Huge news about Miami's storied Casa Casuarina, the real estate noisemaker famed for (1) its past as Gianni Versace's party palace (or a "one-time Xanadu of boys in teeny bathing suits," as Curbed Miami most accurately describes), (2) old colonial-style bones that almost stoop with the weight of all of Versace's opulent crap, including a gilded, six-person party shower, countless square feet of frescoes, and 24-karat gold mosaics, (3) being the scene of Versace's murder (he was gunned down on the front steps), and (4) asking an eye-popping $125M, then, slowly and painfully, chopping the price until, at $75M, it asked just 60 percent of its primary ask: come 10 a.m. on September 17, all 10 bedrooms and innumerable stained glass panels are being heaved onto the auction block. According to the South Florida Business Journal, bidders will have to escrow $3M with the current owner's law firm, plus "show proof of funds of $40M."
The estate and its majority owner, telecom tycoon Peter Loftin, are still entrenched in a sticky legal battle, a tangle of default, debt, and one very pissed-off mass-market jeans label that, as the New York Times once wrote, takes "some of the shine off this trophy home." See, the owners of Jordache Enterprises have been vying to snatch the property out from under Loftin's financially fumbling feet for well over a year, but have thus far been foiled by the owner's attempts to sell with an "outrageously inflated" listing price. A bankruptcy auction may be Jordache's big chance to finally own the place for whatever nebulous pricepoint that is its "true value." And while it's impossible to know just how the chips may fall, it seems pretty indisputable that one particularly flamboyant fashion designer will be doing a few turns in his grave if a mass-market jeans company takes hold of his precious estate.
In any case, do get a refresher on the listing photos, below:
· Holy Crap! The Versace Mansion Will Be Sold at Auction Sept. 17. [Curbed Miami]
· Bankruptcy auction approved for former Versace mansion [South Florida Business Journal]
· All Casa Casuarina coverage [Curbed National]