If you're looking for a little overseas pad to jet off to on the weekends, Dracula's Castle has gone up for sale this week. It's estimated to fetch upwards of $135 million dollars.
The Bran Castle, perched on a cliff near Brasov in mountainous central Romania, is a top tourist attraction because of its ties to Prince Vlad the Impaler, the warlord whose cruelty inspired Bram Stoker's 1897 novel, "Dracula."
Originally built in the 14th century to serve as a fortress to protect against the invading Ottoman Turks. The royal family moved into the castle in the 1920s, living there until the communist regime confiscated it from Princess Ileana in 1948. When the communist rule ended in Romania in the 1980's the castle was restored and has been a popular tourist attraction ever since.
In May 2006, the castle was returned to Princess Ileana's son, Archduke Dominic Habsburg, a New York Architect. Under the current contract Romania pays Habsburg a rental fee to continue to operate the museum. Habsburg's contract with the government expires in 2009 and according to the company representing him, "he put the castle up for sale "to the right purchaser under the right circumstances," said Michael Gardner, chief executive of Baytree Capital, the company representing Habsburg. "The Habsburgs are not in the business of managing a museum."
Interesting enough Habsburg offered to sell it to the Romanian government last year for 80 million dollars but was turned down, yet in the current contract "The government has priority as a buyer if it can match the best offer for the castle" his representative said.
Our bets are on Marilyn Manson as a taker...anyone else?