Celebrity Mansions That Were Abandoned

By molly atherton 8 months ago
In the realm of fame and fortune, where opulence knows no bounds, the grandeur of celebrity mansions often stands as a testament to success and excess. Yet, hidden behind the glittering façade of fame lies a mysterious world of abandoned opulence. From Hollywood stars to music icons, the stories of once-luxurious abodes left to decay are highly intriguing. These sprawling estates, once filled with the echo of glamorous parties, now bear witness to the passage of time and changing fortunes.

1. Mohamed Hadid's Mega Mansion

The father of supermodels Gigi and Bella is a multimillionaire real estate developer - so you'd think someone actually in the business would build a mansion to last. But this project took a turn for the worse; the mansion, based in Bel Air, Los Angeles, started off with a legal battle, to end up being eventually demolished.Original content sourced from Femanin.comImage Source / PeopleDespite Mohamed Hadid's initial efforts to salvage the project and resolve the legal issues, the mansion's fate seemed sealed. The structure that was meant to stand as a testament to the Hadid family's success was reduced to rubble, leaving behind the dreams of a grand vision turned nightmare.

2. Courtney Love's Country Retreat

Courtney Love, the music and film star, and ex of Kurt Cobain, had a generous country retreat in Washington state, once upon a time. The retreat, on seven acres of land, had been abandoned and left to rot. Love eventually sold the abandoned home and took a loss due to the neglect.Image Source / LoudwireThe secluded and once loved estate was meant to be a haven away from the public eye, a place where Love could find refuge and peace. However, as time unfolded, the retreat transformed from a sanctuary into a haunting symbol of neglect and abandonment.

3. Steve Jobs' California Mansion

The Apple co-founder bought his Californian mansion back in 1984, and at first he loved it - until he didn't. He eventually moved out in 1994, leaving the mansion empty and abandoned, while Jobs worked to get it demolished. The 35-room mansion then began to crumble and decay.Image Source / SFGATE
Jobs' departure marked the beginning of a peculiar chapter in the mansion's history. Rather than maintaining or selling the property, Jobs embarked on a mission to have it demolished. The reasons behind this decision remain a subject of some speculation.

11. P. Diddy's Abandoned Mansion: Mystery Location

P. Diddy's mystery, abandoned mansion has been the source of urban explorers and viral videos, with a bit of mystery attached to it. Nobody seems to know where the mansion is, and videos posted about it started debate about where it could be located.Image Source / InsiderOne Reddit user suggested the mansion, which was bought by the rapper in 2003 and later sold and abandoned, could be in Georgia. However, as fate would have it, the property eventually changed hands, falling into complete abandonment and sheer obscurity.

12. Bruce Lee's Abandoned Home In Hong Kong

After martial arts legend Bruce Lee died in 1973, his Hong Kong home quickly went up for sale. It was bought, converted and then planned to sell, but fans of Lee asked for the place to be preserved in memory of Bruce Lee. The owner of the house later died and the house was left empty.
Image Source / InsiderFollowing Bruce Lee's passing, his Hong Kong home was swiftly put up for sale. The property changed hands, and the new owner had plans to convert it for commercial purposes, potentially selling it for redevelopment, The reality of the property ended in demolition.

13. Aleister Crowley's Mansion

The mansion that once belonged to famous occultist Aleister Crowley, located in Scotland, was later bought by Jimmy Page, the guitarist of rock band Led Zeppelin. The area the mansion is located already had lots of spooky tales and incidents from its history.Image Source / The TimesAfter Page took over the mansion, reports of paranormal activity soon surfaced. The mansion later suffered not one, but two fires, and was left in ruin. The first blaze, in 2015, significantly damaged the structure, and the second, in 2019, left the mansion in a state of ruin.

14. Pablo Escobar's Abandoned Naples Estate

The abandoned property of Pablo Escobar is probably one of the most famous estates in the world, complete with roads, swimming pools and an airstrip. After his death, the estate was abandoned and left to rot, eventually confiscated by the government in Colombia.Image Source / GetYourGuideFollowing Escobar's death in 1993, his once-grand estate was left to rot and decay. Abandoned and shunned, the property became a ghostly reminder of the criminal empire that had once dominated the Colombian landscape. Today, the abandoned property serves as a stark contrast to its former glory.

15. Michael Jordan's Chicago Compound

Basketball legend Michael Jordan spent a lot of his hard-earned net worth on a huge mansion compound in the Chicago area. The mansion includes personalised Jordan logos, including the home's full size basketball court. The problem was that, when it came to sell, the mansion was both too expensive.Image Source / Jacaranda FMIt was also too much labelled with Michael Jordan logos everywhere! That's a very specific taste in decor, after all. Jordan's distinctive taste in decor and the hefty price tag proved to be obstacles that led to the mansion being abandoned and unsold.

16. Evander Holyfield's Palace In Georgia

Former professional boxer Evander Holyfield faced a little bit of money trouble in his life, and one of the biggest problems for his finances was his mansion in Georgia. When he couldn't afford the ridiculous upkeep of the huge house, it was put on auction where it was snapped up by a buyer.Image Source / Bleacher ReportUltimately, the mansion was forced into auction, where it found a new owner willing to take on the grandeur that once belonged to a boxing champion. Evander Holyfield's Georgia mansion was more than just a home—it was a testament to the boxer's achievements and financial zenith.

17. Burt Reynolds' 'Valhalla' Florida Ranch

Acting legend Burt Reynolds had a huge ranch in Florida that was known as 'Valhalla', which included a farm, a horse track and even a chapel that the star got married in. Unfortunately, Reynolds got into money trouble and couldn't afford to keep the ranch.Image Source / American LuxuryUltimately, the fate of Valhalla took a final turn when it was bulldozed, erasing not only the physical structures but the echoes of Burt Reynolds' past. The once-grand ranch became a poignant symbol of the challenges that even Hollywood legends may face in the later chapters of their lives.

18. Toni Braxton's Mansion In Atlanta

Singer Toni Braxton of iconic 'Unbreak My Heart' fame ended up using her cash to buy a mansion in Atlanta, which boasted 16 luxury rooms. She eventually went on to file bankruptcy, and the mansion had to be abandoned and put on the market to be sold.Image Source / Baltimore SunIt wasn't actually the last mansion Braxton would buy (or leave). She went on to buy another before leaving that one, too. Braxton's real estate journey became a reflection of her successes, bankruptcy, and the unpredictable nature of the entertainment industry.

19. Katy Perry's Hollywood Hills Home

Singer Katy Perry was enjoying her lavish Hollywood Hills home purchase before her separation from Russell Brand, forcing her to leave the home and put it on the market. She had to cut a lot of money off the price tag to get it to sell, but she eventually got on track by - you know - marrying Orlando Bloom.Image Source / Daily MailThe glamorous abode witnessed the highs of Perry's success and love, but it also became a casualty of personal changes when her marriage to Russell Brand faced a separation. But, As the Hollywood Hills home changed ownership, Perry and Bloom created a new nest.

20. Reese Witherspoon's California Homes

After actress Reese Witherspoon purchased a Spanish colonial mansion in California, she soon became tired of it and decided to put it on the market. Unfortunately, people weren't moving to quickly snap up the property and she ended up losing a lot of money on it.Image Source / Daily MailDespite the opulence of the mansion, the real estate market had different plans. The property lingered on the market longer than anticipated, and Witherspoon found herself facing the reality of a financial setback as the opulent mansion's value took a hit.

21. Ryan Phillippe's Sunset Strip Home

Speaking of Reese Witherspoon - her ex, Ryan Phillippe, also had his own experience with expensive abandoned property. After buying his own home in LA, he then later decided to sell, but - despite its many amazing features - wasn't really getting any interest on the property market.Image Source / JustLuxeDespite the many remarkable attributes of the home, potential buyers weren't flocking to secure the property, leaving Phillippe in a quandary. The disconnect between the perceived value of the home and its reception in the property market became a perplexing chapter in the actor's real estate journey.

22. Christina Aguilera's L.A. Real Estate

Pop singing legend and The Voice judge Christina Aguilera spent her $millions net worth on real estate investment in Beverly Hills. But when she chose to pack up and leave, she also took a big loss on the price tag when she went to sell. The mansion was bedecked in a lot of pink, though, so maybe some pink-haters couldn't see past that.Image Source / Daily MailThe mansion's vibrant personality, coupled with the complexities of the market, served as a reminder that even the most glamorous homes may require a delicate balance between personal expression and market appeal. The market property can be very fickle at times.

23. Harry Styles' Hollywood Hills Abode

Following his obvious success as a solo artist, previous One Direction star Harry Styles decided to dip his toe in the real estate market in the Hollywood Hills. He then decided to flip it, but apparently ran into some trouble getting the amount he wanted for it.Image Source / ForbesBecause apparently not too many people cared that Harry Styles himself had lived there. . Styles, however, reportedly faced hurdles in realizing the intended financial return on his investment. There are several complexities of the real estate market to consider.

24. Shaquille O'Neal Huge Florida Mansion

Legendary basketball star Shaquille O'Neal bought a pretty darn huge mansion in Florida, complete with 12 bedrooms, over 11 bathrooms and a hefty price tag. But he soon tired of the huge house and left it, putting it on the market and then even dropping the price so that it could sell. In 2021, it finally sold.Image Source / Los Angeles TimesDespite the initial allure, O'Neal's desire for a change prompted the decision to leave the mansion, putting it on the market for prospective buyers. The challenge, however, lay in finding the right match between the property's features and a buyer willing to meet the asking price.

25. Miley Cyrus And Liam Hemsworth's Malibu Tragedy

Miley Cyrus and Liam Hemsworth - when still married - had to abandon their home for a more tragic reason. The pair's Malibu set up, which included two homes the pair had, became victim to one of California's wildfires. The pair later had to sell what was left of their burned homes.Image Source / Metro UKThe couple's idyllic setup, comprised of two homes close together, fell victim to the destructive path of one of California's wildfires. Subsequently, Cyrus and Hemsworth had to make the painful decision to sell what remained of their scorched properties.

26. Nicolas Cage's Castles

Not content with your traditional Hollywood mansion, actor Nicholas Cage decided to invest in a variety of expensive homes which he abandoned. He once had 15 homes, including two medieval mansions and a castle in Germany. But Cage quickly abandoned any new homes he bought to move on to the next wacky purchase.Image Source / CBS NewsThe actor's penchant for acquiring homes, however, was matched by his equally swift decisions to abandon them. Whether driven by a desire for a change of scenery, a new project, or simply a whim, Cage's real estate odyssey unfolded with a rhythm that kept the public guessing.

27. Billy Joel's Beach House

Legendary singer Billy Joel did what any self-respecting celeb would do when they're rolling in it: he bought a beach home! But after later deciding he didn't want it, he left the home to put it on the market, but (surprisingly, due to those great views) had trouble selling it.Image Source / TopTenRealEstateDeals.comDespite the property's prime location and the allure of its enviable views, the home encountered challenges in finding the right buyer willing to strike a deal. The troubadour of hits found himself facing a different kind of challenge in the real estate market.

28. Celine Dion's Florida Home, Complete With Water Features

And we don't just mean a pretty fountain in the garden - the talented singer actually had a water slide, a river and two pools in her Florida mansion! It also came with beach views, so you could get a glimpse of some more water, if that wasn't enough already.Image Source / Town & Country MagazineThe extravagant estate, embellished with breathtaking beach views, offered a symphony of water features that redefined the meaning of luxurious living. But apparently it wasn't the place for her as she later moved out and put it up for sale. The pièce de résistance was, of course, the scenic beach views.

29. Jennifer Lopez's Mansion

Jennifer Lopez actually has more to her than singing, dancing and acting - turns out she's quite the whizz with real estate. Which makes it all the more surprising that she struggled to sell her Hidden Hills mansion after deciding she wanted out of it.Image Source / Architectural DigestIt took a while, but she eventually managed to sell for many millions in 2017. Despite her well-established reputation as a real estate aficionado, Lopez faced challenges in finding the right buyer willing to meet the property's substantial value.

30. Keith Richards' Luxury Apartment

Legendary Rolling Stones star Keith Richards had a rather nice luxury apartment in Greenwich Village, which was as big as a mansion inside to say the least. He decided he didn't want it, though, and put it on the market - where it spent two years waiting to be sold.Image Source / Town & Country MagazineEventually, the penthouse did find a new owner - but it took time a long time to do so. The two-year intermission concluded, and the luxurious abode seamlessly transitioned into the hands of a buyer eager to embrace the legacy of Keith Richards' urban retreat.

31. These other abandoned mansions with creepy pasts: Elda Castle, USA

This now abandoned castle includes an eye-watering 50 acres of land, both of which were once occupied by a family that then saw a great deal of tragedy. The daughter of the family died in an accident, before the father himself died from a fever in the castle.
image source: secrethike.com
The remaining members of the grieving family moved and the castle was left empty, now decaying and left in ruin. Following these heart-wrenching events, the surviving members of the family chose to sever their ties with the castle, seeking solace elsewhere.

32. Lynnewood Hall, USA

It gives off White House vibes, doesn't it? This huge mansion once housed the most important private European art collection in the whole country of the US. The mansion passed hands down the family line until the last member of the family died, and with no surviving members left.
image source: en.wikipedia.org
With no surviving heirs of the family to inherit the legacy and such a dark past, the mansion, along with its unparalleled art collection, found itself in the hands of a property developer. Sadly, nobody could afford the mortgage, and it was abandoned.

33. Lennox Castle, Scotland

This abandoned castle in Scotland was once the home of a very important Scottish family, built back in the 1800s. But it didn't stay a home forever, when it was eventually made into a mental asylum instead. It also served as a hospital during the Second World War.
image source: en.wikipedia.org
The castle's stone walls bore witness to the wounds of war, a stark contrast to the aristocratic gatherings of the past. As you can imagine, that makes this now-abandoned castle a pretty eerie place to be - and you can definitely imagine a ghost or two!

34. Ashlar Hall, USA

Ashlar Hall was originally built as a family home in Memphis, Tennessee, until eventually the family turned the huge house into a restaurant and place of business instead. But despite success on its initial opening, later the Hall was purchased from the family - as well as the surrounding area - and the investors left the house to rot.
image source: en.wikipedia.org
Ashlar Hall would later find itself caught in the crossroads of neglect as investors shifted their focus to the surrounding land. Yet, the echoes of success that once graced its halls would eventually fade, leaving Ashlar Hall abandoned and succumbing to the relentless march of neglect.

35. Lui Family Mansion, Taiwan

Also creepily named the Minxiong Ghost House, this mansion has a tragic history - but nobody knows quite what the truth is. It was originally occupied by a family who mysteriously fled the home, leaving it empty. There are many tales as to why they left abruptly...
image source: kathmanduandbeyond.com
One of these included a story of a maid who committed suicide; years later, it was taken over by members of the Kuomintang of China, who were also said to have committed suicide there. Rumors and speak of suicides permeate the very essence of the mansion.

36. Bannerman's Castle, USA

Found on the Hudson River in New York, this eerie abandoned castle sits on an island which was bought back during the time of the Civil War so that it could used for military means. The wealthy man who bought it also had a separate home that was situated nearby.
image source: roadtrippers.com
He also built a separate residence nearby. However, the untimely demise of this wealthy benefactor marked a turning point in the castle's fate. Later, storms meant people couldn't cross to the island, and eventually the house remained empty and then fell victim to fire damage.

37. Ha Ha Tonka Mansion, USA

There's nothing funny about this creepy abandoned mansion! Located in Missouri in the Ozarks, it was the dream project of a wealthy man who then tragically died in an accident. His sons carried on construction, but both sons eventually left after it was completed.
image source: martincitytelegraph.com
And so then, it changed from a home into a hotel. A fire soon brought an end to its business, and it was left only as remains. Today, the mansion's skeletal remains silently overlook the Ozark landscape, echoing with the memories of a dream that never fully materialized.

38. Mudhouse Mansion, USA

When it was standing, nobody really know how or why it was built, adding to the creepy mystery around this place. Found in Ohio, it was once the home of a family who later vacated it, and then it was completely demolished in later years. This only fuelled the fire of people coming up with their own eerie legends.
image source: en.wikipedia.org
Today, Ohio's abandoned mansion lives on in the realm of folklore and unsettling narratives—a ghostly silhouette etched into the memories of those who ponder the enigmatic whispers that still linger in the air. The mansion's legacy persists as a cryptic puzzle.

39. Casa Sperimentale, Italy

The reason this one looks so eerily different to a lot of mansions on this list is because it was actually built as a treehouse! And although you have to be impressed by this, it doesn't change that it looks a little creepy. Located in a coastal town outside of Rome, it was built in the 60s, with the architects family living there.
image source: dezeen.com
Nobody really knows why it was abandoned to waste away, but it's believed to have happened after the architect simply passed away. The coastal town's treehouse mansion, once echoing with the laughter and footsteps of its occupants, now stands as a silent sentinel.

40. Villa de Vecchi, Italy

If this eerie shot isn't enough to give you nightmares, you should also know that this abandoned mansion is known as the 'House of Witches'. It was originally built as a large summer house for the man it's named after, but tragedy soon struck the family.
image source: atlasobscura.com
The architect died after construction, then Vecchi's wife was murdered and his daughter missing. After not being able to find her, he committed suicide. Driven to despair by the accumulation of tragedies, Vecchi himself succumbed to the weight of sorrow, choosing a path of self-inflicted tragedy.

41. Hegeler Carus Mansion, USA

Found in Illinois, this abandoned mansion-home was originally built by the same architect responsible for the state capitol building. The family living there suffered tragedy when two of the children died in the same year, and then another in their early 20s.
image source: en.wikipedia.org
Two children, and later another in their early twenties, succumbed to the cruel hand of fate. The family continued to live in the home until the remaining member finally died, and the house was left empty before being turned into a museum - with some people now saying it very much has 'haunted house' vibes.

42. The Los Feliz Murder House, USA

And if there's one abandoned house likely to be haunted, it's this one. The Los Feliz Murder House based in LA was once the home of a man and his family, until one night he killed his wife in her sleep before trying to do the same to their three children.
image source: housebeautiful.com
Luckily, one of the children woke in time for the children to flee, and the man drank acid, killing himself. In the aftermath of that fateful night, the mansion remained frozen in time—a dwelling stained by the echoes of a brutal crime that cast an eerie shadow over its abandoned corridors.

43. Dungeness Mansion, USA

On Cumberland Island you can find the abandoned Dungeness Mansion and its grounds, which had been home to many different figures through the years, including a British settler and a war hero from the Revolutionary War. The house was later abandoned and left empty, before it then burned down.
image source: southofseeds.com
Today, the ruins of the eerie house and its grounds have been preserved for visitors. The ruins, steadfast against the coastal winds, become a portal to a bygone era, inviting reflection on the transient nature of human endeavors and the haunting allure of abandoned legacies.

44. John List House, USA

John List is the name of the man who killed his whole family back in 1971, in this home in New Jersey. He murdered his wife, his own mother, and his three children. He then laid their bodies out to be found in the ballroom before fleeing the property.
image source: dirt.com
It wasn't until a month later that the bodies were found, and the house was eventually burned down, with a new house being built on top of the remains. Yet, the echoes of the tragedy persist, lingering in the shadows that dance across the rooms of the new structure.

45. Cambusnethan Priory, Scotland

Another creepy abandoned property from Scotland, this was once a very beautiful and unique building, and is actually one of the very last examples of this particular architectural style: Gothic Revival, with a focus on 19th-century neo-Gothic aesthetics.
image source: tripadvisor.co.uk
It was abandoned by the 1980s and left empty and cold, and has since fallen into a state of disrepair, with some believing it doesn't have long left to stand. Now, this architectural gem teeters on the brink of oblivion, the ravages of time and neglect have left their mark.

46. Bamboo Palace, Democratic Republic of Congo

Bamboo Palace was once a way for a dictator in this region to show his power, money and status, and while it once stood proud as an impressive mansion, it's now abandoned and derelict. President Mobutu Sese Seko of Zaire once lived here, and was completely kitted out with extreme luxuries, including a plane runway, which now all stand lost and forgotten.
image source: archive.felixfeatures.com
As the Bamboo Palace languishes in neglect, the shadows of its past continue to beckon curious onlookers, inviting reflection on the tumultuous history of Zaire and the abandoned remnants of a dictator's extravagant dreams that are now lost and forgotten.

47. Swannanoa Mansion, USA

Built in 1912 in the Blue Ridge mountains by a man who wanted a place for he and his wife to life, the house only served as a home for a short time after its completion before both occupants passed away. Left empty, it was then inherited by family members, who went on to sell it.
image source: virginia.org
Unfortunately, the people who bought it then went bankrupt, leaving the enormous mansion empty and rotting - and supposedly haunted. Legends emerged of spectral echoes and haunted hallways, intertwining the melancholic history of the mansion with supernatural lore.

48. Pidhirtsi Castle, Ukraine

Designed by an Italian architect, this once-stunning castle was one of the most impressive in the history of Ukrainian mansions - and it's also now believed to be one of the most haunted castles in the country. The castle was originally vandalized during both the Polish-Soviet War and World War II.
image source: en.wikipedia.org
It was then abandoned completely for around 40 years before being managed by a museum trying to raise funds to restore it and reform some it's earlier glory. Now believed to be one of the most haunted castles in Ukraine...you could certainly bank in on a ghost tour or two!

49. Bokor Hill Station, Cambodia

It's hard to believe this was once a successful mountain resort, and a luxury one at that! Now just a creepy shell of what it used to be, even just a photo of it is enough to tell you it's most likely haunted. You definitely wouldn't want to spend the night there... if you even could.
image source: en.wikipedia.org
In the ominous year of 1972, the mountain resort met its untimely demise, succumbing to an enigmatic fate that left only the colossal structure standing. The corridors that once resonated with the footfalls of well-heeled visitors now lay completely silent.

50. Kinmel Hall, Wales

Originally designed by an English architect, it was at first a residential home until the late 20s when it was then converted to a health center. When World War II began, it was then converted again to a hospital. It then went on to become a girl's school.
image source: en.wikipedia.org
And if there's one thing we know about creepy ghost stories, it's usually the abandoned buildings that were once hospitals or schools! Not to mention it also suffered a fire. . The flames danced through the corridors, consuming the tangible remnants of its vibrant history.