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OPULENCE & SPLENDOUR

Luxury and the arts From houses to cars and from Hockney to van Dyck, a profile of the best and the worst

A house that hasn’t sold in 14 years

‘Cotswold style’ mansion dramatically reduced in price after 14 years on the market

 

Americans love all things British and they especially love to replicate our architecture. In the Northern Californian town of Hillsborough, a fine example is a 35,000 square foot mansion named The Tobin Clark Estate.

 

Bought by a businessman and Republican donor named Sam J. Bamieh in 1992 for £2 million ($3.2 million) and also known as the “House-On-Hill”, the property has been described as “one of the most spectacular residences ever created”. The “Cotswold Tudor” house, which stands in 5.9 acres, was built to the designs of David Adler in 1931 for the Hibernia bank heiress Celia Tobin Clark and has undergone a £11.7 million ($19 million) renovation during the current owner’s tenure.

 

An aerial shot of The Tobin Clark Estate
An aerial shot of The Tobin Clark Estate
The building could as easily be found in the Cotswolds as California
The Tobin Clark Estate, 40 Verbalee Lane, Hillsborough, California, CA 90410: The building could as easily be found in the Cotswolds as California

On the market sporadically since 1999 at prices as high as £27.7 million ($45 million), The Tobin Clark Estate includes 9 bedrooms and 12 bathrooms and highlights number a 55-foot long music room with 15-foot high ceilings and 17th century English wooden paneling, a bar and a library. There is a 6-car garage, a 1,700 bottle wine cellar and a particular highlight has to be the mature, formal gardens.

 

The music room features 17th century paneling
The music room features 17th century paneling
The library has been described as "one of the finest rooms in America"
The library has been described as “one of the finest rooms in America”
The dining room has been the scene of dinners for world leaders and royalty
The dining room has been the scene of dinners for world leaders and royalty
Mr Bamieh's study has no doubt been the scene of many high level discussions
Mr Bamieh’s study has no doubt been the scene of many high level discussions
Drinking is plainly a priority in the Bamieh household given the quality of this superb bar
Drinking is plainly a priority in the Bamieh household given the quality of this superb bar
The wine cellar accommodates up to 1300 bottles
The wine cellar accommodates up to 1300 bottles
One of 12 bedrooms
One of 12 bedrooms
This bathroom wouldn't look out of place in "Dallas" or "Dynasty"
This bathroom wouldn’t look out of place in “Dallas” or “Dynasty”
An outdoor swimming pool is located within the grounds
An outdoor swimming pool is located within the grounds

Joel Goodrich now seek £14.7 million ($23.888 million) for The Tobin Clark Estate. Bamieh is also prepared to finance 40% of the purchase price at 3.8% at a higher sale price.

 

Bamieh, the owner of an export business and a naturalised American whom was born in Palestine, has a colourful past. He was held hostage for four months by aides of King Fahd in Saudi Arabia in 1986 and only released on the condition he ceased to pursue a claim of $1.4 million against a member of his family. At The Tobin Clark Estate, he has hosted many dignitaries including President George H. W. Bush, Preisdent Gerald Ford, King Hussein of Jordan, President Richard Nixon, President Ronald Reagan and Baroness Thatcher. During the tenure of whomever owns the estate next, though, visitors are far more likely to be Mark Zuckerberg, Larry Ellison or Sean Parker.

 

 

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