Friday, May 3, 2013

Wrigley Mansion - Phoenix

The house that gum built is pretty impressive with Moroccan-inspired architectural themes detailing the ceilings and tile work. The 16,000 sq ft home looks over the Arizona Biltmore, and sits on about 15 acres in a beautiful area of Phoenix. The Wrigley's considered it their winter cottage.

The 1920's era Steinway piano is one of two privately-owned player pianos in existence and is currently worth something like $18M. It plays 12 different Gershwin classics, including Rhapsody in Blue which we got to listen to. Mr. Hormel (the potted meat guy) saved the mansion from the wrecking ball when he purchased the mansion in 1991 for $2.1M. Mr. Wrigley was so fond of the piano that his will stipulated it could never be separated from the home (Liberace had given his son a blank check to try and buy it from Wrigley's son at one point).  At the time of his purchase of the mansion, Hormel knew full-well that the piano alone was worth more than the purchase price for the entire estate (William Wrigley spent $1.2M to build it in 1931). 

All the tiles were brought in from Catalina Island, 99% of which Mr Wrigley owned. Bathrooms are beautifully tiled--the pictures are rather uninspiring and simply don't do them justice. 

Moroccan-themed ceiling over the entrance with gold-leaf detailing

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