The South Beach mansion once owned by Italian designer Gianni Versace, and the place he was fatally shot, was sold at auction for $41.5 million on Tuesday. NBC 6's Christina Hernandez reports.
The South Beach mansion once owned by Italian designer Gianni Versace, and the place he was fatally shot, was sold at auction for $41.5 million on Tuesday.
The auction of the mansion, now called Casa Casuarina, began at 10 a.m. with bidding opening at $25 million.
The winning bid was placed by VM South Beach LLC, a group owned in part by the Nakash family, which also owns Jordache Enterprises.
"That's a bargin, we bought history," Chairman Joe Nakash said. "Unbelievable, number one property in Miami Beach."
Jordache has five other South Beach hot spots including Hotel Ocean, Hotel Barcelona, Hotel Henrosa, the Breakwater and the Thompson.
Versace was fatally shot on his front steps in 1997 by serial killer Andrew Cunanan. The designer bought the mansion in 1992 and spent $33 million renovating the property, adding another wing and making numerous upgrades.
VM South Beach LLC will operate the mansion as a hotel.
We're going to keep it the way it is. We paid 41 and a half million dollars for it and it's going to stay as is," Nakash said. "It's history. You stay here everyday, you will see how many people take a picture of this place and the inside is the most beautiful thing you ever saw."
The ocean front property was bought by its current owner in 2000 and was most recently used as a hotel. A bankruptcy court appointed Fisher Auction Company to put the property up for auction.
"We got calls from all over the world, from the highest celebrity to the folks in Dubai," Lamar Fisher said.
Last year, the 23,000 square foot mansion was listed at $125 million. The estate, which was constructed in 1930, has 10 bedrooms and 11 bathrooms and features a 54-foot mosaic pool lined with 24-karat gold.
"This is one of the most recognizable properties in the world. It's iconic," said Jill Eber, with the real estate group The Jills.
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