Nestled in California’s prime Hillsborough—part of San Francisco’s Bay Area—is a majestic, sprawling mansion called De Guigne Court. Listed last year at a whopping $100 million, it is the wondrous result of high-class taste, blended with superior architecture and interior design.
The current owner and resident is 76-year-old Christian de Guigne IV, whose family is of “social royalty” and has maintained possession of the home — and its surrounding 47.5 acres — for more than 150 years.
Christian de Guigne II, in conjunction with notable architecture firm Bliss & Faville, allegedly built the 16,000-square-foot Mediterranean-style home in 1918 (conflicting reports say the home was as wedding gift from Christian de Guigne I in 1913).
Currently, the superb layout includes seven bedrooms, nine bathrooms (another account states 11), a formal dining room, a ballroom, a flower-arranging room, a swimming pool designed by landscape architect Thomas Church, and six rooms designated for staff.
Christian de Guigne III hired interior decorator Anthony Hail in the 1960s to outfit the home, which resulted in De Guigne Court’s feature in Interior Design & Decoration in 1966. (Think: marble floors, velvet-tufted couches, and animal print rugs.) Last year, the home was named one of the country’s top five most expensive.
Although the lavish estate has made headlines for its hefty price tag and exquisite architecture, it may be best known for its complex past, centering on a long line of socialites. Generations of De Guignes maintained highly opulent, almost fairy-tale-like lifestyles throughout the years while residing at the mansion.
After the property’s sale, owner Christian IV sought to retain “life estate,” which would allow him to live there for the remainder of his life. It has been rumored that his peculiar request was off-putting for potential buyers, as De Guigne Court was recently taken off the market.