This week, we visit a property that represents the highest of high end: the most expensive home currently offered for sale to the general public in San Diego County.
Villa Nafisa is a 39-acre estate constructed in 1995 and located at 5992 Calle Camposeco in the tony North County enclave of Rancho Santa Fe, home to notable names such as weight-loss guru Jenny Craig and currently-disgruntled Californian golf pro Phil Mickelson.
“Wooden gates lead into the Villa, which is ensconced in a gated community with 24-hour security,” intones a voice reading the listing’s remarks in a YouTube slide show promoting the property.
In addition to a 16,000-square-foot 8-bedroom, 8½-bathroom main residence, the property comes with two guest houses, adding another 10 bedrooms, a separate reading room, a “resort club,” and a gymnasium, for a total of just under 31,000 square feet of living space.
“Floor to ceiling hand carved windows in the living area frame the lush surroundings, while gleaming marble floors reflect the abundant natural light,” according to the listing agent’s description of the primary house.
The grounds feature landscaping modeled after “modern interpretations of Monet’s famed gardens,” featuring “a serene backdrop for the flourishing flora” present in lily pad–dotted koi ponds, waterfalls, and “quiet meditation space.”
The grounds feature landscaping modeled after Monet’s gardens.
When you’re ready to do more than quietly contemplate the beauty surrounding you, visit the “family barbecue area,” fire pit, the onsite tennis, basketball, and badminton courts, or the grassy fields manicured and ready for a pickup game of soccer or touch football.
Car buffs or those inclined to entertain are covered, too: a motor court provides room for 13 vehicles, and garages on the property can shield another 14 autos from the elements.
Title to the estate is difficult to track. An International Farms, Ltd., a company based in the Cayman Islands, acquired the property in 1991, before the home was built, and then transferred it to Villa Nafissa, LLC, another Cayman Islands shell company, in 1998.
5992 Calle Camposeco
5992 Calle Camposeco
The signer of that transfer deed was Mohammed Abduljawad, a noted Saudi Arabian businessman. A 1996 article in the San Diego Union-Tribune stated the owner was actually Ziyad Abduljawad. In the investigation that exposed the criminal behavior of former congressional representative Randy “Duke” Cunningham in 2006, it was uncovered that Ziyad had paid for Cunningham and two alleged co-conspirators to accompany him to Saudi Arabia, where they met with crown prince (now king) Abdullah bin Abdulaziz “to promote discourse and better relations between the two nations.” It was reported that no staff from Cunningham’s office was invited on the trip.
The home has been on the market since early May of last year with no change to the asking price of $40,000,000, roughly the equivalent of 109 median-priced San Diego County single-family homes at $367,500 each (as of December 2012).