Music News

Selling Neverland: First listed for $100 million, Michael Jackson's famous ranch goes for $22 million

Jason Kirk/Getty Images

Michael Jackson‘s famed Neverland Ranch has finally been sold.

The Los Olivos, CA property has been on and off the market for many years, The Wall Street Journal reports. As of last year, it was listed for $31 million.  Now, billionaire Ron Burkle has purchased it for $22 million. Burkle was once a financial advisor to Michael in the mid-2000s, when the star was having money problems because of his lavish lifestyle.

Neverland, which was first listed in 2015 for $100 million, was purchased by the late King of Pop back in 1987 for $19.5 million. Giving it a name inspired by Peter Pan, MJ built a railroad and an amusement park on the grounds, and also kept exotic animals there, including an elephant.

The Wall Street Journal reports that the current property covers 2,700 acres and includes 22 different structures, including a 12,000-square foot mansion, a 50-seat movie theater, basketball and tennis courts, guest houses and a swimming pool.

Michael stopped visiting Neverland after his 2005 trial on child molestation charges, on which he was acquitted. In 2008, according to the WSJ, the superstar defaulted on a loan that was backed by the property, whereupon the note was bought by a real estate investment trust, which then owned the property as a joint venture with Michael and, later, his estate.

When it was offered for sale, the ranch was renamed Sycamore Valley Ranch in an effort to distance it from MJ and rumors about what had gone on there, as alleged in the controversial HBO documentary Leaving Neverland.

By Andrea Dresdale
Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.