Just when one thought the doors had closed on 2013 and its seemingly endless roster of nine-figure listings, here's a 19th-century Manhattan townhouse that just this weekend hit the market for a jaw-dropping $114,077,000. Vincent Viola, the owner of the Florida Panthers, and his invitation designer wife, Teresa, bought the house for $20M in 2005; according to the Times, Teresa methodically traveled the world to gain inspiration for the renovation, learning just how to festoon every square inch of their 20,000 square feet (plus an additional 2,500 square feet of outdoor space) in something conspicuously over the top, effectively turning each of the 19 rooms into a microcosm of something fancy spotted oversees.
Take, for example, the 900-square-foot dining room, which got the Versailles treatment (far from a new design strategy), or the library with "a two-story rendition of Kipling's poem 'If,' hand-stenciled by an artisan who has designed custom Christmas cards for the White House and the Vatican." Elsewhere behind the limestone facade perch a heated indoor pool, a panic room, floors made from old railroad ties, a Venetian-onyx elevator (Teresa "went on worldwide shopping sprees to find precise shades of Venetian onyx," according to the Times), gold-leafed walls, coffered ceilings, every possible breed of marquetry and inlaid wood, a red velvet home theater, a rose quartz "hers" bath and an onyx "his," and—and this may be the only thing in the entire place that's not inspired by Europe—"a balcony reminiscent of her favorite theater in Queens."
This palace is but yet another maiden debuting at the "Era of the $100 Million House" ball, in NYC alone joining a 62,000-square-foot home listed for $130M (the city's largest and priciest); a duplex asking $115M; and a penthouse looking for $125M. Of course, what the brokerbabble calls an "unrivaled modern-day trophy home" isn't actually the country's priciest—and not by a landslide. It's a whole $26M less than the newly PriceChopped $140M ask of the Connecticut estate holding the title of the nation's most expensive mansion—excluding rumored $150M listings, of course—and $21M less than a Dallas spread asking $135M. The highest price ever actually received for a single-family home in the United States? A Silicon Valley manse that sold in January for $117.5M. It's also worth noting that for just about the same price—$115M—one can also buy a waterfront mansion in Istanbul with far, far blander decor. So yes, bring on the Brazilian travertine!