Luxury homes for sale: Such a deal!


Pity the poor celebrity whose umpteen-square-foot manse on a property large enough to house a small municipality just won't sell. Or it's unloaded for a song. That realty reality is unfolding on both coasts (and even the Midwest), according to a report.

Despite a hopeful uptick in existing-home sales nationwide -- they rose 10.1% in October from September and are up 23.5% from the October before, according to the National Assn. of Realtors -- some luxury landmarks with your standard twin swimming pools and a ballroom are languishing.

Who's hurting the most? Let's start with the Greenwich, Conn., estate of the late Leona "Queen of Mean" Helmsley, onetime real estate heiress and convicted felon. This 22,000-square-foot summer home on 40 acres, dubbed Dunnellen Hall (what, is it in West Sussex, England?), can't move even at a bargain-basement $60 million. Last year it was listed for $125 million. You do get a million-dollar dance floor, a 70-foot marble reflecting pool and a 1,125-square-foot living room. So what's the problem?