SUNDAY TIMES - Because who doesn't need 21 bathrooms and a chopper just for show?
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Sunday Times Business By Bloomberg, 2017-03-19 00:00:00.0

Because who doesn't need 21 bathrooms and a chopper just for show?

What a house going for $250-million looks like. Don't overlook the roof helicopter, which doesn't actually fly.
Image: Bruce Makowsky/BAM Luxury Development

It ticks the obvious boxes any self-respecting billionaire would demand: 12 bedrooms, 21 bathrooms, three kitchens, six bars, a massage room and spa, fitness centre, two wine cellars, and a 25m infinity pool.

But to justify its $250-million price tag (R3.2-billion) as the most expensive house yet to go on the market in the US, this 3530m² mansion in Bel Air comes with countless toys.

It seems nothing exceeds like excess, but - even in a growing trend of gigamansions - this piece of real estate has created a stir.

A helicopter sits perched on the roof, but there is no possibility of a joy ride. This is a "non-working" helicopter that is not allowed to actually land and take off; it's there purely for show.

An oversized Leica camera sculpture dominates the living area. For a tycoon too weary to swim laps, a mobile propeller is there to transport the "swimmer" from one side of the pool to the other.

Included in the price are a car collection worth $30-million and six-figure Roberto Cavalli table settings.

Among the objets d'art scattered across the home's four floors are jewel-encrusted guitars, giant black-and-white photographs of Cher (don't ask), and an onyx stone sculpture of a Hermès Birkin bag.

But there is a glaring omission: there are no books, just a life-sized photo of a bookshelf w ith biographies of rock stars and Hollywood icons.

Despite publicity, no one has taken out their chequebooks. Any takers? Somebody? ... Anybody?

A wall of candy dispensers ensures the sweet tooth is always catered for. No, the house does not come with a dentist. Image: Bruce Makowsky/BAM Luxury Development

The plush cinema comes with Hermès blankets. Even the mega-wealthy sometimes get cold feet. Image: Bruce Makowsky/BAM Luxury Development

This stainless-steel sculpture of a Leica camera - with leather accents - dominates the living area. Snap! Image: Bruce Makowsky/BAM Luxury Development