They Call It Versailles

Buckle your real estate safety belts, butter beans, because those busy beavers at Curbed snagged another mouth watering snippet of the recently released documentary The Queen of Versailles, a feature length film that chronicles the bizarro plight of recession-affected time share mogul David Siegel and his publicity lovin’ wife Jackie to build the largest house in America. In Orlando. For reals.

The unfinished, palace-sized pad (shown finished in renderings, above) sits on 1,250 feet of everglade-y water front in an affluent, gated enclave on Lake Butler, spans somewhere around 90,000 square feet and was custom designed with a slew of such necessary features as 13 bedrooms and 21 full and 2 half bathrooms. Let’s not forget the triple-height, hangar-sized grand ballroom with twin floating staircases (below); all ten kitchens and a sushi bar; four fireplaces; and a 10,000 square foot health spa with indoor swimming pool. And that’s just the start…

When finished the still-unfinished house will be equipped with a two-lane bowling alley and arcade; an indoor roller rink that converts to an ice rink in the basement; two movie theaters—one for the kids one for the grown ups; a 4,000 square foot closet in the master bedroom; and a 20-car garage.

Naturally the planned interior architectural details and day-core, as seen in renderings included with marketing materials for the over-blown property (above), push and bully their way well beyond opulent and deep into the decoratively dangerous territory of gaudy and grotesque. But that isn’t really a surprise, is it now? No, it’s not.

The 10-plus acre grounds were designed with a piazza-like, half acre terrace off the back of the house that wraps around three sides of a resort-scaled, infinity edge swimming pool. Mister Siegal is in the resort bizness after all. Also planned also three grotto spas; two tennis courts—one, for some reason, with stadium seating; a private dock with (an also not finished) open-air boat house; and a full-sized baseball field designed to do double duty as a parking large for large parties and events.

The Siegels have had the bloated mega-mansion on the market since 2010 when it came up for sale unfinished with a $75,000,000 price tag or finished with all it’s finey with a $100,000,000 asking price. It’s now listed for $65,000,000 (uncompleted) and $90,000,000 (completed).

If the house doesn’t sell, so Missus Siegel recently told the crew at The Today Show, with filmmaker Lauren Greenfield sitting right next to her, she and Mister Siegel, their 8 children and whatever live-in staff they maintain will move into the elephantine house.

The spectacular story of real estate schadenfreude gets even more preposterous, children. Are you ready for this? While Missus Siegel—sometimes alongside Miz Greenfield—goes around and chit-chats with The Media about the movie, the house and her family, Mister Siegel has done filed a lawsuit against the filmmaker (and others) for alleged defamation. He says the film doesn’t tell the whole story, which is that his recession-hobbled time share operation is now on the mend and that he and the missus plan to continue and complete construction on their hyper-huge mansion, Versailles. They call it Versailles. Of course they call it Versailles.

Listen, chickens, these people can do whatever they want with whatever money they have. Fair or not, it’s their money to do as they please. What puzzles and perplexes Your Mama is why someone would do this with all that money.  Mister Siegel himself said the exterior design of the house was “kind of copied” from top three floors of the Paris Las Vegas hotel and casino in Las Vegas. Seriously, he said that. Watch the clip.

Before any of you people get all hot under the collar and smart-mouthed with Your Mama and start hollerin’ about how we’re a socialist (or some shit) and ought to clam up our brazenly opinionated flap-trap, keep in mind Mister and Missus Siegel signed up for all the publicity and nonsense. They could have told all us crazy property gossips, “It’s a very large home we intend to occupy as a family. We have no other comment. Thank you.” Instead, they allowed a prominent filmmaker to follow them around for three years in order to make a movie about them and that house. Harsh as it may seem—and actually be—the Siegels invited whatever criticisms (and congratulations) they get as a result of their very public and unapologetically profligate real estate ways. We don’t make the rules, but them is the rules of the modern day media world.

listing photos: Florida Ranch Lands

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