CORONADO: Speckels Mansion to be sold
(CNS) – The historic Coronado mansion, which is tied to two
mysterious deaths in 2011, is to be sold, it was reported this week.
The Spreckels Mansion is expected to be listed within the next four to
six weeks for the asking price of $16.9 million, real estate broker Scott
Aurich of Pacific Sotheby's International Realty told U-T San Diego.
In July 2011, millionaire Jonah Shacknai's 6-year-old son, Max, was
severely injured in a second-story fall while under the supervision of
Shacknai's girlfriend, Rebecca Zahau. Two days later, while Max remained
hospitalized, Zahau was found bound and hanging from the mansion's balcony.
Authorities ruled her death a suicide.
Max was pronounced dead in a San Diego hospital five days after his fall.
Shacknai's ex-wife and Max's mother, Dina Shacknai, has publicly
questioned authorities' assertion that Max's death was an accident. She
formally requested the investigation into Max's death be reopened, but
authorities denied the request.
Following the deaths, Jonah Shacknai, CEO and founder of Medicis
Pharmaceutical Corp. in Arizona, entered a deal with a group of investors to
renovate the 12,750-square-foot house for resale. The terms of that deal were
Aurich told U-T San Diego the recently completed renovations include a
new roof on the main house, exterior paint, refurbished wood flooring and
upgrades to several rooms, including the master bedroom and kitchen.
Shacknai bought the 10-bedroom, 9.5 bath Spreckels Mansion in March 2007
for $12.75 million, the newspaper reported.
The mansion was built more than 100 years ago by architect Harrison
Albright for San Diego luminary John D. Spreckels. It includes a main house and
two auxiliary residences.
The power-broker industrialist, who made his initial fortune in shipping
and sugar refineries, moved to Coronado with his family in 1908 and was known
as the wealthiest man in the San Diego area in the early 20th century.
At various times, Spreckels, who died in 1926 at age 72, owned the Hotel
Del Coronado, all of North Island, the San Diego-Coronado Ferry System, Union-
Tribune Publishing Co., San Diego & Arizona Railway, and Belmont Park in
Spreckels also built several notable downtown buildings, including the
Union Building in 1908, the Spreckels Theatre in 1913, the San Diego Hotel and
the Golden West Hotel.