John Russell Patrick’s fully automated home, once listed for $4 million, will go under the hammer, without reserve, on July 28
The 6,800-square-foot mansion in Ridgefield, Connecticut, features fully integrated home automation, which Mr. Patrick helped design from scratch. Platinum Luxury Auctions is overseeing the auction.
Mr. Patrick, 72, is a founding sponsor of the World Wide Web Consortium at MIT in 1994, where he was heavily involved with discussions about the birth and subsequent growth of the internet. As tech-savvy as they come, Mr. Patrick channeled his technological shrewdness into the construction of his brilliant home, equipped with a uniquely sophisticated system. Platinum Luxury Auctions produced a video that highlights the home’s impressive features.
Mr. Patrick, who authored the book “Home Attitude: Everything You Need to Know to Make Your Home Smart” and worked for IBM for 39 years, is an expert in home automation.
Mr. Patrick noted that his home’s smart technology offers state-of-the-art energy conservation, home security, and convenience. “I wanted technologically advanced features and infrastructure in the home that would last for decades,” Mr. Patrick told Mansion Global.
“There are miles and miles of hidden network cables,” Mr. Patrick said, explaining the complex inner-workings of such a unique home.
According to a news release, the system is controlled through one-touch, wall-mounted digital panels placed throughout the home. “From these stations, everything from the garage doors to the waterfall in the seven-seat spa can be controlled with a fingertip, and sensors have been strategically placed to trigger customized commands in the event of snow, rain, or the arrival of dinner guests.”
The unconventional innovator that he is, it is unsurprising that Mr. Patrick grew impatient with the traditional “wait-and-see” method of listing real estate on the market and hoping someone bites. After listing and relisting his home over 10 times since 2013, he chose to auction his fully-automated home live, without reserve, in late July. The home was last listed in April for just under $2 million.
The home, once listed for $4 million, will soon be at the mercy of a live auction.
“It’s going to be up to the bidders,” Mr. Patrick said, acknowledging the risk associated with a live auction model. “But doing nothing is a risk, too. I savor this approach, it’s more likely to get results.”
Plus, he added, “we are very optimistic about the approach we are taking,” referencing internet traffic on the real estate listing site Zillow, direct email inquiries, and views on the auctioneer’s professional video.
The home, although exceptionally smart, is quite beautiful, too, but Mr. Patrick conceded, “My wife had more to with that than I did.”
According to the listing, the residence offers custom mill work, arched panel doors, and hardwood floors.
In 2002, when Mr. Patrick completed the home, the property received considerable attention in the media, according to Mr. Patrick. Once featured on Businessweek TV, the home includes a 60-foot koi pond, an in-ground spa with a waterfall, gardens, a gazebo, and an office with custom South African mahogany.
The home will be auctioned on July 28, but, as the auction approaches, Mr. Patrick expects substantial feedback from bidders.
View full article and photos here.