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La Vigie villa in southern France
Photograph: Knight Frank

Now on the market: a spectacular French villa that Picasso used as a studio

The Côte d’Azur property has seven bedrooms, six bathrooms – and, potentially, Picasso paintings under the wallpaper

Ed Cunningham
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Ed Cunningham
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Sometimes a property comes with a fascinating feature or two that sets it apart. Maybe it’s a nice heritage fireplace or a cool bay window; maybe a famous person lived there or something famous happened within its walls. That kind of stuff. One property that’s just gone on the market in France, however, has a pretty unbeatable historic feature: it was once used as a studio by none other than Pablo Picasso.

The place is called La Vigie and it’s on the Cap d’Antibes peninsula on the French Riviera. Built in 1912, it was owned by American businessman Frank Gould and his French socialite wife Florence Lacaze in the ’20s.

It was by Lacaze’s invitation that La Vigie found itself host to Picasso, who used the garage as a studio in the summer of 1924 and mentioned it in his diaries. At the peak of his post-cubist period, in which Picasso was diving into neo-classicist and surrealist styles, he is, excitingly, rumoured to have painted directly onto the walls of some of the salons and bedrooms.

Those paintings have since been covered up (so you’d be taking a bit of a risk on banking on them actually being there) but, Picasso stuff aside, La Vigie is a pretty spectacular abode. This place boasts at least seven bedrooms and six bathrooms, as well as a dining room, salon, games room, wine cellar, infinity pool, stately garden, vast patio and neo-gothic style tower – all looking out directly onto the Med. In other words, pads don’t get much swisher than this. Here are a few pics.

La Vigie villa in southern France
Photograph: Knight Frank
La Vigie villa in southern France
Photograph: Knight Frank
La Vigie villa in southern France
Photograph: Knight Frank
La Vigie villa in southern France
Photograph: Knight Frank

Plus, it isn’t just Picasso who graced these halls. French poet and filmmaker Jean Cocteau and American author F Scott Fitzgerald were also chummy with Lacaze.

So how much for all this? Well, the asking price is, unsurprisingly, a little eyewatering. The house has been listed for €27 million (£23.6 million, $26.8 million) by British estate agent Knight Frank.

You can find out more about it on the official property listing here – and get fantasising about owning your own Picasso-painted abode.

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