Unique Homes: Living It Up in Carmel, Ind.

unique homes carmel indianaCNN Money

By Jillian Anthony

It's not what most people would expect or could afford in the middle of America's heartland. But if you've got $5.5 million, you can buy a palatial movie-themed mansion in Money magazine's Best Place to Live. Hope you like "Star Wars" because this home is bringing Luke Skywalker and Darth Vader realness! See the full gallery and original post at CNNMoney.

Oh, you're a Trekkie instead? Well then, feast your eyes on this Australian "Star Trek" house inspired by the Starship Enterprise.

The Force Is Strong With This Home
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Unique Homes: Living It Up in Carmel, Ind.

Just a few miles outside of Indianapolis is a home worthy of George Lucas or perhaps a big Chicago high roller. The owners of this three-story, three-acre Carmel giant, on sale for $5.5 million, sought to build an entertainer's paradise in the affluent Queens Manor neighborhood, and they started from the ground up.

Step through the front doors into the 25,000-square-foot ballroom, frosted in marble from floor to ceiling. Drop your jacket at the electronic coat rack rotisserie and head up to the black catwalk that runs across the room. You could climb one of two staircases, but why knock yourself out when there's a glass elevator? The opulent hall (which cost $3.5 million alone) has already hosted hundreds of partygoers at soirees and fundraisers.

The lower floor of the home is a fantastical getaway for adults, with two fully stocked theme bars: one based on "Star Wars," the other on Prohibition-era Chicago. "I don't think this house is about needs," says Jimmy Dulin, the home's listing agent. "I think this house is really more about wants." The "Star Wars" bar features original prop and set pieces, as well as replicas of Darth Vader, Yoda and a carbonite-sealed Han Solo. But before you launch into hyperdrive, the racy underground of 1930s Chicago is just steps away.

Feeling lucky? Roll like a wiseguy in the Windy City while playing roulette, craps, blackjack or poker in a replica casino. Just be careful not to step on some mug's toes while on the dance floor. Artist Rick Homayer lived in the lower level for a whole year during construction to create its custom murals. The pieces are insured for $1.5 million, adding more value to the house. But since most of the artwork is too big to fit through a doorway, it's there to stay. Much of the home's furniture is also custom-made.

The cinema-buff owners built a home theater system to deliver the ultimate viewing experience. The room seats 20 people in front of a 100-inch screen. Life-size replicas of the creatures from "Alien" and "Predator" standing nearby get you even closer to the action.

Outside is a summer oasis worthy of a sultan. The 60-by-25-foot pool entices swimmers to join the mosaic-tile mermaids and crabs that line its bottom. You could entertain several hundred of your closest friends in the summer kitchen, bar area, pool, hot tub, volleyball court, and 4,000-square-foot patio.


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