozen or so permanent Cirque shows in Las Vegas, there are several touring groups that take the various productions around the world and employ thousands of otherwise unemployable people with resumés that include fascinating but little sought-after skills like, “able to keep 24 hula-hoops going all at once,” “capable of folding body up like a piece of paper” and “can be tossed into the air, perform 72 somersaults with a twist and alight safely on the shoulders of a midget dressed like a giant.” For all of that, Cirque du Soleil has legions of awe-struck fans and rakes in almost a billion dollars in annual revenue.
Monsieur Laliberté, who continues as the visionary face of Cirque du Soleil, went from busker to billionaire and like all good newly-minted billionaires Monsieur Laliberté has a swollen portfolio of high-end properties in various parts of the world. Thanks to the Bizzy Boys at Celebrity Address Aerial we’ve learned that Monsieur Laliberté–or, more accurately, a corporate entity known to be attached to the smooth-pated space tourist–has recently opted to either lighten his real estate load in Las Vegas or perhaps to trade up for a new crib in Sin City even more grandiloquent than the mansion recently hoisted on the market with an unnecessarily complicated asking price of $1,899,999, a number more sensibly known among those not in the real estate dog-and-pony show as one-point-nine million clams.
Property records show that a Quebecois company with the very same mailing address as the Cirque du Soleil offices in Montreal–that’s Canada dillweeds–purchased an architecturally insufferable mansion in a small guard-gated Las Vegas-area community in March of 1996 for $1,400,000. According to listing information for the bulky two-story mock-Mediterranean mansion that pushes the edges of the .57-acre lot and makes a mockery of real Mediterranean architecture there are a total of 5 bedrooms and 5.5 poopers in 7,906 square feet.
Given the rather outlandish nature of and visual complexity of Cirque du Soleil shows, it really should not have been such a slap-in-the-face surprise to Your Mama that the decorative decisions of Monsieur Laliberté have the same sort of–let’s be nice and call it–unrestrained joie de vivre as the whimsical extravaganzas he imagines and produces.
A squat portico on the front facade of the unwieldy, unassuming and unredeeming exterior give way to a hangar-sized 1,200 square foot foyer/great room with both marble and wood floors. The colossal combined spaces shriek and vibrate with a cacophony of color that looks like a damn Crayola box was exploded by a decorative terrorist. Some of the walls are sunflower yellow, others the color of Cabernet Sauvignon, at least one pumpkin orange color and still more a muddy shade of taupe. Many of the moldings around the windows and doors are punished with the same eye-popping hot pink paint slathered on the floating curved staircase that dramatically ascends to a bridge that spans the great room and connects the second floor bedroom wings.
A trio of Hyundai-sized chandeliers that look like they were ripped right out of one of Saddam Hussein’s palaces hang over a banquet-hall length farmhouse-style table in the great room surrounded by a menagerie of chairs upholstered in various jewel-tone shades of velveteen. Altogether, bless its poor little decorative heart, it feels to Your Mama like looking dead in the glassy eyes of a deliriously happy seizure, if there could be such a thing.
The kitchen, which looks to Your Mama like a very ordinary tract house kitchen hopped on steroids, has a walk-in pantry, breakfast nook and walls punched up with a particularly deep and disturbing teal color. A voluminous family/game room has built in bar with ziggurat canopy in one corner, more multi-colored walls than we care to acknowldege, an orange sectional sofa (that we l.o.v.e.), and various video games for the children and the child-like. Even the home fitness room at Monsieur Laliberté’s Las Vegas pad was painted in a near kaleidoscope of color and includes body-torture devices with baby blue seat cushions and back rests.
The mansion contains two master suites, according to listing information, including one with with fireplace, wood floors, dressing room and private balcony. Although a rather restrained palette prevails in this master bedroom, the dizzying array of disharmonious and warring patterns on rugs and bed linens take soul-crushing and dictatorial visual control of the room. Thankfully questionable paint choices and zebra pattern woven rugs disappear quickly with the owner and a can of paint. A set of double doors swing open into the attached terliting and bathing suite where a gigantic jetted tub with brass hardware was set into an over-sized marble plinth tucked into a big bay window lined with depressing glass block filled punctuations.
The too-green-for-the-desert grounds include a backyard ringed by trees and thick foliage where a fountain tumbles into a large heated swimming pool and a covered outdoor dining terrace has a fully equipped outdoor kitchen area complete with range and wall mounted microwave oven. Your Mama can only hope and pray that outdoor dining area has been fitted with a misting system lest diners melt into puddles of human goo just like creme brulée set out in the rabid desert heat.
Property records reveal that the same Quebecois holding company that prop records show as the taxpaying owner of the above-discussed house in Las Vegas also owns a hillside abode tucked up in the Post Office area of Beverly Hills, CA. Property records show the 4,261 square foot two-bedroom residence was purchased way back in June of 1995 for $2,250,000.
The children will note that Monsieur Laliberté’s mansions in Beverly Hills, CA and Las Vegas, NV are real estate child’s play compared to some of the other dee–luxe digs in the artsy entrepreneur’s property portfolio. Naturally the native Montrealian maintains a home base near his home town. Since sometime in the 1990s Monsieur Laliberté has owned a large and lavish estate on the private Lac du Moulin in Montreal’s suburban outskirt Mont Saint-Bruno. It is here where Monsieur Laliberté threw a much gossiped about annual Bacchanalia reportedly attended by leading lights, luminaries, off-duty members of the po–po and various b-list pleasure seekers who were asked to sign confidentiality agreements before admittance. The annual soiree stretched for several days each June and allegedly included internationally known djs, drug-fueled orgies and theatrical entrances by the shirtless and fire breathing master of ceremonies, Monsieur Laliberté. After numerous complaints from neighbors Monsieur Laliberté was compelled to move his notoriously lubricious shindig in 2003 to an air base of some sort where, by all accounts, it now cuts a far less hedonistic rug than than when it was held within the confines of Monsieur Laliberté’s heavily secured private domain in Mont Saint-Bruno.
In August of 2007, Monsieur Laliberté forked over a very-billionaire $29,000,000 to purchase a sprawling oceanfront compound with 10 bedrooms and 14 full and 4 half poopers located in the über-deluxe Mauna Kea Resort in Kamuela on the Big Island of Hawaii. A peep and poke through the somewhat confusing property records indicates that the same corporate entity, also with the same mailing address as Cirque du Soliel headquarters in Montreal, that purchased the Kamuela compound also owns at least two other far less lavish nearby properties.
Of course, Your Mama know know a donut hole from a diamond ring so we can’t say with any authority what Monsieur Laliberté does with then these two smaller homes in Hawaii. Perhaps they house staff, serve as over-flow guest quarters for visiting members of the Cirque or, maybe, each gets used by Mister Laliberté’s two baby mommas when they bring his brood of five giblets to visit? Who knows?
listing photos: Re/Max Central