Sale of a mythical villa

Three years after it was put on the market, the former home of Belgian King Leopold II was finally sold to Mr. Rinat Akhmetov for 200 million euros.

Built in 1830, Villa Les Cèdres, with a living area of 18,000 m² on a breathtaking 14-hectare botanical park, was acquired by the Italian spirits group "Campari" during a takeover bid by the "Société des Produits Marnier-Lapostolle" (SPML). Thus, the villa had first been owned by Alexandre Marnier-Laspostolle before being attached to "SPML" (Société des Produits Marnier-Lapostolle). 

This unique manor house with ten rooms has an Olympic-size swimming pool, 25 heated greenhouses with 20,000 species, including 14,000 very rare tropical species, as well as an amazing chapel. All of which qualifies it as a true corner of paradise.

Villa les Cèdres

Initially announced at a sale price of up to one billion euros in 2016, this historic property located in Saint-Jean-Cap-Ferrat, the "peninsula of billionaires", had been described as the most expensive in the world. It thus lost its title when it was put up for sale by the Italian group and acquired in exchange for a much lower sum than that mentioned earlier by the French press.

This immense residence, in the heart of a vast park filled with majestic pines, has long been the subject of debate as to its mysterious sale price. Faced with Nice Matin newspaper estimating it at 1 billion euros, Le Figaro estimating it at between 300 and 500 million euros and Bloomberg at 350 million euros, Campari, for its part, did not wish to comment on these allegations and preferred to remain discreet about its official sale price.

The happy and current owner of this 19th century property, announced as the richest man in Ukraine, has more than one string to his bow. Indeed, in addition to being a Ukrainian businessman, he is also a politician, economist, philanthropist and also president of the Chakhtar Donetsk football club. Moreover, he is the founder of "System Capital Management JSC", defined as the largest industrial conglomerate in Ukraine.

Thus, the acquisition of one of the most legendary properties in France would, according to Akhmetov's company SCM Holdings Limited, embody a long-term investment. The latter is not, however, the only one he owns today. Indeed, its real estate portfolio includes an apartment at London's One Hyde Park development.

To buy a villa in Saint-Jean-Cap-Ferrat, browse our selection.