most expensive home on Canada's real estate market, but it whisking your fellow multi-millionaire friends off to your own personal island does bring its own prestige.B.C.'s James Island may not have all the features of the
If that sounds like something up your alley, you're in luck. Scions or business tycoons with an extra $75 million to burn can now scoop up James Island, a 342-hectare property off the province's Gulf Coast.
Seattle telecom billionaire Craig McCaw has placed his island on the market after spending much of the past two decades transforming it from an industrial ghost town into a luxury playground to rival fellow billionaire Richard Branson's Necker Island.
The National Post has images of the spectacular spread, which includes a golf course designed by Jack Nicklaus, a mock western village complete with a stable of those 21st century ponies (the electric car), an organic garden and a general store stocked with everything you'd need for an overcast day at the saloon.
Visitors staying at one of the island's six guest homes can sleep under the same roof that once sheltered past VIPs like Quincy Jones, David Foster and Bill Gates.
If the property's 5,000 square foot wood-paneled main house doesn't speak to your inner Frank Gehry, the exquisite views should make up for it. From every vantage point there's a blast of green landscape framed by the deep blue of the Haro Strait.
A former munitions factory has also been transformed into an entertainment complex overlooking the water and a pool next to an outdoor fire pit.
Don't worry about transportation either. A private dock and airstrip means you can choose between your boat or helicopter depending on how quickly you need to get to your meeting.
Mark Lester of Sotheby's International Realty, the company that's handling the sale, primed the Post with the property's main selling point.
"Obviously, when you've got an island like this, anybody that the current owners have invited to the island are like 'wow,'" he said. "There's a reason they call it an enchanted island."
But while James Island is decked out in the world's finest, McCaw also imbued it with an environmental ethos.
After he purchased the place in 1994, the businessman set about transforming it from a former dynamite plant into a green model ahead of its time.
He's also had to contend with land dispute claims by the Tsawout First Nation, settlers who were removed from the island when the factory was built in the early 20th century.
So after all that time and effort, why is McCaw giving it up?
Because he's facing "the perfect storm of kids' activities and no one wants to be left behind," he said in an e-mail.
Apparently the family is in need of something a little less isolated than its own world.
(Photo from Sotheby's International)