Everyone knows about Yves Saint Laurent being one of those celebrities that came to Marrakesh, but there is another member of a famous family, Tolstoys, who left his footprint in Marrakesh, built a house.
This story caught my interest as it is all mystery to me. All the sources in English language say that the villa was built for Olga, Leo Tolstoy’s daughter. This is what was written in Wikipedia (which I tried change to “relative”, but it is back with “daughter”). The fact is Leo Tolstoy never had a daughter named Olga!
In fact, his son Mikhail, after getting in financial difficulties in emmigration in Paris, moved with his family to Morocco, where they bought land in Sidi Bettache, and where he started writing his novel and died in 1944. His son Sergey, who married Olga Vyrubova in Paris, also moved to Morocco and bought a land nearby on her inheritance money. This was around 1938. Here he writes about his memories of that time and of his father. Could this be the land, where he and his wife build this villa?
I wish I could find out!
And shame on Le Figaro, Financial Times and Sotheby’s for this misleading information.
Photo Credit: habituallychic.luxury
So, back to the villa with a mysterious owner. It was called Aïn Kassimou, meaning “the source” a villa in the area of 12 hectares of land, which hosted only very prestigious occupants. The villa was then sold to Barbara Hutton, a wealthy American, married five times, notably to Cary Grant and Prince Igor Troubetzkoy (Le Figaro).
Photo Credit: habituallychic.luxury
Patrick Guerrand-Hermès engaged in the reconstruction of  villa Aïn Kassimou in the 1984, when he bought it as a surprise for his wife Martine Borgeaud and their children. The villa  was used to exhibit his notable art collection. He then resold his villa to Marella Agnelli, who hired architect Bill Willis and landscape designer Madison Cox to build the pool and create the beautiful lake full of water lilies.
Photo Credit: habituallychic.luxury
Today, Aïn Kassimou is a part of Palmarie Polo Club, and a collection of art belonging to is exhibited there.

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