$100,000 Chicken Coop: What the Cluck?

October 24, 2013 by

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“Dawn breaks. The hens descend from their bespoke Versailles-inspired Le Petit Trianon house to their playground below for a morning wing stretch. Slipping on your wellies, you start for the coop and are greeted by the pleasant clucking of your specially chosen flock and the site of the poshest hen house ever imagined.”

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“Your custom-made multilevel dwelling features a nesting area, a “living room” for nighttime roosting, a broody room, a library filled with chicken and gardening books for visitors of the human kind, and, of course, an elegant chandelier.”

You’ve just read the description of the Heritage Hen Mini Farm, aka Beau Coop, a $100,000 multi-level chicken coop featured in the Neiman Marcus Christmas catalog.

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Pricey? You betcha, but the coop comes with extras: two raised beds for growing (or having your staff grow) vegetables and herbs–and an initial farm consultation, grounds survey, plus two additional onsite visits from Heritage Hen Farm expert, Svetlana Simon who will hold the buyer’s hand throughout the orientation process.

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I’ll Take My Feed in the Library Please
The coop de grace? A library filled with chicken and gardening books. Hens don’t read, so these are for the education of the newbie farmer, whom I suspect will not be interested in the nuances of chicken husbandry. And since chickens and their coops require a fair amount of regular care, looks like the future coop owner will have to hire a chicken tender (grin.)

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Delivery is not included, but chickens are. Simon will carefully select three to ten heritage-breed hens suited to the buyer’s region to roost in the fanciful residence. And there is a socially-conscious do-good element to this fantasy coop:  for every Heritage Hen Mini Farm purchase, Neiman Marcus will donate $3,000 to The American Livestock Breeds Conservancy, a nonprofit organization that protects genetic diversity through the conservation and promotion of endangered breeds.

Higher in the Pecking Order
Move over Heritage Hen Mini Farm: English tycoon Crispin Odey has already one-upped the NM coop by commissioning a £150,000 ($243,000) hen house the size of a two-bedroom flat.

Crispin Odey in the rural village of English Bicknor in the Forest of Dean, Gloucestershire
Photo from The Daily Mail

This coop de résistance was hatched as an addition to the tycoon’s sprawling Eastbach Court estate pictured below. It’s conceived as a temple in the trees, complete with sculptures and hand-carved stone columns. Designed by London architect Christopher Smallwood, the Greek-style residence is adorned with anthemion ornaments, a cornice, pediment and frieze.

£150,000 chicken coop will be added to the sprawling Eastbach Court estate
Photo from The Daily Mail

No secret I’m brooding about this fowl indulgence. And thinking about what else could be done with $100,000 makes me wonder if Neiman Marcus should add psychotherapy to the package.

Unless otherwise noted, photos courtesy of Neiman Marcus.

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