The best-selling book series in history; Harry Potter fantasy series of seven novels by British novelist Joanne Kathleen Rowling has sold about 450 million copies, which actually led the author to led a ‘rags to riches’ life story. Now the ‘Most Influential Women in Britain,’ Rowling progressed from living on security to billionaire status within just five years, after the release of first edition of Harry Potter. Interestingly, the author conceived the series idea on a train trip from Manchester to London in 1990, and her childhood Church Cottage home with a gothic architecture have been the main inspiration behind the Harry potter series, which has since become a multi-million dollar franchise, with seven novels and eight successful films. Now, that very same house that inspired Harry Potter books is up for grabs as the current owner Julian Mercer, a BBC producer who bought the house back in 1995 from Rowling family is selling it. However, at her current 17th century Edinburgh mansion, JK Rowling planned 40-foot tree houses, as a mother’s effort to fulfill her children’s dream of living in a fantasy.
JK Rowling’s childhood home, the Grade II-listed Church Cottage in Tutshil, near Chepstow, boasts gothic architecture and has echoes of the corridors of Hogwarts.
Out of the three bedrooms in the house, one room has “Joanne Rowling slept here circa 1982” scrawled on the bedroom window by Rowling herself. The billionaire author, now 45, lived at the house with her mother Anne, father Peter and sister Diane from the age nine to 18.
Fans would certainly recognize many parallels with the story at Church Cottage, like a dusty cupboard under the stairs is reminiscent of where Harry is forced to live by his evil auntie Petunia and uncle Vernon Dursley in the first book. And, the dining room has a spooky trap door, which is perfect for wizard Harry to make a quick escape.
Also, the author even used the name of her home village, Tutshill, as one of the Quidditch teams in the books.
Also, collectors can bid for the original training broom which was used by Daniel Radcliffe ‘Harry Potter’ to learn how to fly in the most memorable scene from the Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone movie. This one-of-a-kind prop is selling as part of the Hollywood auction, which will be held on Sep. 15-16.
Christine Svennigsen is selling off her two private islands near Connecticut
The widow of ‘party-goods magnate’ John Svennigsen, Christine Svennigsen who owns not just 4-5 private islands but about a dozen in Long Island Sound off the Branford Connecticut coast has now listed two of them on the market for a combined price of $6 million, through William Pitt Sotheby’s in Madison.
For an acre large Belden Island which also has a 2,100 sq. ft colonial house, the seller is asking a price of $3.95 million, and $2 million for Jepson Island which is about one-quarter of an acre and has a 1,100 sq. ft house.
Manhattan Townhouse sells for $32 million
Location: 815 Fifth Avenue, Manhattan, New York City
In the times, when owners of lavish mansions have been seen chopping-off their listing price by considerable amounts in order to sell it, a Manhattan townhouse has got sold for $32 million, a price which is $7 million above than its asking price. The seller was actually a real estate investor who had owned the property for 62 years. Built in 1750, this Italianate-style former mansion located at 815 Fifth Avenue, has since been subdivided into offices and apartments.
Overlooking Central Park, this lavish six-storey building is the oldest building on the Fifth Avenue. below 110th street, boasting 10,000 sq. ft of living space, 12 apartments and two offices. Notably, the owner paid only $120,000 for the property in early 1950s and then converted it into an apartment building.
Ben Stiller’s Manhattan duplex
Location: Manhattan, New York
Those who’re looking to move into the Capital of the World or the Big Apple, New York City, can now buy a lavish celebrity house in Manhattan. As comedian-turned successful movie star, writer, producer Ben Stiller has listed his Manhattan duplex on the market at a price of $9.6 million.
Contrary to the above stated Manhattan townhouse which got sold for $7 million above its asking price, Ben Stiller and his wife Christine Stiller are actually asking for 400,000 less than what they bought the home for just four years ago.
The couple actually moved into this five bedroom and five-and-a-half bathroom duplex with their family, when they made their big move from California to New York in 2008.