US

Saudis Buy Jackie O’s Childhood Home For $43 Million

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Will Racke Immigration and Foreign Policy Reporter

The government of Saudi Arabia has purchased a Washington, D.C.-area estate that was also a childhood home of Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis for $43 million, according to real estate agents.

Known as Merrywood, the home sits on a seven-acre plot high above the banks of the Potomac River in the wealthy Washington suburb of McLean, Va. It is currently owned by AOL co-founder Steve Case.

The Saudi government intends to use the residence when its dignitaries visit the U.S., according to a Saudi spokeswoman.

“The Saudi government understands the historical significance of the Merrywood home and has tremendous respect for its place in American history,” the spokeswoman said in a statement, according to the Wall Street Journal. (RELATED: Crown Prince Of Saudi Arabia Recognizes Israel’s Right To Exist)

The sale, which closed last week, is reportedly the most expensive residential sale on record in the Washington metro area.

Built in 1919, Merrywood became the home of Jacqueline Bouvier when her mother married the estate’s owner, Standard Oil heir Hugh D. Auchincloss, in the 1940s. The Georgian-style mansion totals about 23,000 square feet, with nine bedrooms and 13 bathrooms. The grounds include a swimming pool, a tennis court and a pavilion with a gym, lap pool, kitchen and changing rooms, TheWSJ reported.

Merrywood is not Saudi Arabia’s first real estate purchase along the exclusive stretch of Chain Bridge Road. Down the street is the official Saudi ambassador’s residence, and the Saudi government bought at least two multi-million dollar homes nearby in the 1990s.

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