Here and in France, rumors are running wild over George and Amal Clooney’s supposed acquisition of the sprawling Domaine du Canadel wine estate in the Provence town of Brignoles. The Clooneys bought the estate from Richard and Diana Wiesener, an Australian couple living in Monaco. Or at least, they thought they did …
The beautiful 425-acre estate, located in the Var, is listed with an asking price of €7 million ($9.65 million), but it has languished on the market for some time, waiting for the right buyers. The 18th century mansion has been exquisitely renovated; there is a pool, tennis court, boules pitch, formal gardens, ornamental lake, olive grove and 25-acre vineyard. The estate is a half-hour drive from Château Miraval, co-owned by ex-couple Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie. Twenty minutes away is Château Marguï, owned by George Lucas. And the Brignoles locals are thrilled with the potential arrival of the Clooneys.
"His arrival could do us a lot of good," said Brignoles Mayor Didier Brémond. "With George Clooney, we are in a new dimension."
"I don't know if he's going to exploit the vineyard," said Eric Lambert, president of AOC Coteaux Varois wine syndicate. "Up until now, the production from Domaine du Canadel goes to the Brignoles Cooperative. But in buying in our region, he'll certainly become a new ambassador for the AOC."
According to Brémond, Clooney bought the estate primarily for rest and relaxation—but it’s hard to imagine he doesn't see the potential for a rosé. In 2017, Clooney and partners Rande Gerber and Mike Meldman sold their Tequila brand Casamigos for $1 billion to Diageo.
Alas, it has come to light that another potential buyer claims to have signed a contract to purchase the estate this past August for a reported €6 million, before Clooney signed his own agreement. The local prosecutor's office confirmed that the disgruntled would-be buyer filed a lawsuit against the sellers in the Draguignan tribunal in March, contesting the transaction. The plaintiff's lawyer, Guy Azzari, told the French media that it will likely take several months before the case goes to trial.
According to Azzari, under French law, "In the event that the seller overrides (the agreement) and despite it sells the property with the assistance of a notary to a third party, in this case Mr. Clooney, there will be uncertainty over the property as long as the Draguignan court has not handed down its decision, which is to say for a period of one to four years."
There is no indication that the Clooneys are accused of any wrongdoing, nor aware of any real-estate hijinks. But sadly, it's unlikely that they'll be making rosé anytime soon.
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