After an unsuccessful attempt to be turned into a museum, Bruce Lee’s Hong Kong Mansion will be put up on sale for US$ 23 million (HK$180 million). Two-story 5,000 sq ft property, located in the posh residential district of Kowloon Tong, was the last home of kung fu legend, and after his unexpected death in 1973, it passed through several owners.
“I’m no longer considering (the museum plan) since the government is not supportive. I’m running out of patience, I don’t want to wait anymore”said the current owner”, ninety-year old property tycoon Yu Pengnian, adding that the mansion is in urgent need of renovation.
Yu bought the building in 1974 for US$1.1 million (HK$ 8.5 million) and now, he is selling the property at 21 times the buying price. Yu earned the nickname ‘Love Hotel King’, due to his investments in a short-stay hotels usually for couples. Lee’s mansion also became this kind of hotel with rooms rented out at US$25 (HK$ 194) an hour, but due to poor business, Yu has failed to pay rent for the last two years.
Accordding to Singtao Daily, Yu stated that the government refused his proposal to expand the residence by adding three floors to include a martial arts training centre, a cinema and library, which were his conditions to donate the mansion.
Lee’s fans, who have long-demanded a significant hometown tribute to the Chinese-American star, were disappointed and urged the billionaire to reconsider his plan.
“If the house is sold and re-developed or demolished later, I think the Hong Kong people and Bruce Lee fans worldwide will be very disappointed,” Wong Yiu-keung, chairman of the Bruce Lee Fan Club in Hong Kong.
“We hope the government can try to persuade Yu again,” he added.
Bruce Lee died in Hong Kong after a severe reaction to medication, at the age of 32 after helping to bring martial arts to the mainstream with classic kung fu films such as “Fists of Fury” (1971) and “Enter the Dragon” (1973).