Dean Gardens Today
5100 Old Alabama Road, Johns Creek, Georgia, United States
Finished in 1992, Dean Gardens was once one of America’s most spectacular private homes. Over the span of four years, several hundred construction workers, artisans, landscape professionals and supervisors all worked together to create an estate that was truly a work of art. The estate included 60 acres of rolling, open and wooded land, with the crown jewels being the 32,000 square foot main house, the 10,000 square foot carriage house, the 18-hole, par-72 private golf course, and the extensive formal gardens with numerous water fountains, and a conservatory. Previously listed as high as $40 million, Dean Gardens eventually sold to Tyler Perry in late 2010 for just $7.6 million, a fraction of the $35 million appraised value. Seen above on Google Streetview, you’ll notice two of the grand columns & the antique front doors from the rotunda entry have been removed. The fountain, which once served as the focal point of the driveway, has also been removed.
Perry purchased the property with no intention of actually living there, but instead he planned on tearing it down and building his dream mansion. Shortly after the sale an estate auction was held at the property with everything and anything available for purchase. Buyers came from around the world to take advantage of bargains on antique doors, custom millwork, hand carved fireplace mantels, and ornate crystal chandeliers. Below, a comparison of what the rear of the mansion previously looked like, and what it looks like now. The copper railings and leaded glass doors have been stripped and removed.
Nearly all the interiors have been ripped apart and left in disrepair for over 2 years now. A rear view of the estate shows the extensive formal gardens, the swimming pool & hot tub filled with bacteria, and a large black rectangle on the lawn beside the lake. Tyler Perry has a strong interest in R/C planes and it’s rumoured he visits the 60 acre property to fly them, so we can only assume that he added it as a landing strip.
In October 2011, Forbes released an article titled ‘America’s Doomed Mansions‘ which noted that in September 2011, Perry received a demolition permit to bulldoze the main house, the chapel, pavilion, cottage, tennis cabana, conservatory, tea house, amphitheatre, a maintenance building, pump house, and to level the parking area and pathways. Demolition was estimated to cost around $100,000. Nothing has progressed since that time, and while the estate is actually looking pretty good from the sky, we know the interiors haven’t fared very well. It’s unknown as to when Tyler Perry will go ahead with his plans of fully demolishing this extraordinary estate, perhaps he’ll have a change of heart and renovate it to his liking. Nobody knows, and we continue waiting to see his next move.