It is estimated that legendary cocaine kingpin Pablo Escobar was worth $30 billion at the height of his career. With that kind of fortune comes plenty of assets. One of those assets was a 7,336-square-foot Miami with four bedrooms, six bathrooms, a pool, a garage and a marina on Biscayne Bay. The property, which sits at 5860 North Bay Rd., was purchased by Escobar in March 1980 for $762,500, in his name. According to the Miami Herald, the home’s present owner, Christian de Berdouare, plans to have the property demolished today to build a new, more extravagant mansion in its place.
It is not clear whether the Colombian cocaine kingpin actually lived in the mansion or even visited it. However, it is believed to have been used as a hideout for El Padrino’s shooters and a stash house for tons of cocaine, according to former DEA agent Jim Shedd. The property was seized by US authorities in 1987, along with $20 million that Escobar had hidden in various places. Three years before Escobar’s death, Attorney Roger Schindler bought the house from the government, but it was left abandoned for years after a fire destroyed at least two rooms. In that time span, vandals broke windows in the house and tagged the walls with graffiti. Holes in the walls indicate that someone was in there looking for hidden treasure.
De Berdouare, founder of the fast food chain Chicken Kitchen, bought the mansion in 2014 for $9.65 million. Before having the mansion razed to the ground, de Berdouare and his journalist wife Jennifer Valoppi hired treasure hunters to search the house professionally for buried cash or dead bodies. The house that the couple plans on building in place of Escobar’s mansion has been valued at $21 million. The couple already owns three properties on the same street, but plan on selling one of the others and moving into the new house when it’s ready. All that will remain of the old mansion will be a banyan tree. “We want to close a very dark chapter in the history of Miami,” Valoppi said. She added that Escobar “killed so many people. We want to erase those memories and create something new and inspiring.”