A French property tycoon has been ordered to tear down his $70m faux-Italianate palazzo in the hills of Provence after losing a 15-year legal battle over the 32,000 square foot structure, which was built without planning permission.
Patrick Diter has been given 18 months to scrub every last trace of “Chateau Diter,” including its 18 bedrooms, two helipads, swimming pool, bell tower, Roman colonnade and orangery, from the landscape above Monaco.
Subscription newsletter AirMail reports that France’s highest judicial court upheld a previous ruling in the appellate courts that the illegal château near the Provençal village of Grasse must be removed and the countryside restored to its original state.
The news will come as a blow to party planners and TV location scouts seeking extravagant locations; the palace was regularly rented out as a wedding destination and was a set for the TV drama Riviera.
It is also the subject of regular postings on Instagram by guests.
If the court orders are not complied with by June 2022, Diter will pay a fine of $600 per day. The court also slapped Diter with fines totaling $550,000.
Diter’s lawyer said they were considering taking their case to the European Court of Human Rights.
However Paul Euzière, a member of the Grasse city council told AirMail: “That’s ridiculous. Nobody has violated Patrick Diter’s human rights. His rights have been taken into account every step of the way during this legal journey.”