For sale on China's Taobao: Italian villa for USD 16.4 mn

May 22, 2015, 06:35 IST | PTI

Shanghai: For sale online to a wealthy Chinese buyer: historic Italian villa, starting price USD 16.4 million, immigration possible.

A sprawling luxury property near the Italian city of Verona -- home to Shakespeare's star-crossed lovers Romeo and Juliet -- was put up for auction today on Taobao, the flagship site of Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba.

Photographs show a pale two-storey building with a red tile roof amid grounds featuring manicured lawns and neatly trimmed hedges dotted with statues surrounding a fountain.

Inside a well-stocked library is pictured dominated by a large table.

The seller, a Beijing-based immigration firm called Cansine, started bidding at 100 million yuan (USD 16.4 million) but said the property was worth 173.25 million yuan.

The villa has a floor area of 2,831 square metres (30,500 square feet), it added, claiming the buyer would be able to apply for residency in Italy.

Nevertheless by a third of the way into the sale period -- which will last only 12 hours -- no buyers had come forward.

"Not a single bid so far, real rich people won't come here. This is just a stunt," said one of the more than 90,000 who viewed the online auction.

Alibaba's Taobao is estimated to hold more than 90 per cent of the consumer-to-consumer market in China. Under its rules, the seller is responsible for the authenticity of the item description and supporting documentation.

Cansine could not be immediately reached for comment.

Go to top