THE Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia Mohammed Bin Salman is on the verge of buying Newcastle United after having a £300million bid accepted by owner Mike Ashley.
Incredibly though, that’s only £70m more than he paid for the world’s most expensive house.
Back in 2015, the billionaire, who failed in a bid to buy Manchester United, splashed £230m on this stunning 50,000 sq ft French chateau.
Chateau Louis XIV is modelled on 17th-century French castles, but was built between 2008-11 in Louveciennes, near Versailles.
Before the 34-year-old prince bought the palace, Kim Kardashian once considered it as a venue for her wedding to Kanye West.
Join SunSport in marvelling at Bin Salman’s luxury abode – that features an astonishing aquarium.
KEEPING IT QUIET
When Bin Salman purchased the Chateau Louis XIV – he didn’t want anyone to know about it.
He carefully concealed his ownership by using shell companies in France and Luxembourg.
But after further investigation it turned out those companies are under the Eight Investment Company umbrella – a Saudi firm that’s managed by the head of prince’s personal foundation.
Emad Khashoggi, the nephew of billionaire arms dealer Adnan Khashoggi, developed the property – bulldozing the original 19th century castle and rebuilding it with 21st century amenities. In fact, it’s so hi-tech – fountains, sound systems, the lights, and air conditioning are all controlled by iPhone.
The most incredible feature of Chateau Louis XIV is its meditation room, or chilling room inside the castle’s moat.
It features a transparent underwater chamber, something you might see in a James bond film, that has sturgeon and koi swimming around.
Other lavish features include a statue of Louis XIV made of expensive Carrara marble overlooking the 57-acre grounds.
In terms of comfort, there are 10 bedroom suites, a huge reception room with a 52ft-high painted dome ceiling, a library, as well as a wine cellar that can store up to 3,000 bottles – enough to toast success with Newcastle.
It also has indoor and outdoor pools, a private cinema, a squash court, two ballrooms, and a nightclub.
HEY BIG SPENDER
In 2015, Bin Salman threatened to go over his limit on his American Express Centurion Card.
He spent £452m on a 440 ft super-yacht – bought from a Russian tycoon after being wowed by it while on holiday France.
Feeling that it looked a bit bare and needed some decorating, he then acquired Leonardo Da Vinci’s £350m Salvator Mundi masterpiece and is believed to have installed the painting on the mega boat.
However, it is the Chateau Louis XIV that required the most fuss.
Town officials who worked with designer Khashoggi revealed it became an obsession – likening construction to the building of the Palace of the Versailles.
“Khashoggi said it was the dream of his life to make a thing like that,” former Louveciennes deputy mayor Marianne Merlino told the NY Times.
“Like in Versailles, that was way over the top too, and like Louis XIV, he achieved something really quite incredible.”
And judging by these pictures, you can’t argue with that.