A month ago we heard rumors that
Russian billionaire Roman Abarmovich had bought the world's most expensive house on the French Riviera. Turns out that the rumor was true but the buyer was false. The Times reports that a mystery Russian billionaire
who is not Abramovich paid 500 million euros (over $750 million) for Villa Leopolda, a Belle Époque mansion in Villefrance on the Côte d'Azur. The home is owned by Lily Safra, the widow of Edmond Safra, a Lebanese banker who was killed by an arsonist's fire in
Monaco in 2003. A few years ago it was rumored that the house had been bought by Bill Gates and this house is one of the most prized pieces of real estate in the world.
According to rumor, Mrs Safra held out for months as the eager mystery buyer kept raising the price for the historic villa which King Leopold II of Belgium acquired in 1902 and which was also once owned by Fiat tycoon, Gianni Agnelli. The mystery billionaire is now the owner of a turreted mansion and two guest houses on 20 acres of grounds with hundreds of olive, cypress and lemon trees tended by 50 gardeners.