A Look Inside Oprah’s Mammoth $90 Million Mansion
If you are a child of the ’80s and ’90s, then you’re most likely familiar with the show “Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous.” The program was notorious for featuring extravagant celebrities and socialites and the way that they flaunted their money for the camera.
Although we no longer have access to the gorgeous spectacle of “Lifestyles,” that hasn’t stopped celebrities from having champagne wishes and caviar dreams. Today we’re going to talk about Oprah Winfrey and the story of how she wound up with a $90 million mansion in California.
If you have a few million dollars and want a relaxing place to live alongside other millionaires, then Montecito is the perfect location. The city is located just east of Santa Barbara, and it has gorgeous coastal views, as we can see.
Average home prices for the city are well into the seven-figure range, with many of them going for around $30-40 million. Fortunately, Oprah’s net worth is over $3 billion, so buying a home there wasn’t much of an issue for her.
Road to the Promised Land
Although Oprah owns six properties in the US, this mansion in Montecito would become her crown jewel. She even calls it the Promised Land, and it’s easy to see why. Any aerial photos of the estate can’t do it justice. There is just too much beauty to behold to see it all in a single image.
Before Oprah bought the house, it belonged to Robert and Marlene Veloz. They made their money through an aeronautical equipment manufacturing business, and they had no intention of selling the home. However, after visiting the estate for a party in 2001, Oprah knew she had to have it.
An Offer They Couldn’t Refuse
Although the house wasn’t technically for sale, everyone (or so they say) has a price. Apparently, $52 million was more than sufficient for the Velozes to pack up and let Oprah stake a claim to the property.
At the time, the purchase was the largest in the country. Even today, it’s hard to find a mansion worth that much. Of course, based on the renovations and upgrades that Oprah has made over the past few years, the home is now worth over $90 million.
A History of Class
Part of the reason why Oprah was so committed to buying this mansion was because of its ornate style and timeless architecture. The property was built in 1912 in a stunning Georgian style, although the original structure was much smaller than it is today.
Over the decades, new additions have been added to the estate, not including the ones that Oprah made herself (more on those later). All told, the property covers over 23,000 square feet and has at least 14 bathrooms, as well as six bedrooms. Other highlights include a wine cellar, a theater, and a massive pool.
What’s in a Name?
After buying the property, Oprah wandered through the grounds with longtime friend Bob Greene. She was searching for a new name to call her modern-day palace. At first, she suggested Tara II, based on the picturesque plantation cited in Gone With the Wind.
Bob felt that the name wasn’t suitable, particularly because it was a bit peculiar to have a plantation name for her new home. Instead, he suggested Promised Land, and she agreed that it would be perfect for her.
Although she is quite private about her home life, we’ve been able to find some stunning photos of both the exterior and interior of the estate. Here are some of the highlights.
A Garden of Eden
If you were to spend time in Oprah’s “sanctuary” garden, you would be hard-pressed to find a more relaxing spot on Earth. The views from the Promised Land are spectacular no matter where you stand, but they are even more bountiful when nestled inside the garden. This statue harkens to the religious element of her estate and helps provide peace to all those who visit.
A Woman’s World
Oprah is a patron of the fine arts, and this piece caught her attention. It was built in 1974 by Costa Rican artist Francisco Zuniga. It is called “Grupo de Cuatro Mujeres de Pie,” or “Group of Four Women on Foot.”
Each woman represents a part of life, starting with a teenager, an expectant mother, a middle-aged woman, and an elderly one. They stand guard around eucalyptus, palm, and pine trees, always resolute in their resolve.
One of Oprah’s neighbors owned a relatively small, 23.26-acre parcel of land called Seamair Farm. The previous owner died in 2016, meaning that the estate went up for sale. Oprah decided to buy it for a modest sum of $28.85 million and added it to the Promised Land.
With the addition of Seamair, Oprah received a variety of new highlights, including a koi pond, a ranch house, stables, and an equestrian ring. The property also contained avocado and fruit orchards, for good measure.
The Twelve Apostles
Our final entry for the exterior of the Promised Land is one of Oprah’s twelve oak trees. In keeping with the biblical theme, she refers to them as her apostles, as they offer solidarity and tranquility for her all year round. She had most of them planted after buying the estate, and they are some of her favorite parts of the property.
A Grand Entrance
The foyer of any mansion can be one of the most crucial elements of the property. It’s the first thing that guests see when they walk in, and it can create a lasting impression. Oprah’s foyer is both personal and opulent.
Artwork decorates the walls, along with an ornate staircase and vivid coloring. However, on the tables are pictures of her friends and family, showing that even the super-rich and famous are just like the rest of us.
Library of Alexandria
For many bookworms, the idea of having a full-sized library in the home seems like a fantasy. For Oprah, it’s a reality. We can see the full scope of her reading habit, although one wonders how many of these books she reads regularly, or whether she lends them out to some of her famous friends and colleagues.
She also has a reading room for cozying up to one of the many books she owns. Although having a separate room for reading seems a little superfluous, we’re sure that she has the space for it. After all, how else can she come up with her recommendations for her book club?
An Experience in Every Room
It would be easy for someone to use similar decorating styles for such a massive home, but Oprah likes to mix things up. As these images show, each room is distinct with its own color palette and designs. Presumably, this diversity also makes it easier to find your way around the place.
Although most of the pieces in this room have been auctioned off, they show the range of Oprah’s tastes, including somewhat questionable color and design schemes.
Her guest room looks like a quaint bed and breakfast, although something tells us that she isn’t the one cooking eggs.
Not all of the rooms have Oprah’s touch. This space in the guest house was created by a professional design team, which used the penny centerpiece as the inspiration for the color scheme.
Although the Promised Land is an opulent paradise, this dining room looks rather subdued and cozy. No extra long, pompous tables here.
Tea for Two
Although tea time is not an American pastime, that hasn’t stopped Oprah from enjoying a cup every so often, whether by herself or with friends. As we can see, the tea house is just as stunning as the rest of the property, and the inside is both inviting and luxurious.
A Fashion Icon
As most women can attest, having a walk-in closet is like a dream. As we’ve seen, Oprah is not one to skimp on her dreams, which is how she has such a massive space for all of her clothes and accessories. Ladies, eat your heart out.