Bill Gates Buys $171 Million Roman Palazzo From The 17th Century

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Along with the help of a Saudi prince, the billionaire has big plans for the historic building.

Bill Gates just made a huge investment in a Roman Palazzo from the 17th century – a $170 million one. According to reports, the billionaire has teamed up with Saudi Arabia’s Prince Alwaleed bin Talal to invest in the historic property.

As per Luxury Launches, the Microsoft founder has partnered with the prince’s company Cascade Investment LLC in hopes of turning the palazzo into a six-star Four Seasons Hotel. This will be Rome’s first six-star hotel.

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The newly purchased building is Palazzo Marini, which was constructed in the 17th century. It was originally started (but not completed) by Gian Lorenzo Bernini in 1650, and house many important Italian figures over the centuries, including nobility.

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Covering four separate blocks and is only steps away from famous landmarks, such as the Trevi Fountain and the Spanish Steps.

The Four Seasons have reportedly set aside $120 million in order to renovate the building into a luxury hotel, which will feature over 100 rooms and amenities like conference rooms, a gym, and a spa.

The palazzo currently has a variety of uses. Daily Beast notes that its lower flow is a “pop-up Ikea shop” that sells cheap home wear to locals, while the upper floors act as a canteen for the lower house of parliament.

Gates hasn’t paid the full price yet, though he’s apparently put down a $21 million down payment alongside the Four Seasons and the Saudi prince.


Up until recently, Gates had his eyes set on a different Italian hotel – the Danieli hotel in Venice. Along with Prince Alwaleed bin Talal, the businessman was hoping to transform the Venician hotel from a Marriot Luxury Collection hotel to a Four Seasons by 2024.

However, the duo received criticism when they hired French designer Pierre-Yves Rochon to spearhead the project rather than using an Italian designer. With over 70% residential property in Venice owned by foreign investors, the thought of one of the city’s oldest hotels being under American, Saudi, and French control was ridiculed.


In January, however, it was confirmed Giuseppe Statuto Group would retain ownership of the hotel after securing a €330 million. They also plan to carry out €30 million worth of renovations, which they say will be led by an Italian designer.

There’s no word on when renovations on Gates’ new hotel will begin, but with such a generous budget, the historic building is sure to see a major upgrade.

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Sources: Luxury Launches, Daily Beast, Daily Beast,

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