Margolin Properties On Market
Sydney Morning Herald
Monday May 21, 1990
Entrepreneur Emmanuel Margolin - one of Sydney's liveliest characters - is selling his two NSW tourist attractions.
Notre Dame at Mulgoa - described by the selling agents as "the best house in the world" - and El Caballo Blanco at Camden - the home of the Andalusian Dancing Stallions - are to be sold by tender.
"I am to have open heart surgery - I should not be taking any more stress,"said Mr Margolin, who is contemplating retiring to the Gold Coast.
Both Notre Dame and El Caballo Blanco have been closed since early this year.
"They are two magnificent properties - I am very sad to be selling," Mr Margolin said.
Notre Dame - featured in 1988 in the TV show Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous - is set on 42 hectares. It has recent Land and Environment Court permission to operate as a zoo for animals other than lions.
In a lengthy list, Penrith City Council objected to Notre Dame's "exotic and stylistically alien landscape and theatrical elements".
Mr Margolin said he had become anxious because of the extensive court action.
"I won every court case, but the legal expenses were more than $1 million. And the court cases cost me my health," he said.
Chesterton's Mr Alan Spencer and Richardson and Wrench's Mr Les Pritchard are the joint agents for the tender sale, which closes on July 27.
Notre Dame's features include an equestrian arena, sports centre, tropical rainforest and a private zoo plus an antelope and deer farm. The grounds, which are lit by more than 2,800 fairy lights, include waterfalls, fountains, a Japanese garden and Shinto shrine along with a manager's residence, stables, tennis court and pavilion and various restaurants and a gift shop. The house has a roof-top helipad.
El Caballo Blanco, with its dancing horses, is among the country's best known tourist destinations. It has a Spanish-style pavilion housing a restaurant, nightclub and equestrian arena with seating for hundreds of viewers. Also on the property are a go-kart track, shooting gallery, sheep shearing centre, boating and canoeing lake, waterslides and various eating areas. There are generous stabling and training facilities, and accommodation ranges from a nine-bedroom house with an indoor pool to more modest staff housing.
Mr Margolin - a former Melbourne car salesman - paid about $4 million for El Caballo Blanco early last year after the property had been on the market for almost two years.