BY E.B. SOLOMONT
Sept. 3, 2021
Clinging to a hillside on the Caribbean island of St. Barthélemy, a large home with two theaters and a nightclub is coming on the market for $80 million.
If it sells for close to that amount, it will be one of the priciest deals ever recorded on the island, said listing agent Shawn Elliott of Nest Seekers International.
A well-known vacation spot for the rich and famous, St. Barts has experienced a string of high-price deals over the years. In 2009, Russian billionaire Roman Abramovich paid nearly $90 million for a 70-acre estate, The Wall Street Journal reported. In 2017, retired hedge-fund manager Bruce Kovner sold his estate Girasol for close to $67 million.
The seller of the $80 million property is Scottish businessman Doug Barrowman, founder and chairman of the Knox Group of Companies, a group of businesses that offer wealth planning and asset management services, according to Anthony Page, director of the Knox Private Office. He said the property is owned by the Barrowman Private Family Office.
Mr. Barrowman built the house in 2018 and is looking to sell because he “seldom” stays there, Mr. Page said in an email, noting that Mr. Barrowman prefers to stay on board his private yacht. Mr. Barrowman is married to Baroness Michelle Mone, a businesswoman and member of U.K.’s House of Lords.
Known as Villa Neo, the roughly 17,000-square-foot, six-bedroom house is one of the largest homes in the Caribbean vacation spot, Mr. Elliott said. “They changed the building restrictions on the island of St. Barts, you can’t build north of 12,000 square feet anymore,” he said. The location, views and size contribute to the property’s value, he added. He said that in recent years, the owners have rented out the villa for as much as $4 million annually.
Located above St. Jean, a neighborhood on the northern part of the island best known for its beaches and ocean views, the home sits on roughly an acre and is built into the hillside because of the area’s steep topography. From a motor court, the main entrance is down a flight of stairs that is flanked by stone walls and cascading waterfalls.
The main living area has 22-foot ceilings, floor-to-ceiling windows that disappear into the walls and a landscaped, interior courtyard. From the main kitchen, glass pocket doors open up to the pool deck, which has a nearly 95-foot-long infinity-edge pool, Jacuzzi and swim-up bar. There is also a loggia with a drop-down projector and screen. The roughly 600-square-foot nightclub doubles as the home’s second theater. The bedrooms all have terraces, and each has a television that rises up from the floor so as not to block the views.
According to Mr. Elliott, Villa Neo also has a designated service wing with its own entrance, a laundry room, staff bedrooms and a catering kitchen with an access window to the main kitchen.
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