King of Pop, Michael Jackson, transformed the face of pop music and popular culture. His Neverland ranch in California will soon be put on the market.
The property is currently managed by Colony Capital firm, which took over Neverland’s estimated $23 million debt from Jackson himself in late 2007. Thomas Barrack Jr of Colony Capital said: “We’ve really just been custodians of an irreplaceable estate and are proud to say we’ve restored it to the original elegance Michael first envisioned. We are now considering putting it up for sale.”
Neverland, named by Jackson after the island in J.M. Barrie’s story of Peter Pan, a boy who never grows up, featured a private amusement park and zoo on its grounds. Luxury property prices have been soaring recently in California and experts said Neverland could fetch up to $60 million. The 2,680-acre (1,085-hectare) property is in the Santa Ynez Valley, a region known for wineries where the 2004 film “Sideways” was set.
Jackson acquired the ranch from golf-course entrepreneur William Bone in 1988. Neverland has 22 buildings, including a mansion, guesthouses and several apartments. There’s also an amusement park with a roller coaster and Ferris wheel, a railroad, a movie theater, a deluxe French-style country home, two railroads and numerous water fountains. But with most of the amusement park rides dismantled and Jackson’s personal effects sold at auction years ago.
Officials with the Jackson estate issued a statement: “We hope and trust that any new owners of Neverland will respect the historical importance and special nature of this wonderful property. Michael’s memory lives on in the hearts of his fans worldwide.”