Retired Skater Michelle Kwan Lands Buyer for $4M Mansion in Rhode Island

    Nicholas Hunt/Getty Images;

    Olympic medalist Michelle Kwan has landed a buyer for the historic mansion in Newport, RI, that she picked up in her surprise divorce last year from husband Clay Pell.

    The couple were married in 2013, and together bought the 1900s-era house the following year for $1.5 million. They planned to renovate it from top to bottom, with the goal of eventually moving in together, according to news reports at the time. Pell is the son of a U.S. senator from Rhode Island, and unsuccessfully ran for state governor in 2014.

    But the couple’s relationship soured, and in early 2017, Pell surprised Kwan by announcing on Twitter that he had filed for divorce. She ultimately won the house in the divorce, putting it on the market in September 2017 for $4.4 million. Nearly a year later, Kwan found a buyer, selling the house for $4 million.


    The four-bedroom, six-bath, Palladian-style home sits on nearly 2 acres in a wealthy neighborhood near the Newport Country Club. At the time they bought it, the home was dripping in marble, gold leaf accents, and Italian-inspired cherubs, busts, and other statues both inside and outside.

    Kwan and Pell stripped the house down to its essence, removing the over-the-top, ornate details.

    The home’s foyer originally had carpeted stairs, twin decorative urns flanking the staircase, and a cherub at the landing. There was decorative woodwork, twin chandeliers, and what appeared to be glass doors with decorative ironwork. The pair ripped out virtually everything decorative in the foyer, save for the home’s original woodwork.

    New foyer

    Original foyer
    Original foyer

    They renovated the kitchen with a neutral color palette (it used to have emerald-green formica countertops), and put in industrial-style appliances.


    It looks like some of the home’s original design choices remained—including a floor-to-ceiling black marble bathroom and a salmon-and-white marble bathroom elsewhere.

    Black marble bathroom
    Black marble bathroom

    Marble bathroom
    Another marble bathroom

    Outside, there’s a pool, fire pit, pond, and multiple seating areas.


    Aerial view

    Kwan, 38, remains one of the greatest figure skaters in modern American history, winning silver at the 1998 Olympics and bronze in 2002. She’s a five-time World champion and nine-time U.S. champion.

    After retiring in 2006, Kwan became active in politics, serving as a public diplomacy ambassador for President George W. Bush, and later, in a similar role, for President Barack Obama. During the 2016 presidential election, Kwan supported Hillary Clinton, volunteering for the campaign from Clinton’s headquarters in Brooklyn.

    The post Retired Skater Michelle Kwan Lands Buyer for $4M Mansion in Rhode Island appeared first on Real Estate News & Insights |®.

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