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Top 10 Most Expensive Houses in the World


5
Dracula's Castle
Bran Castle was the principal home of Queen Marie whose grandson Dominic Habsburg had the castle returned in 2006 by the Romanian government after the fall of Communism. In 2007 he put it up for sale.  So far, no takers. Wojtek Laski/Getty Images
Bran Castle was the principal home of Queen Marie whose grandson Dominic Habsburg had the castle returned in 2006 by the Romanian government after the fall of Communism. In 2007 he put it up for sale. So far, no takers. Wojtek Laski/Getty Images

Thanks to Vlad Tepes (better known as Vlad the Impaler, or Count Dracula), Bran Castle -- built on 20 acres of a mountaintop in Brasov, Romania -- became a museum in the 1980s. Legend has it the cruel count spent all of one night there. In 2007, the castle's current owner, Archduke Dominic Habsburg, offered to sell the macabre museum to the Romanian government for $80 million, but the offer was rejected. Soon after, he announced that he would sell the castle in 2009 for an undisclosed price, although real estate experts projected a ballpark figure of $135 million [source: Associated Press]. So far, no takers.

The castle was built in the late 14th century as a fortress to ward off invading Turks [source: Bran Castle Museum]. The Habsburgs, Romania's royal family, moved in in the 1920s. The castle boasts 57 rooms, including 17 bedrooms, decorated with handcrafted Old World antiques and furniture [source: Wright]. Even if you don't have the $135 million to buy Dracula's former haunt, you can visit Bran Castle for only 25 Romanian lei (about U.S. $8) [source: Bran Castle Museum]. A photo fee is included, so don't forget your novelty vampire teeth.

The 19th century villa on the next page has come a long way from its former status as a girl's prep school.