LAKE PLACID — A sprawling five-building estate in Lake Placid, owned by Saratoga Springs philanthropists Michele and Ronald Riggi, hit the real estate market Thursday with an asking price of more than $31 million.
The property of more than 46 acres, called “House of Paradise” in the Berkshire Hathaway Adirondack Premier Properties listing, is located off Bear Cub Road near the historic John Brown Farm site.
Margie Philo, broker-owner of Berkshire Hathaway Adirondack Premier Properties, who is co-co-listing the property with real estate agent Justin McGiver, said she believes the asking price of $31,150,000 is the highest ever seen by Lake Placid. The only property in the area to list or sell so far was the Last Chance Ranch – on Adirondack Loj Road – which she said sold for $13 million in 2005.
The Berkshire Hathaway listing touts the Casa Del Paradiso property as “a majestic private estate rarely offered anywhere in the world.” They are five “primary buildings” on the property with a total of nine bedrooms, eight bathrooms and two half bathrooms, according to the listing. There is a main house with an underground tunnel leading to one of the property’s two guest houses, a “treehouse residence” and an Airstream “she poured”. Philo said the interior walls of the shed are covered in animal skins.
The property has a tennis/basketball court, indoor shooting range, lean-to and toboggan run, and the nearby Olympic ski jumping complex is visible from the property. Casa Del Paradiso is listed online at https://tinyurl.com/5dupjsxh.
Philo said the property will be a “turnkey” sale, i.e. all “dear, craftsman” Adirondack style furniture will remain. Philo said a lot of this furniture is “unique,” adding that one of the dining room tables in the house is one of two in the world – the other table belongs to Oprah, according to Philo.
Philo said the Riggis have four children and they brought their children home from Saratoga Springs for vacations and weekends. Philo said the Riggis built the toboggan run for their children. The Riggis first bought the house in 1980 for around $1 million, and the property had only one structure at the time.
Philo hopes the house will sell for the asking price.
“I think it’s very possible, and we’re hopeful,” she says, “and we’re certainly attracting the top echelon of the world to watch it.”
Philo said she had already received a few inquiries about the property on Friday – one from someone living in the US and one from someone in Dubai. She said Berkshire Hathaway has offices around the world and each BH agency has received registration information. She said she would not be doing house tours, noting that anyone who visits the house should be financially qualified with proof of funds. She said the property will sell for cash.
“Most people who buy a home like this have multiple homes, and it’s part of their portfolio,” she says.
North Elba Town assessor Todd Anthony said Friday that the sale of this property, if it sells for the asking price, is unlikely to impact homeowners’ daily land values in Lake Placid because the property is not really comparable to most properties in the city or town. He said it would be some kind of “aberrant” sale, and he said these types of sales do not affect property assessments unless a “critical mass” of them begin to enter.
“I don’t think most mere mortals have to worry about the selling price,” he said.
Philo thinks the Casa Del Paradiso list puts Lake Placid “in front of the world”. Media outlets including the Albany Times Union and the Wall Street Journal featured the list in their publications.
Philo added that she sells more than property – she sells a lifestyle. She said there’s something for everyone in Lake Placid, from winter sports to summer hiking to leaf viewing in the fall.
“I think it will appeal to someone looking for a lifestyle, not just a home,” she says.