Former “Chocolate City” Mayor Puts his New Orleans home up for Sale

10 Nov

Former Mayor Ray Nagin has put his Park Island home up for sale, causing a flurry of speculation about whether the city’s former chief executive is planning to pull up stakes. According to, Nagin declined to answer questions from the media Tuesday about the $729,000 listing or his reasons for putting the house on the market.


Designed by architect Albert Ledner, the 3,600-square-foot, midcentury modern home is known as “the ashtray house” because the exterior stucco is dotted with hundreds of amber glass ashtrays.

According to the Rutter Realty listing, the house has four bedrooms, three baths and an in-ground pool. It is located about a block away from City Park, “home of a future PGA golf course.”

The house “is truly a New Orleans landmark,” Rutter Realty says.

Nagin did not respond to emails from The Times-Picayune asking whether he intends to stay in New Orleans.

Nagin’s wife, Seletha, has family in the Dallas area, and shortly after Hurricane Katrina, the Nagin family began renting a townhouse in the Dallas suburb of Frisco. In 2007, the Nagins bought the place, which the mayor called “a personal investment” and “like a second hurricane home.”

About 3 p.m. Tuesday, Nagin tweeted a link to a story posted  about his home being listed for sale, but he did not elaborate on why he’s selling it.

Nagin paid $345,000 for the house in 1998, records show. If he gets his listed sale price, his net worth could increase by almost a half million dollars.

Nagin’s house is one of about two dozen in the enclave, a small island surrounded by Bayou St. John and connected to the rest of the city by a short bridge.

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