Each week we look at the most expensive MLS-listed house in each state.
The most expensive home in a state not known for extravagant real estate sits on the Gulf of Mexico. At $12.5 million, Mississippi's priciest listing is nearly double the price of its nearest competitor in the Magnolia State.
Located in Pass Christian, the gargantuan 25,000-square-foot home sits right across Highway 90 from the warm waters of the Gulf.
Agent Liz Hanson said the mansion is an example of "beautiful style" and gave us the scoop on how the huge home came to be.
Hanson said the original structure was built in 1963 for financier J. Edgar Monroe, who wanted a winter home to emulate his Gatsby-esque mansion in Newport, RI. The agent said the old-money vibe was apparent in the 11,000-square-foot house built in the early '60s, but the story (and the home) took a detour in the early '90s.
In 1993, Charles Ramsey purchased the home and then dramatically expanded it. He had a large family and wanted to create a compound on the Gulf, she said. He added two enormous wings and almost tripled the square footage.
The result is a 15-bedroom, 19-bathroom home on almost 8 acres, said Hanson, adding that it feels like two separate houses. The main house is all original and "very pretty." The home's library has rich wood paneling, and the fireplace mantel is from Italy.
However, the additions made in the '90s are more contemporary than the original design, Hanson said. "The style of the additions is not up to the style of the original."
That said, the home offers possibilities for the right buyer. Hanson joked about her hope of the " Duck Dynasty" family expressing interest, but she said a more realistic outcome is a buyer who will use the home as a convention center, corporate retreat, or facility for the nearby University of Southern Mississippi.
The Gulf also offers plenty of sailing and fishing opportunities, and there's a harbor close to the mansion.
The coastal area is a popular place for Southerners to have second homes -- New Orleans is just over an hour away! -- though the sheer size of this home makes it a daunting proposition to keep as a simple weekend getaway.
We asked Hanson about the possibility of turning the place into a bed-and-breakfast beyond compare, but she said getting local approvals to turn the home into a commercial enterprise would be arduous. However, she said, "The mayor might encourage it. After all, think of the tax revenue."
Whether it becomes the biggest B&B in Mississippi or the home of a Biloxi casino magnate, we're curious about the third incarnation of the state's most expensive dwelling.