Live the high life on Wisconsin’s Oconomowoc Lake, once the summertime escape for Milwaukee’s beer barons.
The 16,000-square-foot “Minnewoc mansion” on the lake was listed for sale on Monday for $10.5 million. The six-bedroom, 10-bathroom home is currently the most expensive listing in southeastern Wisconsin, according to Coldwell Banker Elite broker Jon Spheeris, as well as listings on Redfin.
“The setting is spectacular,” Mr. Spheeris said of the home, which sits on more than seven acres and has 800 feet of land on the water. “Oconomowoc is one of the finest lakes out here.”
Once known as the “Newport of the Midwest,” the area attracted rich brewers, according to Mr. Spheeris. That included the Millers, the Schlitz family and the Pabsts.
Minnewoc mansion is, in fact, located on Pabst Road, but was built in 1892 for another brewer: George Bullen from Chicago. He bought the land, called Minnewoc, in 1888, and spent many years documenting the environment of the lake, according to research by Jeff Gramins, also at Coldwell Banker Elite.
Bullen may have been a distant relative of Anne Boleyn, King Henry VIII’s second wife, Mr. Gramins said, and the mansion is an approximate replica of Boleyn’s Hever Castle in England.
It’s rough-hewn stone walls and other details give it a historic feel, but the mansion has been completely renovated since the current owners bought it in 1999. According to public records, they paid $211,000 for the home.
The massive overhaul of the building included adding 6,000 square feet of space and more than 70 solar panels, Mr. Spheeris said. But the character of the home remains.
Behold the home that booze built 🍸
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“They used all the same stone, the same copper, the same marble,” he said.
Inside, a grand foyer with white porcelain floors and the main dark wood staircase greets residents and their guests. In the eastern part of the house, there’s a library with built-in bookshelves, a cozy sitting area with a fireplace and a light and airy music room.
Three red crystal chandeliers hang over the table in the formal dining room behind the stairs, which also has a fireplace, according to the listing. The granite and Jerusalem Travertine kitchen has been designed with custom-made cabinetry, a double Wolf range and a SubZero refrigerator.
A sunroom is also on the main floor, which has bay windows, Jerusalem Travertine floors and a pyramid skylight. There’s also a wet bar, so there will always be something to drink while taking in views of the lake.
The master suite is 1,300 square feet, with double glass doors leading out onto a balcony. The bathroom is clad in black-and-white marble and has a double vanity, nine-foot double-sized shower and a soaking tub. A large walk-in closet has granite counters and takes up almost half the suite, according to the listing. There are five additional bedroom suites.
The lower level offers a state-of-the-art entertainment area, with a bar, wine cellar, billiards room and patio. Plus, there’s a four-car garage.
Outside, the property has landscaped gardens and stone paths throughout, as well as a gazebo, a fire pit and an outdoor kitchen. A boathouse with an automatic lift is next to the pier on the lake.
A three-bedroom guest cottage is also on the property, as well as a tower that once supplied water to the estate, plus a decommissioned coal-fired electric plant. The property is about 35 miles from Milwaukee.
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