It’s a 8,300-square-foot faux Mediterranean villa with five bedrooms, seven bathrooms, a wine cellar, tasting room, game room, theater room, and exercise room.
Plus two master suites. Phew! I’m getting exhausted by all this excessive extravagance. And
it has an elevator, room for a pool (what, no pool already?) and views from Mount Diablo to Lafayette!
And, it’s all yours for $5.4 million—or $28,509 per month.
In my demented way of thinking, I can see how the audacious hideousness of this house actually sounds perfect for some Merrill Lynch refugee who fled that firm just in time to, of course, cash in on his/her generous John Thain-approved accelerated bonus, which was paid for by the $15 billion in bailout money that Merrill Lynch and Bank of America received from U.S. taxpapers.
With our nation in a recession, or GD2 (Great Depression 2), as my pessimistic friends like to call it, and our world in GEC (Global Economic Crisis), I think that the only person who would be able to afford this sprawling mega house would be a recipient of some generous executive payout.
And, by the way, it appears that this home has been on the market for 65 days. Gee, why?
Big Ugly Houses, Chapter 5: In checking out this Sugar Loaf area home, I found that it was represented by a certain realtor who has a knack for representing some really prime examples of Big Ugly Househood.
Here’s this realtor’s other prize property: a 16,000-square-foot, two-story, seven-bedroom monster of “luxury” on just one acre
in Pleasanton’s exclusive Ruby Hills neighborhood. It’s available for $10 million, or $52,795 per month. And, it’s been on the market for 86 days. (Again, I wonder why?)
“This estate has an amazing view,” this realtor’s ad reads.
It’s also got a six-car garage! A stunning iron- and bronze-cap floating staircase (whatever the hell that means)! Six fireplaces! An amazing kitchen with two large islands and granite counters! A game room!
A “teen room” (Wonder if this “teen room” would be useful for the after-school sex, pot, and meth parties that I often hear about occurring amongst ennui-afflicted teens in our affluent suburbs).
And a “banquet-size formal dining room” with an adjacent “incredible temperature-controlled wine cave.” Gosh, I get all tingly and pea-green with envy reading about all this superb luxury.
As for those seven bedrooms? All large and “en suite.” And the master suite has a separate exercise room, so that you, master and mistress of the manor, don’t have to mingle with all the riff-raff of the rest of your family. Or the housekeeper, gardener and nanny (who are perhaps in the country illegally and whom you pay under the table.)
Besides the wine cellar, another common feature of monster homes like this one seems to be a home theater, which this Ruby Hills estate has with a vengeance. Not only does it have seating for 20 guests, it also has “its own ticket taker booth!” Oh, goody!
Outside, there are “cascading waterfalls” to a pool, spa, and bridge over a 7,000-gallon koi pond, lush lawns, beautifully landscaped firepit and loggia with flat-screen TV.
Yeah, what F. Scott Fitzgerald said: “The rich are different from you and me.” Or, I suspect, in the case of buyers of homes like these, out here in the East Bay suburbs, we’re mostly dealing with the wanne-be rich, the ones who, Gatsby-like, are desperate for some fleeting idea of American respect and status. So desperate, that they choose to assuage this desperation by buying the garish and cheesy displays of supposed wealth and status that these homes offer.
Cascading waterfalls! Wine cellars! Home theaters!
Then again, if you consider one of these monstrosities a dream home for you and your family–well, good luck in life. You’re gonna need it.
Yeah, sorry to all those who think these houses are the epitome of good taste and inevitable rewards to people who work hard and smart for such privileges. To me, these homes absolutely reek of desperation, of a sad, sick longing to be respected, envied, and admired.
P.S. I e-mailed the realtor a copy of this post. Let’s see if she chooses to respond.