Businessman Buys Venice's 'Haunted' Island, Faces Community Group Challenge

Businessman Buys Venice's 'Haunted' Island, Faces Community Group Challenge

Poveglia's lease sold for €513,000, and its buyer has yet to say what he wants to do with it.

Poveglia's 99-year lease has been sold at auction to businessman Luigi Brugnaro, for €513,000 (c. $704,000). The fate of 'haunted' Poveglia, home in its day to lunatics, plague victims, and - if reality TV is to be believed - any number of ghoulies, ghosties, and long legged beasties, has yet to be decided. Brugnaro has pledged not to undertake speculative development on the island, at least some of which will be retained for community use. He intends to invest €20 million to restore Poveglia's derelict buildings, but hasn't said anything about what else he intends to build out on his new holding in the Venetian lagoon.

"He wanted to do it for Venetians to stop the Arabs or the Chinese from buying it for themselves," claims a spokesman for Brugnaro, adding that the businessman would meet with the mayor and consult with the community before deciding what to do. Meanwhile the local community group Poveglia Per Tutti intends to launch a challenge, claiming that Brugnaro's bid is "surreal." Its own bid was reportedly only €160,000, though its Facebook page seems to suggest it now has €420,000 available.

Poveglia Per Tutti's Lorenzo Pesola says his group will insist that Brugnaro's offer is turned down. The state agency handling the auction has 30 days to decide whether or not Brugnaro's bid will stand. If the challenge is successful, then Brugnaro's offer will be void and Poveglia Per Tutti, the second highest bidder, will win out.

Luigi Brugnaro, former president of the Venice unit of Confindustria, the Italian employer's association, is an advocate of cruise ship tourism in Venice.

Source: Guardian

Images: Muchmoremuchier.com

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Wait, you can do that? Just say "I challenge your bid because I can't bid higher"? If there's more than that to this community group's complaint, the article doesn't mention it.

Interesting. It will either be a gimmick haunted hotel, a renovated asylum or some sort of charity sanctuary, or some form of cheapo apartments.

Or he can whore it out to reality TV and movies for a fat check. Some people do that with old hospitals.

And anyone know what that circular door thing is?

Once, just once when this sort of thing happens I'd like it to turn out the buyer is a wealthy lunatic who wants to unleash the no-doubt long-entombed ancient evil and, I dunno, raise Cthulhu and sick him on Venice? In saying that I've always been interested in that island so if it actually becames a tourist thing, I'd probably go.

Ultratwinkie:
And anyone know what that circular door thing is?

According to muchmorecrunchier, it's actually an old industrial washer/dryer unit that now serves as the only way in and out of the next room.

Frontastic:
Once, just once when this sort of thing happens I'd like it to turn out the buyer is a wealthy lunatic who wants to unleash the no-doubt long-entombed ancient evil and, I dunno, raise Cthulhu and sick him on Venice? In saying that I've always been interested in that island so if it actually becames a tourist thing, I'd probably go.

*sigh* We can only dream...

I wish I had my own haunted insane asylum island...

=P

Beyond that, though...

Falterfire:
Wait, you can do that? Just say "I challenge your bid because I can't bid higher"? If there's more than that to this community group's complaint, the article doesn't mention it.

Didn't need to look far to see what I was going to bring up after reading the article. I don't know much about Italian auction rules, but...yeah, what's the deal with this? "We object! That man's bid should be ruled null and void!" "Verywell, on what grounds do you say his bid should be voided?" "Because it's more than our bid!"

Seriously, this is exactly how I imagine the conversation going:

Frontastic:
Once, just once when this sort of thing happens I'd like it to turn out the buyer is a wealthy lunatic who wants to unleash the no-doubt long-entombed ancient evil and, I dunno, raise Cthulhu and sick him on Venice? In saying that I've always been interested in that island so if it actually becames a tourist thing, I'd probably go.

Eh, there are laws preventing restorations of Venice, so it's inevitably sinking to the deep anyway. You don't have to bring Cthulhu to Venice.

Frontastic:
Once, just once when this sort of thing happens I'd like it to turn out the buyer is a wealthy lunatic who wants to unleash the no-doubt long-entombed ancient evil and, I dunno, raise Cthulhu and sick him on Venice? In saying that I've always been interested in that island so if it actually becames a tourist thing, I'd probably go.

He's pretty much already doing that. Tourism, especially Cruise Ship tourism is slowly destroying the lagoon. Granted, Cthulhu would be more spectacular (and quicker) but if his plan is to sink Venice, the end Result will be the same.

thaluikhain:

Frontastic:
Once, just once when this sort of thing happens I'd like it to turn out the buyer is a wealthy lunatic who wants to unleash the no-doubt long-entombed ancient evil and, I dunno, raise Cthulhu and sick him on Venice? In saying that I've always been interested in that island so if it actually becames a tourist thing, I'd probably go.

Eh, there are laws preventing restorations of Venice, so it's inevitably sinking to the deep anyway. You don't have to bring Cthulhu to Venice.

Why would they legally prevent restoration in the city? That makes no sense "Oh let's let EVERYTHING rot and decay while we're still living here!" "BRILLIANT!"

OT: I'm looking forward to the inevitable movie being filmed there.

otakon17:
Why would they legally prevent restoration in the city? That makes no sense "Oh let's let EVERYTHING rot and decay while we're still living here!" "BRILLIANT!"

Well, not that many people are living there, due to the rot and decay.

Basically, there are very strong heritage laws, you aren't allowed to do anything, because that is changing the original structures. You are allowed to sit there and watch people move away as their city falls into the water and wonder why things aren't magically getting better, though.

thaluikhain:

otakon17:
Why would they legally prevent restoration in the city? That makes no sense "Oh let's let EVERYTHING rot and decay while we're still living here!" "BRILLIANT!"

Well, not that many people are living there, due to the rot and decay.

Basically, there are very strong heritage laws, you aren't allowed to do anything, because that is changing the original structures. You are allowed to sit there and watch people move away as their city falls into the water and wonder why things aren't magically getting better, though.

I'll be honest, that sounds phenomenally stupid. That reminds me of a law in Hurlock Maryland that you can't build anything on land you own unless there is already a structure there. Which makes NO sense as for the structure to already been there, there must have been a structure there before it. But then there must have been a structure there before that... you see where I'm going with this? Stupid fucking laws that make no sense.

Falterfire:
Wait, you can do that? Just say "I challenge your bid because I can't bid higher"? If there's more than that to this community group's complaint, the article doesn't mention it.

My thoughts exactly. I was unaware that you were allowed to protest the results of an auction if someone comes along and completely stomps your max bid. I wonder if that trick works with ebay...?

It sounds like this guy did this with noble intentions even, wanting to keep the island owned by the country. Can't really argue with that. And he said he's going to keep parts of it open, and restore the buildings. Seriously, why is this group upset with him?

Wish I had enough money to buy an entire island...

 

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