It’s not only price tags and square footage that make celebrity houses special. These properties have the most outrageous features you could only see in public spaces like water parks or airports.
While some stars own castles and islands, others make do with mansions and smaller estates. That doesn’t, however, stop them from making certain additions to turn their luxury homes into ultimate star dwellings. Think piers, private boat docks, home theaters, and game rooms, just even more obnoxious and ridiculously expensive.
Each celebrity has his or her own hobby, whim, or quirk to satisfy, so you’ll occasionally see not only mindless luxury features around but also useful things like recording studios and sports rooms. But, of course, some of the things in this list just don’t make any sense. Moat, wine cave, personal zoo?
Anything a human mind can conjure and money can buy can apparently become a part of some star’s property. Remember Michael Jackson’s Neverland Ranch with its amusement park and zoos or Playboy Mansion waterfalls and tennis courts? Well, there are few things that can outdo those, but we managed to scrape up a few.
16. Oprah’s Equestrian Estate
Oprah Winfrey is a real estate queen. She owns some the most expensive mansions and homes around the country. One of her most recent purchases is a $29 million Montecito estate outfitted entirely for equestrian purposes. The 5,016-square-foot main house is surrounded by sprawling fields, stables, and putting greens.
Besides the numerous outdoor lounging areas, there is a horse arena and a specially fenced green lawn for training the beasts and horse riding.
A free form swimming pool is hardly an exciting feature these days, as it’s something of a regular thing for celebrity homes but there is also a private koi pond surrounded with a wild bog garden in the area with a terrace overlooking the water source. Now that’s something.
15. Notch’s Candy Room
‘Minecraft’ developer Markus “Notch” Persson dropped $70 million for the most expensive Beverly Hills mansion on record two years ago to live on cases of Dom Perignon and, apparently, candy.
The house that has an area of 23,000 square feet boasts 8 bedrooms, 15 bathrooms, 18-seat screening room, and a subterranean car showroom for 16 cars. Not bad at all for a game programmer.
Estimated at $85, the property is outfitted with stuff like $5,600 Toto Neorest toilets, 18 foot Onyx dining room table, and Roberto Cavalli $3,700 chairs. The Dylan’s Candy Bar-style candy room alone is worth $200,000, and it’s filled with $50,000 worth of candy.
14. Jerry Seinfeld’s Baseball Field
Jerry Seinfeld is a lot of things: actor, producer, comedian. He is also a staunch baseball fan. To enjoy his hobby, the showbiz maven added a full size baseball field to his East Hampton estate, which he purchased from the rock star Billy Joel back in 2000 for $32 million.
While the field features benches for spectators, the estate itself boasts a 7-bedroom main house with two pools, playroom, nursery, dressing room, and den, additional 3-bedroom house, a 5-bedroom guest cottage, and a 22-car garage.
The 12-acre estate is only one of Seinfeld’s properties, and that is just their summer house. There isn’t a lot of luxury in the interiors, but the main house has been renovated with neutral colors and simple but sophisticated furniture. A Kohei Nawa deer head makes one of the more luxurious decor accents in the house.
13. 50 Cent’s Casino
50 Cent is trying to sell a mansion in Farmington, Connecticut for slightly under $6 million. Even before the rapper came across the 17-acre estate, it came with major bragging rights, belonging to Mike Tyson until 2003.
Since then, Connecticut real estate market didn’t change that much. The 50,000-square-foot mansion Cent bought for $4.1 million now costs around the same, although it was initially listed for a whopping $18.5 million.
What can $6 million buy you in Connecticut? Well, there’re at least $6 million worth of renovations, an approved helicopter landing, a home theater, a pool and a grotto, an indoor pool and hot tub, a nightclub, a recording studio, a basketball court and a full gym, guesthouses, and 25 bathrooms.
12. Jay Z & Beyoncé’s Bowling Alley
They may not own this lavish Hampton’s mansion, but Jay Z and Beyoncé briefly stayed, and even shot a music video there, paying $400,000 for the entire affair. Featuring 12 bedrooms, the mega mansion also boasts a heated swimming pool, an Olympic-sized tennis court, a recreation pavilion with a performance stage, and a walnut-clad library among other things.
Opening up with a grand foyer, the house sprawls across two storeys with several living rooms, a formal dining room with a fireplace, and a den with a wet bar. The 2,800-square-foot master suite features a sitting room and a private bar of its own, also boasting a dressing room and a grand en suite bathroom.
The lower level of the manse offers an extensive range of entertainment. There is an exclusive playroom for kids, a media room featuring 5 plasma screen televisions, a court for squash and racquetball, and its very own two-lane bowling alley designed in a futuristic style.
11. Aaron Spelling’s Skating Rink
Beverly Hills, 90210’s late producer Aaron Spelling built a luxury house called The Manor in 1988 in place of a demolished Bing Crosby home in Holmby Hills, Los Angeles. This spread has a 123-room house sprawling over 56,500 square feet, a bowling alley, a skating rink, and… a special room for gift wrapping. One of the floors was devoted entirely to Spelling’s wife’s closets and wardrobe.
And if you thought that was it, there is also a screening room, four 2-car garages, 16 carports, a tennis court, and, of course, a pool. With a parking lot for 100 vehicles, the residence was a fitting choice for a Formula 1 heiress, socialite Petra Ecclestone, who bought the house in 2011 for $85 million from Candy Spelling.
10. Oprah’s Man-Made Lake
Another one of Oprah’s luxury estates sits on 42 acres of land in Santa Barbara, California near her very own man-made lake stocked with rare fish. Along stands a 23,000-square-foot mansion with 6 bedrooms, 14 bathrooms, 10 fireplaces, and a home theater. Oh, but that’s not all. The property also features an outdoor entertainment area, a generous guesthouse with a pool, a teahouse, and a quarter-mile long driveway. Seems more like it?
As with all of Oprah’s estates, things get even grander with a large backyard filled with over 600 rose bushes that require a master rosarian to look after.
9. Bill Gates’ Caribbean Beach Sand
Bill Gates’ $123.54 million Medina, Washington estate is anything but modest. The 66,000-square-foot house took seven years and $63 million to build, so it’s not surprising that it has its own name. Meet Xanadu 2.0.
The house shaped with 500-year-old Douglas fir trees was constructed to reduce heat loss. Built into the environment, you can barely see its wooden façade drowning in the green landscape.
To make use of all that tech genius, Gates equipped his house with an automation system that allows to regulate temperature and lighting in every room. There are hidden speakers underneath wallpaper, $80,000 worth of computer screens displaying paintings and photographs, and an underwater music system in the pool.
8. Celine Dion’s Water Park
Jupiter Island, Florida. 2010. Celine Dion and husband Rene Angelil decide to turn their private 5.5 acres into an ultimate getaway that would not only have a 415 feet of private beach but also their very own water park. Because, why not?
Standing next to this kid’s fiesta is a 10,000-square-foot 5-bedroom house with pristine white interiors and 5 additional pavilions for guests, tennis, and pool lounging. The main house has a game room, a massage room, and an enormous master closet with electric racks and a shoe carousel.
Water features were indeed given a lot of space and special treatment. The 3 pools around the house each have their own purpose. The biggest one features waterslides and water gun stations along with a man-made river, while the other two are perfect for sunbathing and having guests over in a sunken fire pit.
7. Gisele Bündchen and Tom Brady’s Moat
Gisele Bündchen and Tom Brady once were the proud owners of a California mansion that had its own moat. The 14,000-square-foot manse in Brentwood, the couple constructed for themselves and their extended family, has only 6 bedrooms, but there is a gourmet kitchen, a library, a state-of-the-art gym, a pool, a spa, a motor court, a wine cellar, a yoga studio, and a moat filled with koi fish. Yeah.
During construction the couple tried to implement an eco-conscious approach, which included using recycled materials, photovoltaic solar panels, and water treatment systems.
Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie’s estate in the south of France also had a moat, formed by streams running through hidden tunnels. It’s definitely most unusual to have something like that at home nowadays.
6. Oprah’s Colorado Wine Cave
Oprah dropped $14 million on a house on 3 acres in the Telluride mountains last year. Seeing as the previous owner of this Colorado ski retreat was tech mogul Bob Wall, the home has quite a few cool systems inside.
Heated driveway sensors let Oprah know when someone arrives at her doorstep, while security cameras and automation system allow control of the estate from all around the world. A special irrigation system keeps the plants green even when she’s away. And a $70,000 bathtub doesn’t let water ever get cold.
Since it’s a cold area, where snow can lie for months and months, there is a Finnish spa with sauna and a 7-person hot tub to keep warm.
The house’s 56-foot-long wine cellar is definitely the star among amenities, though. Designed after an old Colorado mine shaft, it features a mine rail and a fitting cart. Wooden shelving built over irregular stone walls can host 1,600 bottles. And the sound effects top it off with such noises as dripping water and creaking wood, while “lantern-like lights” are programmed to flicker like they would in a real mine.
5. Bob Hope’s Volcano House Courtyard
British comedian Bob Hope had one of the most unique homes in the celebrity world. Designed by the famous architect John Lautner, the home takes after a shape of a volcano that creates an unusual spaceship-like courtyard within its walls.
Originally built out of wood, the house burned down and had to be rebuilt. The $50 million property, that now hangs around for $25 mil, boasts 9 bedrooms, 9 bathrooms, and two swimming pools, beautiful gardens, a tennis court, and a covered terrace that can host as many as 300 persons. The 6.18 acre property also features a guest house, a guest maid’s room, and a pond with a waterfall.
4. Michael Jackson’s Fairground and Zoo
Michael Jackson’s famed ranch is one of the most unusual celebrity homes ever. Bought by the singer in 1988, it consisted of 22 buildings. Jackson later added a private railway and fairground to the mix. Besides that, the 2,800-acre property hosted a series of zoo filled with all kinds of exotic animals.
When the singer moved out in 2005, the expansive Tudor manse was restored and Fairground turned into a zen garden.
In other aspects, the house is pretty much as any other celebrity estate. It has a resort size pool, a spa, a tennis court, and a chapel… wait, what? Don’t all celebrity homes have their own chapels? The church comes with major bragging rights. Elizabeth Taylor and Larry Fortensky got married there in 1991.
3. Playboy Mansion’s Hugh Hefner
Hugh Hefner’s home, the Playboy Mansion, hit the market at the beginning of this year for a whopping $200 million. Betting on its reputation, the seller definitely jacked up the price at least twice.
Built in 1927, the famed house, that got its party reputation in the 70s, comes with 6 acres of land, 22 rooms, a pool with waterfalls, a wine cellar, a game room, an outdoor kitchen, a gym, a barbecue area, and tennis courts. There is also a zoo somewhere.
The most unusual feature is, perhaps, Hugh Hefner himself. See, if you buy the Playboy Mansion, you also pay for old Hef to stay and live there for the rest of his life. If you wondered how that worked… well, how often will you be able to see an old man on the property of 6 acres and 22 rooms?
2. John Travolta’s Jet Runway
John Travolta outdid most of his fellow Hollywood colleagues with a private airstrip, complementing a 6,400-square-foot air-control tower-shaped house located 50 miles northwest of Orlando.
After moving into an exclusive fly-in community of Jumbolair in 2003, the actor was able to enjoy his Gulfstream and Boeing 707B without neighbors’ complaints and lawsuits. His previous fly-in community in Daytona did not appreciate all that noise.
A certified private pilot himself, Travolta owns not two but five aircraft. This particular home was designed specifically to accommodate two jets to always be ready “at a moment’s notice”. Travelling a lot for business and “personal reasons”, the airstrip seems to be working out great for Travolta.
1. Will Smith’s Zip Code
Prince of the Calabasas Castle, Will Smith shares his enormous estate in California’s Santa Monica Mountains with his wife Jada Smith and their kids, Jaden and Willow. Boasting its own lake, horse facilities, basketball court, tennis court, a sand volleyball court, and an area for playing golf, this property is so big, it has its own zip code. Boom!
Designed by Stephen Samuelson, the $20 million house took seven years to build, and was even threatened by destruction during a 2005 brushfire. The lucky survivor let its residents to enjoy a pond, a meditation room, a recording studio, a pool room, a screening room, and quite a few seating areas.
A rumor of sale surfaced in 2013, but the report turned out to be false. The now $42 million 25,000-square-foot Calabasas Castle is still the house the Fresh Prince of Bel-Air calls home.