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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
*edit*instead of directing to the slide show, I figured it would be easier to just post everything here.

Is it a house or a mall?
Corona del Mar, Calif.
In 1996, software company founder Frank Pritt shelled out $13 million for three oceanfront lots on the rugged bluffs of Corona del Mar, a casual but expensive enclave in Southern California's Orange County. Pritt spent the next six years building Portabello, a sprawling, 22,000-square-foot contemporary mansion with an organically undulating roof line and a private mall. That’s right, a private mall. After failing to sell in 2006 when it was listed with a hefty asking price of $75 million, the eight-bedroom and 10-bathroom property was recently listed again, with a price tag of $49.6 million.


His own car museum
In addition to two saltwater swimming pools connected by a 200-foot spiral tunnel slide and an underground 15-car garage/car museum with a hydraulic lift, the custom mansion includes a kitschy, subterranean mall-like entertainment complex modeled after one in the owner’s hometown of Charleston, W.Va.


No rental shoes in this alley
A full-size, two-lane bowling alley has automatic ball return and pin setting, an electronic scoreboard, bowling shoes of every size and balls of every weight and color. A mirrored wall reflects a curving wall of floor-to-ceiling glass that opens into the lower level of the inner courtyard, where the swimming pools are located.


Movies on demand
Neon lights, movie posters and a marquee that reads "Rialto" mark the entrance to the Hollywood-style movie theater with stadium seating for 12 and a blue velvet, tasseled curtain.


A taste of home
Milkshakes and other '50s fare can be whipped up at the diner, named the Blossom Dairy Café. Pritt had the walls covered with murals that depict scenes from his hometown, including the house in which he grew up and the college he attended.
 

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Discussion Starter #2 (Edited)
Bridgehampton, N.Y.
During the past 10 or 15 years, newly constructed, unimaginably huge and amenity-laden mansions have popped up all over the Hamptons, the hoity-toity summertime playground of the rich and famous. One property fitted and kitted with a plethora of entertainment and sports options is Sandcastle, an 11.5-acre estate in Bridgehampton with a 26,500-square-foot house, listed at $49.5 million.


Sports and entertainment
At first glance, the 12-bedroom, 12-bathroom house looks like any of the other massive mansions in the Hamptons, right down to the state-of-the-art 10-seat movie theater with leather seating and the 60-foot swimming pool equipped with an underwater stereo system.

But the lower level is home to a full-size two-lane bowling alley — and that's only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the home's sports and entertainment options.


Entertainment and exercise
In addition to the home gym and indoor squash/racquetball court, the lower level includes a lounge area with five wall-mounted plasma televisions, a full bar and disco, a rock-climbing wall and a virtual golf room. There's even an indoor half-pipe for daredevil skateboarders and in-line skaters.


A place to relax
When the homeowner and guests tire of the entertainment and exercise options at Sandcastle, they can head to the home's spa, which includes a relaxing massage area with fireplace, a Jacuzzi, a steam room and a sauna.

Sandcastle, offered as a posh short-term rental this summer, was leased for five weeks to a Tampa, Fla.-based millionaire at a reported rate of $250,000 per week. That’s a lot of money, even by billionaire standards, but it's still just a fraction of the purchase and maintenance costs of the fantasy estate.
 

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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
Atlanta
Although once priced at $45 million, the La Reve estate outside of Atlanta fell into foreclosure and is now listed for sale, fully furnished, with a much lower asking price of $21 million.

The roughly 70-acre estate has a 47,000-square-foot main house that spreads out over four floors and includes 82 rooms, 62 televisions, seven bedrooms, nine full bathrooms and 11 half-bathrooms, 10 fireplaces and a 12-car heated and cooled garage.


Trains, games and stadium seating
The palatial pile was completed in 2007, built by train-conductor-turned-mortgage-mogul Hubert Humphrey. Not only did Humphrey install an elaborate model train room, but he also outfitted the home with a billiards room, an arcade, a massage room and a private cinema complex.

The cinema's attractions include a ticket-taker booth, lighted movie-poster display cases and a candy counter. The theater itself has pink and gold insets and stadium seating for 27.


Retro in-house eatery
A popular feature of mansions with private sports and entertainment complexes is a retro-style diner. La Reve's in-house eatery includes classic 1950s diner elements such as neon signs, black-and-white checkerboard floors and a soda fountain, as well as more modern amenities such as flat-screen televisions.


Room to play
Fitness and exercise facilities include a massive gym with checkerboard floor and a massage room. The extensive grounds include a 4.5-acre private lake, a swimming pool and pool house, a spa, stables and horse riding trails, a children's playground, an amphitheater, a grass tennis court and a nine-hole golf course.

If the weather is not cooperating, try the two-lane bowling alley and the indoor golf simulator, which enables virtual play on world-class golf courses around the world.
 
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