Thursday, March 20, 2008

Le Rêve!

SELLERS: Hubert and Norma Humphrey
LOCATION: Trammel Road, Cumming, GA
PRICE: $45,000,000
SIZE: 47,000 square feet (approx.), 7 bedrooms, 12 full and 11 half bathrooms
DESCRIPTION: Le Rêve! One of the most significant premier estates in the world! This European inspired home was designed by noted architects Norman Askins and sits on 78 gently rolling acres north of Atlanta. The property features a golf course, lake, tennis court, stables, guest house, home theater, 2 lane bowling.

YOUR MAMAS NOTES: No children, despite it's extraordinary size and Ritz Carlton like day-core, the pictures above are not of a hotel or a corporate retreat, but rather the private home of Hubert and Norma Humphrey just outside of Atlanta, Georgia. A private home!

According to a recent article in the Atlanta Journal Constitution that was forwarded to Your Mama by Georgia Peach, the obviously stinking rich Hubert Humphrey, a former freight train conductor who founded a marketing and mortgage company called World Leadership Group, spent three years building their dream mega-manse called Le Rêve, which was only completed in 2007. For some reason unknown to Your Mama, the Humphreys have already put their recently completed "European inspired" behemoth up for sale with a blistering $45,000,000 price tag.

Perhaps it's just to big for a couple middle aged empty nesters? Imagine that.

Jeezis, Mary and Joseph children, how many times have we seen screamingly rich people spend years and tens of millions of dollars building gigantic residential shrines to their vast wealth only to whip around and put them up for sale before the paint is dry or the staff have time to unpack their uniforms?

The two examples of such real estate excess that come quickly to mind are Fleur de Lys, the silly sized $125,000,000 Saperstein pile in Los Angeles, and Champ d'Or in Denton, TX, the 48,000 square foot residential ree-dick-u-losity that carried a whopping $59,550,000 asking price and is widely rumored to have been (recently) sold. Both properties were quickly flipped back onto the market very shortly after being completed.

The lesson for all you Richie Riches out there who ache and pine for a 40,000+ square foot residence is that herculean houses are generally far too large in which to live comfortably. We didn't say they're too large to entertain on a massive scale or house a few polygamist families, we said they're too large for most people and their immediate family to live comfortably, and there is a radical difference between those things.

Perhaps the best way to absorb the overwhelming magnitude of Le Rêve is by the numbers. Are you ready puppies, because the numbers are a-stounding and have Your Mama reaching for a giant gin and tonic to steady our nerves. Here we go:

Ninety acres of rolling (and mostly manicured) grounds, 47,000 square feet spread over 4 floors, 300 miles of high-tech wiring, 82 rooms, (a shocking) 62 televisions, 7 bedrooms, 23 terlits spread through 12 full and 11 half bathrooms, a 12 car heated and cooled garage, 10 fireplaces, a 4-acre private lake, a 2 lane bowling alley, 2 elevators and a private 18 hole golf course called the Humphrey National. Oh, and the steel and gold leaf front gates weigh 7,800 damn pounds.

Some of the interior spaces, which were done up by Miz Humphrey with a team of three decorators, include a 28 foot long foyer, a spiraling stair case in a rotunda, living and dining rooms, offices, den, exercise room, computer room, a keeping room (whatever that is), library, a family room with at least 4 televisions, a virtual golf room, and a home theater modeled after the Fabulous Fox in downtown Atlanta. And that's not to mention the massage room, the toy train room, and an arcade room. Yikes.

Is it just Your Mama, or do others also think that rotundas are best reserved for civic and commercial structures?

In addition dozens of acres of lawns that surely require a half dozen groundskeepers be mowing 24-hours a day, the extensive and sprawling grounds include an enormous heated swimming pool, pool house, spa, a private playground for the grand kiddies, stables, tennis court, a 1,200 foot long great lawn/allee, (extremely expensive to maintain) formal gardens, and a guest house, because there's simply no room to squeeze guests into the 47,000 square foot main house.

What we really want to know is how much space has been provided for staff because a house this grandiose needs a huge number of full time people to answer the door, scrub the terlits, whip up meals, and to provide directions so that guests will not get lost on their way from one side of the house to the other.

We're not sure how many people in the Atlanta area can afford a $45,000,000 house, not to mention the yearly maintenance and taxes, but did anyone call Elton John, because just might be ready to trade up from his big spread at the Park Place on Peachtree condo tower in Atlanta's Buckhead neighborhood.

P.S. The house has it's own website. Oh. My. Gawd.

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