A sprawling Napa Valley estate has hit the market for $5.5 million with one dubious distinction: That multimillion dollar price tag makes the elegant five-bedroom property the single most expensive foreclosure in the United States.
Known as Villa Vigne, the 40-acre Saint Helena estate was built by California developer Nathan Topol in 2000 as a vacation residence. But four years after Topol was killed in a tragic car accident in 2013, the estate has fallen into the hands of creditors, realtor.com reports.
Built in the style of a traditional French wine estate, Villa Vigne boasts five bedrooms, 8.5 bathrooms, a gated entrance and an infinity pool overlooking vineyards. Almost every room in the house has a panoramic view while a large open terrace looks onto rolling hills and vineyards.
“You have a 180-degree view in the center of Napa Valley,” listings agent Julie Larsen told realtor.com. “All you see is the valley and vineyards below.”
Larsen estimates that the property, which is in great condition but had most of its appliances seized as part of the foreclosure process, needs approximately $500,000 worth of repairs.
Located at 130 Auberge Road, the villa is positioned in one of the priciest ZIP codes in California. Clearly, however, even a mansion as majestic as Villa Vigne isn’t immune to foreclosure when an owner fails to pay.
Indeed, in the year before this villa was seized, nearly 27,000 other homes were foreclosed in California. As wildfires continue to ravage northern California this summer, others could be at risk of delinquency and eventual foreclosure.
No one knows for sure when the owner’s financial difficulties started or whether the accident contributed to the foreclosure. That said, it’s clear that such a stunning property will not stay unoccupied for long — Larsen is currently listing it as a place that could be renovated to any taste.
“I think with the view you can’t go wrong,” she said.