The Playboy Mansion is up for sale, but there’s a catch

The famous property is listed for $200 million, but it comes with a housemate, and not the one you want.

Peter Iantorno January 17, 2016

The Playboy Mansion is up for sale. For a snip at $200 million, the lucky buyer will get 29 rooms, a tennis court, swimming pool, guest house, movie theatre and even a grotto, where Playboy magazine founder Hugh Hefner used to throw his infamously hedonistic parties.

There’s just one catch, though; according to the terms of the sale, 89-year-old Hef has the right to live on the property until he dies.

“The Playboy Mansion has been a creative centre for Hef as his residence and workplace for the past 40 years, as it will continue to be if the property is sold,” said Playboy Enterprises’ CEO, Scott Flanders, in a statement.

Aside from the unwanted silk pajama-clad housemate, it seems that the famous mansion may come with a few other undesirable features that make the $200 million asking price seem slightly on the steep side.

Playboy Mansion.jpg (1) The $200 million property has 29 rooms, a tennis court, swimming pool, guest house and a movie theatre.

According to one of Hefner’s former girlfriends, Izabella St. James, the reality of the property is a long way from the common perception of Hollywood glitz and glamour.

“Although we did our best to decorate our rooms and make them homey, the mattresses on our beds were disgusting – old, worn and stained,” she wrote in her book Bunny Tales. “The sheets were past their best too.”

Then there's the constant association with sordid stories of sexual deviancy and even abuse, as the property was mentioned several times as women came forward to accuse Bill Cosby of sexual assault.

Izabella St James.jpg Former bunny Izabella St. James criticised the state of the mansion in her book, Bunny Tales.

The surprise listing comes as Playboy Enterprises struggles to come to terms with a rapidly changing market in which a magazine featuring full-frontal nudity finds itself largely irrelevant. Such are the changes, in fact, that back in October 2015 Playboy changed its policy and stopped printing photos of completely nude women.

After witnessing such phenomenal success, the business empire is now in a slump, and the anticipated $200 million windfall would bring much-needed revenue to the company.

However, with the property’s sordid past, questions raised over its condition and the small matter of having to deal with Hefner as a housemate, we’d be inclined to think that there are a fair few better ways to spend $200 million.