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Versailles, the Would-Be Biggest House in America

David and Jackie Siegel were building their 90,000-square-foot dream house, a little place they named after a French palace. Then the recession hit
David and Jackie Siegel in their dream house, which is 60 percent complete
David and Jackie Siegel in their dream house, which is 60 percent completePhotograph by Martha Camarillo

“Our house is like a convention center compared to the other houses here,” says David Siegel as he drives through The Reserve at Lake Butler Sound, a gated community in Orlando. The other houses here are not small: They average 10,000 square feet. But his home will be nine times as large. Siegel stops at the end of Kirkstone Lane, pulls into his driveway, and looks around. “Next door is a 12,000-square-foot house. That could be my maid’s quarters one day,” he says lightly. Then he catches himself and adds, “No, I shouldn’t say that, it sounds like an insult.”

David and Jackie Siegel’s dream house sits on 10 acres of lakefront property. Built on a custom-made hill, it occupies one full acre and, when finished, will be the largest home in the country. David, the founder and chief executive officer of the biggest private time-share company in the world, Westgate Resorts, designed it. He and Jackie named it Versailles.