R. Kelly famously came up from the rough and tumble public housing developments of Chicago’s South Side to become a huge R&B star, but judging from the rehab. job on his former Lake View crib which reportedly sold for $2.5 million in October it’s true what they say: money can’t buy taste.
Kelly converted what was a red-brick Gothic-style church (built in 1885) on West George Street into a party pad about 10 years ago.
He stuck a white, plywood-looking penthouse atop the house of worship to serve as his bedroom. The house comes complete with a home theater room, indoor lap pool, basketball court and recording studio. “It was like Miami Vice crashed into a cruise ship,” one Chicago real-estate type says. Our advice? Burn It Up!
Kelly, of course, is currently pleading not guilty to child pornography charges stemming from a video that prosecutors allege was filmed in the home’s Colorado Room, the wood-panelled basement.
Kelly put the house on the market and it was bought by a market trader. When the trader decided to sell, the 10,000-square-foot home sat on the market for three years until Sussex and Reilly‘s Rob Keleghan sold it to a music industry-type last October, Keleghan tells us.
The building sticks out in an otherwise unassuming neighborhood of wooden-frame homes, brick two-flats in varying conditions and low-key shops. Neighbors who have toured the place tell us it has strikingly modern interiors, with stark white walls, blond wood floors, “bedrooms everywhere”, a beautiful marble bathroom, hot tub, computer-controlled blinds and lights and a couple of bars. “It’s pretty cool inside,” one neighbor tells us.
That may well be, but we still think the exterior constitutes a crime against architecture.