Rome villa with Caravaggio mural fails to sell again

Once again Rome villa with Caravaggio ceiling mural fails to sell

Culture News

Casino dell’Aurora, the Rome villa which is home to the world’s only surviving Caravaggio ceiling mural, went up for auction for the second time on Thursday. Once again, there were no bidders.

The reserve price of €282 million would not be lowered further, the auction organisers said. A fresh auction for “the world’s most expensive home” will be set up within 45 days.

The Renaissance villa, include artistic jewels such as Caravaggio’s Jupiter, Neptune and Pluto mural. This second attempt to sell it lasted until Thursday afternoon, when the auction was declared “deserted” again. The first attempt ended the same way in mid-January.

The starting price at the first auction was €471 million wait a reserve set at €353.25 million. Initially, the price of the Caravaggio mural alone was believed to be €310million.

The lavish villa also features five rooms with frescoes by Guercino. In addition, there are sculptures, statues and a splendid garden, although much of the structure needs a makeover.

Related article: Villa Aurora up for sale

Why is the villa up for sale?

The villa is being auctioned off after the heirs of an Italian nobleman, Prince Nicolo’ Boncompagni Ludovisi, failed to reach an agreement for the future of the residence following his death in 2018.

His widow, 72-year-old Texas-born former actress, television journalist, and real estate executive Princess Rita Boncompagni Ludovisi, told Reuters that Bill Gates and a Qatari emir were among those to have expressed an interest in the 2,800-square-metre property.

The princess had failed to agree with the prince’s children on who should get ownership of the villa.

A petition has been launched via calling on Culture Minister Dario Franceschini to intervene and take out Italy’s option to buy the home and its artworks.

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