Davide Campari’s Estate in Saint-Jean-Cap-Ferrat (Listed for $410 Million)

This is a look at the back of the house from the vantage of the large garden with tropical trees and grass lawns. These make the beige exteriors of the house stand out. Image courtesy of

Davide Campari's estate Villa Les Cedres in Saint-Jean-Cap-Ferrat in the South of France now on the market, $410 million selling price, 14 bedrooms, 18000 sq ft, 35 acres, world's most expensive residence, built in 1830, water views of Mediterranean Sea, peninsula and bay of Villefranche-sur-Mer, art and furnishings available

Campari, a remarkably lucrative Italian beverage company which began in 1860, started when the son of a humble farmer grew interested in mixing and then creating his own liqueurs and cordials, eventually founding his brand on a boldly-colored, boldly-flavored bitter spirit with hints of orange.

Particularly in the latter half of the twentieth century, Campari saw prodigious growth, amassing 50 other beverage brands under its crest including SKYY Vodka, and in 2016 perhaps descendant Davide Campari saw fit to honor the origins of Campari’s signature aperitif by purchasing a breathtaking 35-acre estate in the South of France nestled within groves of bitter oranges.

Campari has put the 14-bedroom, 18,000-square-foot manor back on the market for $410 million, which would make it the most expensive residential sale in history.

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Take a look inside a peerless estate whose interiors were obviously inspired by crystalline visions of royal finery, while in its design and with so many of the priceless possessions inside celebrates the land and the humble joys of gardening.

Plant cultivation, getting one’s hands dirty planting seeds and plucking sun-ripened olives and bitter oranges–these were the pursuits of many of the owners of this villa situated high on the coast of the azure-blue Mediterranean in Saint-Jean-Cap-Ferrat in the South of France.

Built in 1830, this historic landmark was owned in the past by the mayor of Villefranche-sur-Mer who bought it in 1850 and used it as an olive tree farm, by the King of Belgium Leopold II in 1904, and in 1924 by the Marnier-Lapostolle family who minted Grand Marnier using the bitter oranges grown there until their company was bought by Davide Campari in 2016.  The past proprietors contributed to the lush and productive gardens, resulting in the thriving groves of citrus and olive trees, resplendent tropical flowers, and 25 towering greenhouses in all.

Down a winding private path shaded by palm trees and the statuesque cedars that give the estate its name, the palatial front facade comes into view, boasting split stairways leading up to the immense balcony first-floor porch.  The second story has a porch as well, both extending the substantial length of the home.

The vantage point from the railing-enclosed rooftop offers water views of the fabled South of France, from the seaside village and harbor within the protected bay of Villefranche-sur-Mer and the charming and functional lighthouse to the Alps separating France and Italy providing a background to inspire any artist.

Inside, even the library is dedicated to celebrating the bounty of the land, housing over 3,000 volumes on botany and nature within its decorative wood-paneled walls as well as paintings, sculptures, and a grand piano.  France’s Belle Epoque era informed the home’s decor, echoing Renaissance themes of optimism and inspiration with flourishing cultural and artistic developments.

A series of arched French doors line the living room which features printed gold silk wall covering, soaring coffered ceilings with matching white molding, and fireplaces of marble, wood, and stone, one almost 12 feet tall.  The primary bedroom is decorated in soft blue with white ceiling and molding, recessed lighting, and an atmospheric floor-to-ceiling painting that takes up most of one wall.

The bed, a period piece in itself, is made of wood with a tented canopy above draped in generous folds of yards and yards of white fabric.  Fortunately, all furnishings and decor are available for purchase with the home.

Photo Credit: Ambroise Tezenas for Bloomberg Businessweek


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