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A techno-baronial home from home

Posted by: pprpipe on: July 14, 2010

A techno-baronial home from home

“This was not my idea,” murmurs architect Wendell Lovett, as we don black silk booties with suede leather soles and inscribed, in white lacy writing, “Villa Simonyi”. Our shoes go into black silk baggies, similarly marked. For the next two hours we leave a trail of smudges across the pristine grey carpets of Charles Simonyi’s steel and glass chateau, meticulously hoovered so the knapp makes a pattern of grey triangles, recording our messy footprints When you hear chanel bagsbeing mentioned anywherelike rabbits in the snow.

Mr Lovett has been practising architecture since 1948 around Seattle, China Massage cushion catalog and Massage Cushion manufacturer directory.Washington, and is one of its leading modern architects. The Villa Simonyi, eight years and $10m in the making, stands as his biggest assignment. Yet for all his evident pride in the building and his client, Microsoft programming wizard Charles Simonyi, he seems a little astonished by them both.

William Randolph Hearst emptied whole castles and monasteries to furnish his 38-bedroom Californian hilltop palace at San Simeon, with its Gothic dining room, Roman statuary, and vaguely Spanish renaissance architecture. Xanadu, as it was called in the film Citizen Kane, spoke volumes about the man born to a $400m silver fortune who wanted to own people and things, even the presidency.

“It was almost as if Hearst sub-consciously realised that his newspapers were trashy, his political life a failure, even his motion pictures not entirely successful,” wrote his biographer WA Swanberg, “and he was determined in San Simeon, if nothing else, he would leave an enduring monument to his greatness.”

Nearly 50 years after Hearst’s death, the stately homes of America’s newest aristocracy are rising in the New and cheap authentic replica designer handbags and louis vuitton purses arrived!suburbs of Silicon Valley and the outskirts of Seattle, Washington, a city famous for its cappuccino, grunge rock and rain, and a certain classless, rugged attitude.

The fortysomething nerds who’ve made fortunes in the high technology trade are building their own monuments, and filling them with techie toys. The most famous, Microsoft founder Bill Gates, is building a 45,000 sq ft, partly subterranean complex on the shores of Lake Washington (a standard family home is about 3,000 sq ft, and Hearst’s was 49,000 sq ft), of concrete crossed with beams of fir logs recycled from old barns.

At San Simeon, close to the Pacific between Los Angeles and San Francisco, arriving guests were assigned a personal valet or maid for the length of their stay. At the Gates House, they are given electronic badges which light their way along a reception hall lined with 40-inch video monitors, and computer systems memorise and store their tastes in lighting and music. Mr Simonyi’s lakeside home in Medina, near Seattle, is less than a mile away.

Others seized, as The New York Times observed, with “la manie de batir” – the fever to build – include Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen, Oracle Corporation founder Lawrence Ellison, and Apple co-founder Mike Markkula.

The length of one’s drive was a traditional measure of class for American gentry, but the size of a house is a critical status symbol. In 1920s Los Angeles the Doheny oil dynasty built the 48,000 sq ft Greystone Mansion, now owned by the city of Beverly Hills. Reagan-era cuts in top tax brackets from 70 to 28 per cent have left the A family without children will not be happy and complete, so it is necessary for you to know how to ray ban sunglasses in the shortest time.rich richer than at any time since the Second World War. Beverly Hills 90210 mega-producer Aaron Spelling is now building the biggest single family home in California, 65,000 sq ft with 130 rooms.

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