Oprah Winfrey – The Promised Land
Talk show host Oprah Winfrey’s media empire means she is one of the biggest names in America, with her own magazine and TV channel. Her 23,000 square foot mansion in Montecito, California has the rather pompous name of ‘The Promised Land’. Oprah explained the title was inspired by civil rights activist Martin Luther King: “Dr. King said he would not get to the Promised Land but one day we might. And so that’s why I called it that… because I think it’s a fulfilment of the promise that Dr. King spoke of.” Oprah is particularly proud of her huge rose garden that has over 600 blooms.
Michael Jackson – The Neverland Ranch
Michael Jackson’s famous home is named after the magical land in J.M Barrie’s Peter Pan where children never have to grow up. In its 90s heyday, the property contained a petting zoo and a funfair complete with a ferris wheel and a rollercoaster. After the death of Jackson in 2009, the ranch became neglected, but his children have recently invested in the property, including transforming the funfair into a meditative zen garden.
Bill Gates – Xanadu 2.0
Bill Gates’s mega mansion, built on the shores of Lake Washington in Seattle, has been dubbed with the nickname ‘Xanadu 2.0’. This is a reference to the film Citizen Kane, about a media magnate who builds a grand mansion called Xanadu, a symbol of his wealth and, ultimately, his loneliness. Gates’s house cost $100 million to build and boasts a 2,500 square foot gym, a ‘trampoline room’, and a 20 seat theatre complete with its own popcorn machine.
Jennifer Aniston – Ohana
Jennifer Aniston’s $42 million Beverly Hills home is an entertainment pad like no other, including an outdoor living room, complete with fireplace, a caterers kitchen, televisions that are hidden in the floor and waterfalls and fountains that flow in and out of the house. ‘Ohana’ is Hawaiian for ‘Extended Family’, which perfectly suited Aniston’s single girl life. She moved out last year after finding love with Justin Theroux, but the house’s name remains.