Skip to comments.Bungling builders bulldoze entire historic French chateau by MISTAKE ...
Posted on 12/05/2012 4:55:07 PM PST by Uncle Chip
Blundering builders mistakenly bulldozed an 18th-century chateau in the heart of France's picturesque wine country - when they were only supposed to knock down an outhouse on its estate.
Chateau de Bellevue, 12km to the east of Bordeaux, once boasted 140,000-square-feet of grand reception rooms, ornate fireplaces, winding marble staircases and imposing granite balconies.
Then its new owner, a Russian millionaire businessman, employed a team of Polish builders to renovate the manor to its former baroque glory, including the removal of one small building.
But the workers apparently misunderstood the instructions and pulled down the castle instead, leaving the outhouse completely untouched.
'The Chateau de Bellevue was Yvrac's pride and joy,' said former owner Juliette Marmie. 'The whole village is in shock. How can this construction firm make such a mistake?'
Local media reported that the construction company misunderstood the renovation plans of the current owner, Russian businessman Dmitry Stroskin, to clean up and renovate the manor.
(Excerpt) Read more at dailymail.co.uk ...
Someone has some explaining to do.
employed a team of Polish builders
“Polish workers,” eh. Maybe there’s something to those jokes. ;)
You know. Poland. Russia.
Just a guess.
Moeskie, Curlyskie and Joeskie
But they did bulldoze the mansion and saved the outhouse.
Consolation - “we renovate outhouse for freeee”
Saved the outhouse,and promptly sub-leased it’s basement to the Poles.
Russian oligarch? Those builders' lives aren't worth a plugged nickel now.
Mistake? Incredibly valuable salvage there, you know it didn’t go to a landfill, don’t you?
The Russian was walking past the outhouse and saw one of his Polish contractors throwing a 100 Eureo bill down the hole.
“What in the world are you doing?” he asked.
“I dropped a .5 Euro coin down there and I sure as heck am not going down there for half a Euro.”
Having this Polish joke occur was probably the only way he could arrange the demolition. The newly wealthy Poles are probably lounging on the Mediterrean by now. And the Russian can rebuild the house the way he wants.
It's better to beg for forgiveness than ask for permission - the French authorities would probably have objected to full modernization of the lighting, plumbing, etc.
Polish jokes, Irish jokes, they’re all good.
But I’ve never found Swede jokes very funny.
I’m in complete agreement...it was arranged and scripted to be a ‘mistake’, but the place was likely in terrible condition and could not be made livable. I’ve been to the nicer places that have been kept up in Germany, Netherlands and Italy...with tons of money put into a decade-long restoration. If you got lots of government money....you can wait a decade for full restoration. In this case? Erase your issue and start fresh.
I’m thinking of the Tom Hanks movie “The Money Pit”.
I know. Could you even find anyone in France who knows how to fix “winding marble staircases”? And even if you could could even a Russian mafia boss afford the French marble staircase workers union rates?
You are on to the real story...the costs to do a full renovation would be much, much more than a new manor, so they tear the old place down, say, “oops, my bad” and rebuild with new stuff.
A friend of mine who has a place in France told me today that this is not all that uncommon.
Cary Grant/Tom Hanks. Hmmmm hard to decide. (just kidding).
I’ve seen that movie but years ago so I went to Wikipedia. Seems in Blandings they end up tearing down the original house so yes, a much more appropriate analogy.
Hope the polish guy is bonded.
There is a place in northern Italy, where tons of marble is pulled out and made into whatever you desire. I’m pretty sure that they can find a hundred Italians around who could still cut and fit a winding stairway in the old methods. I would agree...in England and France...there might be just two or three guys left. But in Italy? There’s probably 500 of these guys around.
Grand total for the house and property was $38,000 according to Mrs. Blandings in their first night in the house. Assuming the factor used to arrive at the 2010 value show above is correct, the total cost of the house and property would be $340,000
Think of that. In 50 years the value of the dollar was devalued 90%
Blandings is an advertising executive living in Manhattan. His salary in the movie is $15,000/year.
He was an ad man. Kind of a 1940s version of “Man Men”.
He saved his job by coming up with the slogan (actually his maid came up with it) If you ain’t eat’n Wham you ain’t eat’n ham.
They had MAIDS on $15,000/year. Unbelievable.
Sorry “Mad Men”.
If they were working for the Obama administration it would be just another day on the job
The AC-cent was on the wrong syl-LAL-ble.
Nice alliteration there, BTW.
Polish builders... Russian businessman...umm sure it was a misunderstanding ;)
“.....employed a team of Polish builders to renovate.....”
Key word: Polish.
In the 1970’s Steve Martin wrote a short story about a similar occurrence.
It seems a Mr. Rivers was New York City crane operator for a demolition company. He was sent to France for a special job. He started work, and due to a poorly drawn map, began the demolition of the Cathedral at Chatres.
He knocked out all of the stained glass and a couple of the walls of the structure.
He was sent back home immediately, and upon his return, went to the library and opened up books on the Cathedral and read about it. He thought to himself how lucky he was to have seen it before it was destroyed.