LOCATION: Venice, Italy
SIZE: (approx.) 7,500 square feet
YOUR MAMA’S NOTES: The Palazzo Dona Sangiantoffetti, a 17th-century palazzo along Venice’s bustling Grand Canal that’s been widely reported over the last half of a dozen years or so to be owned by American actor Johnny Depp, has come available with an asking price of €10.8 million, an amount our handy-dandy currency conversion contraption shows equal to US$11,962,100 at today’s rates. So the celebrity real estate rumor mill went Mister Depp became smitten with the historic palazzo back in 2010 while in the slowly sinking, tourist-thronged city filming “The Tourist” with Angelina Jolie. Reports from the time prattled on about how the once reliably bankable veteran movie star, who has over the last few years had a growing string of spectacular cinematic flops, shelled out somewhere in the neighborhood of €8.58 million for the palazzo, about US$12 million at that time, after a bidding war with an unidentified Arab prince. Alas, the New York Times recently revealed the palazzo is not, in fact, owned by Mister Depp but rather by a consortium of investors who acquired the property in 2008 and “insist that the real estate transaction [with Mister Depp] was never actually completed.”
The approximately 7,500-square-foot palazzo, austerely unadorned and positively petite compared to the huge and elaborately detailed neighboring palazzos, was built in the 1600s by the wealthy Toffetti family and later housed a fabric factory, bathhouse and college before it fell into a state of neglect and disrepair. The current owners restored the building and made improvements to electrical, plumbing and heating systems but otherwise left it a blank slate for the next owners to customize to their own needs and whims at their own expense. Listing details show the four-story structure could comfortably accommodate seven bedrooms and nine bathrooms, numerous receptions rooms and lounges, a gym, and a screening room.
Though he may not be the owner/seller of the Palazzo Dona Sangiantoffetti, it’s not too far-fetched notion Mister Depp might buy a Venetian palazzo as he presides over a prodigious portfolio of luxury residential properties around the world. In Los Angeles he’s long owned a lushly landscaped 2.64-acre estate just above the Sunset Strip — bought in the fall of 1995 for $1.89 million — as well as at least four of the surrounding homes scooped up between September 2005 and October 2008 for a total outlay of $10,070,000. Our research shows he also owns five penthouse condos at the Eastern Columbia building in downtown Los Angeles. Mister Depp’s international holdings include Little Hall’s Pond Cay, a 45-acre private island in the Bahamas he bought in 2004 for about $3.6 million, where just last year he married his soon-to-be second ex-wife Amber Heard with whom he’s currently involved in a contentious divorce complete with scandalous allegations of domestic abuse. And, since sometime around 2000, the “Pirates of the Caribbean” franchise star has additionally owned a sprawling rural estate in Plan-de-la-Tour, about 17 miles outside of Saint-Tropez in the South of France, that he put up for sale over the summer of 2015 at roughly US$26 million. The 37-acre, village-like spread, which includes an approximately 4,300-square-foot main residence, a church converted to a guesthouse plus several more guest cottages, a bistro with professional kitchen, two swimming pools and a skateboard park, was taken off the market a few months later but, according to The Wall Street Journal, the idiosyncratic estate will be re-listed tout-de-suite with a new and shockingly higher asking price of €50 million, about US$55 million.
Listing photos: Venice Real Estate