Remember Sandy Weill? The erstwhile CEO of Citigroup seems to be making the best of this financial crisis even after his former company was bailed out for $360 billion last year. (You'll recall he also took the company jet to Cabo last year immediately following said bailout.) Earlier this month, Weill made another attempt at becoming America's least lovable retired person by purchasing a $31,000,000 wine country estate on the edge of Sonoma. Perhaps the most offensive thing about the Shanel estate (other than it's name, taken from a contraction of the original owner's last name and that of Coco Chanel), is the fact that the 2-bed, 2-bath main house couldn't be bothered to cram more sleeping quarters in to 11,605 square feet. (Although it does have 8 fireplaces and radiant heat to keep you warm when all that cash starts to make the place feel a little chilly.) The estate is a mere 15 years old, but Architect Sandy Walker of San Francisco dressed the old girl in "centuries old lichen covered roof tiles" and rescued "200-year old rough hewn ceiling beams" from a barn in Nevada that once belonged to a Pony Express rider, presumably in order to give the home some subtle notes of authenticity.
If architectural elements fail to get the conversation started, then the 8 acres of 90-point rated syrah vines and room for 140 cases in the marble-floored wine cellar might help. Guests will also have to make themselves comfortable in the 1,655 square-foot, 2-bed guest house, but have 362 acres of woodlands, meadows and a lake all "teeming with game" at their disposal for those days when being rich enough to buy an entire chain of grocery stores just isn't enough. There's also room for six cars in the garage, five horses in the stable and, as the listing states, it even comes with its own fire truck.
· Sanford Weill Snags West Coast Outpost [The Real Estalker]
· SHANEL [Luxury Portfolio]