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Celeb Homes

Prince Left His Purple Stamp Everywhere He Lived -- Especially in Chanhassen

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prince-paisley-park-rainbow (2016 Getty Images)

The unexpected death this week of musical pioneer Prince set off a wave of grief around the world. But nowhere was the artist mourned more deeply than in his hometown of Minneapolis.

Although his fame took him to Hollywood and around the world, one could say he always stayed true to the city of his birth. But no matter where he lived, a Prince residence -- even a rental -- was always unmistakable.

Singer Kesha told a funny story on "The Tonight Show" back in 2014 about the time she broke into Prince's house -- long before her ascent to fame -- to leave a demo CD.

"Everything was purple velvet," she recalled.

The security-deficient house in question may have been the one known locally as the "Purple House," on the shore of Lake Riley in Chanhassen, a suburb of Minneapolis. Prince built it with the proceeds of his blockbuster 1987 album "Sign 'o' the Times." However, he had it demolished in 2003, possibly in reaction to a dispute with his sister over their late father's estate, according to the Inquisitr.com.

(The Purple House is not to be confused with the "Purple Rain" house, which was featured in the movie. That three-bedroom, two-bathroom Minneapolis home changed hands in 2015 for $117,000.)

More recently, Prince actually made his home in his Paisley Park Studios complex, where he was found dead on Thursday. Prince also had the complex built in 1987 for about $10 million. It served as a recording and rehearsal space, occasional party venue, and, for a while, the headquarters of his record label.

Brush with foreclosure

As of 2011, according to the local paper Chanhassen Villager, Prince owned more than 200 acres of land throughout Chanhassen, making him one of the town's largest landowners.

He wasn't exactly an outstanding taxpayer, though. The Minneapolis Star-Tribune reported in 2013 that a 20-acre property he owned on Galpin Boulevard in Chanhassen fell into foreclosure and was about two weeks away from being sold at auction when the singer finally ponied up payment for the balance of the mortgage: $368,000. The land -- Prince had a home there, but razed it in 2005 -- is currently valued at $1.5 million, the Star-Tribune noted. He had taken out a mortgage on the property in 1994 for $605,000.

It wasn't the musician's first brush with property payment delinquency, either. The Star-Tribune reported that in 2012, he'd paid $1.3 million in current and delinquent property taxes on 14 parcels in Carver County, including Paisley Park. He also was late paying his tax bills to the county in 2006 and 2008.

The worst tenant -- or the best?

Prince also landed in legal hot water in 2004, when he decided to renovate the home he was renting in Beverly Hills to his, ah, idiosyncratic tastes. His landlord? NBA power forward Carlos Boozer.

"My Realtor was like, 'Yo, there's this guy who wants to rent your house. He saw it before you bought it,'" Boozer told the Chicago Tribune in 2011. "I was like, 'I'm not leasing my house. I've never done that.'

"The amount of money he was willing to pay made me reconsider. And that's how Prince rented my house out."

Prince was paying $70,000 per month on an eight-month lease for the 10-bedroom, 11-bathroom home, according to the Tribune.

Still, Boozer clearly had no idea what he was getting into.

Boozer's lawsuit, posted on The Smoking Gun, accused Prince of such violations of his tenant agreement as "painting the exterior of the subject premises with purple striping, 'prince' symbol, and numbers 3121"; installing plumbing for beauty salon chairs and purple monogrammed carpet in the master bedroom; and cutting a large hole in a downstairs bedroom wall.

"Booz was livid" after seeing the alterations, Boozer's former Duke teammate Jay Williams told ESPN in 2011.

"Booz was like, 'I was getting ready to go over there and beat this little man down.' And dude was just like, 'Here, Boozer, here is a little check for about a million, it'll take care of everything, get it back the way you want it.' And Booz was like, 'This little man is cool as hell.'"

In fact, Boozer seemed to have no hard feelings, telling the Tribune, "I was kind of worried about that when I saw the house. But Prince was great. I had a conversation with him. He changed everything back the way it was before he moved out."

Boozer said he had signed a nondisclosure agreement not to talk about specifics.

"He knows how to live," Boozer said. "I'll put it that way."

Outside Minnesota

Other than his notable brush with a baller, Prince's forays into real estate outside Minnesota were fairly limited. He once owned a home in Beverly Hills, which he sold in 1997 for $2.2 million, according to the Los Angeles Times.

He also bought a home in southern Spain in 1998 as a wedding gift for his first wife, Mayte Garcia, according to the New York Times.

Prince's additions to the property included a professional hair salon, a basement music studio, and, in the bedroom, a ceiling mirror above the bed and a mural of the couple walking hand in hand into a desert sunset, the Times reported.

The couple divorced in 2000, and Garcia sold the home in 2004. A 2009 listing video showed a portrait of the then-happy couple in a stairwell.

In 2001, Prince married the Toronto-born Manuela Testolini and bought a gorgeous estate in the Canadian city for $5.5 million. The couple divorced in 2006.

Bringing it all back home

A quick search of property records shows that a person named Prince R. Nelson is currently listed as the owner of seven pieces of property in Minnesota -- four in Chanhassen, two in Minneapolis, and a single property in Excelsior, MN.

The uses for these various residences remain a mystery, which is probably exactly how Prince liked it.