Everyone loves to see how the obscenely rich live – it’s human nature to be interested. Fortunately (or unfortunately) cable television has numerous shows that celebrate the lives of these people, the most frustrating of which is surely Teen Cribs. Flicking through the Foxtel guide this evening I came across an episode of Teen Cribs that I couldn’t turn off, a 15 and 18 year old walking through the most palatial Georgian mansion I’ve ever seen, that was after the 15 year old showed off his murdered out C63 AMG he was given for his last birthday (naturally).
The thing that interests me the most about shows like this is ‘what does this person do who owns this house?’. I took to Google almost instantly and found out that the home belonged to an Atlanta property tycoon Lee Najjar but I couldn’t find out much about his business, only about his minor appearance on Real House Wives of Atlanta. I finally stumbled on an article written at the end of November 2011 and found out that Lee who appeared to be outrageously wealthy is now ‘struggling’ and has since sold his 24,000 square foot Buckhead mansion after the foreclosure of a number of his major assets including a series of shopping malls and defaults on $45 million worth of bank loans. Najjar made all his money in the 90’s when he adopted an aggressive strategy of loaning money to buy up old shopping centres and commercial lots as well as land in Florida and luxury homes in Atlanta and LA. Unfortunately for Najjar when the economy tanked so did his net worth.
Despite all this it was the house that caught my eye and the reason I researched this reality bitten business man. If you think you recognise it and you’ve seen Zombieland you’ll notice that it was in fact Bill Murray’s home in the film. I’m not going to pretend it’s not a little over the top but the ‘Gentlemen’s Bar’ is a treat, as is the Moroccan lounge, and the barber shop and the recording studio. Here’s a few shots of the house and an idea of what $20 million will buy you in the USA.