Billionaire founder of Netscape has failed to sell his Palm Beach mansion in a year; it remains on the market for £105 million (or 754% more than he paid for it in 1999)
Four times married, a father of four and a collector of rather large gin palaces, Texan James H. Clark founded Netscape in 1994 and earnt $2 billion (the equivalent of $3 billion, £2.3 billion, €2.6 billion or درهم11 billion today) from that project when it was sold to AOL in 1998.
Clark paid just $11 million for a Palm Beach mansion named ‘Il Palmetto’ in 1999 (the equivalent of $16.2 million, £12.3 million €13.8 million or درهم59.5 million today) and spent four years renovating the 5.46-acre property. He placed it for sale for $137 million (£105 million, €117 million or درهم503 million) last August but has plainly failed to attract a buyer.
Built to the designs of the Swiss architect Maurice Fatio (1897 – 1943) as an “Italian Renaissance-style palazzo” in 1930, the house – which is also known as 1500 South Ocean Boulevard – is described by selling agents Sotheby’s International Realty as “without peer in Palm Beach.” The building was subjected to a four year renovation by Mr Clark, reportedly extends to around 44,200 square foot and aside from including 10 bedrooms, 14 full-bathrooms and 12 partial-bathrooms, also comes with a 20,000 bottle wine cellar and a second cellar for an additional 1,000 crates.
Architecturally “a series of pavilions connected by cloisters,” the main house is dominated by formal entertaining areas with 16th century carved ceilings and accessed from a private tunnel underneath the road is a 2-bedroom beach house with an infinity pool that “blends into the turquoise waters of the Atlantic Ocean.” To the other boundary, on Lake Worth, is a boathouse with motorised launches for two vessels and a 2-bedroom apartment above.