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from NY Daily News

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It’s a castle fit for the Queen of Hip Hop.

Grammy winner Mary J. Blige plunked down $12.3 million in cash for a Saddle River, N.J., mansion, the Daily News has learned.

“She fell in love with this one,” a source said of Blige, who checked out several houses in the swanky area before settling on the 18,250-square-foot dream pad.

Thanks to the sagging housing market, the 37-year-old best-selling singer got a relative bargain.

The house originally went on the market last year for $17 million and was reduced this year to $13.9 million, the source said.

Blige, who has sold more than 40 million records, will have plenty of hip-hop stars, rappers, movie stars and pro athletes as neighbors.

Rappers Ja Rule, Wyclef Jean and the Rev. Run of Run-DMC live nearby.

Other boldface names calling Saddle River home include Nets’ hoop star Vince Carter, actor Danny Aiello and novelist Mary Higgins Clark.

Blige’s newly constructed eight-bedroom house – built on 4.2 acres and modeled after a French country manor – features a 14-seat movie theater, a fitness center, a hardwood basketball court and an elevator.

It also has a gourmet kitchen, eight bathrooms, a spiral staircase and a wine tasting room.

Real Estate broker Dennis McCormack, who sold the property, denied knowing who bought it.

McCormack’s competitors said the sale to Blige was the talk of the tony town.

“Everybody knows Mary J. Blige bought the house,” the source said. “He [McCormack] may have signed a confidentiality agreement, but the buzz was out the minute she and her husband saw the house.”

Blige and her husband, record-industry executive Kendu Isaacs, are not expected to move in anytime soon.

She is in the middle of her 25-arena Heart of the City tour with Jay-Z. Tonight she plays the Nassau Coliseum and tomorrow she’s at the Izod Center.

Sources said the couple plans to personalize the landscaping, boost security and possibly revamp a few garages to accommodate her tour bus.

Here’s a look at Mary J. Blige’s $12.3M estate:

  • 8 bedrooms
  • 8 bathrooms
  • 18,250 square feet
  • 14-seat movie theater
  • Hardwood basketball court
  • Wine tasting room
  • In-ground pool
  • Elevator
  • Gourmet kitchen
  • Spiral staircase
  • Fitness center
  • Six-car garage
  • Miss NJ:  Is it just me or do all of these huge mansions look basically the same?  When Cribs first premiered I loved it.  But over time it became obvious that people just got whatever cost the most and there was no real interior design idea behind anything.  It’s easy to fill a house with expensive toys.  Interior design/decorating is something more.

    BK Diva:  Hopefully Mary & her husband will hire a decorator and get rid of all that crap and do something tasteful & classy.  Less is more people you don’t have to shove a bunch of ish in your house to show you have money.

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