Jackie Siegel Reveals How Her Late Daughter Is Inspiring Her Plans For Versailles - Exclusive

It's normal for new-home construction projects to experience delays and changes. It's less normal, however, for a home construction projection to be abruptly halted, then put on hold for over a decade. And it's far, far from normal for that long-delayed single-family home to be a 90,000-square-foot palace with multiple kitchens and its own helicopter pad. But for Jackie Siegel and her husband, Westgate Resorts founder David Siegel, the epic estate — which they've dubbed Versailles — is home. Or it will be, once it's finally completed; the new Discovery show, "Queen of Versailles Reigns Again," follows Jackie Siegel as she oversees the final stretch of the home's construction.


But for Siegel, finishing Versailles doesn't just mean picking up where she left off when the project was suspended in 2008. A lot has changed for the Siegel family since then, and this meant the plans for the home changed too. Their children are now young adults whose idea of a dream home has changed since their childhood. And the loss of the Siegels' 18-year-old daughter Victoria to an opioid overdose in 2015 shattered their world.

"With all the money in the world, we couldn't bring her back to life," Siegel said. But she was determined to ensure her daughter did not die in vain. Along with launching a foundation, Victoria's Voice, to combat unhealthy opioid use, Siegel plans to use Versailles to promote wellness and awareness of substance use issues. In an exclusive interview with the List, she shared some of her plans.


If you or anyone you know is struggling with addiction issues, help is available. Visit the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration website or contact SAMHSA's National Helpline at 1-800-662-HELP (4357).

Jackie Siegel sees Versailles as a tool for promoting opioid awareness

The Siegels resumed construction of Versailles in 2015 and had no reason to believe construction would be delayed again. But then the unthinkable happened — Victoria Siegel suddenly died. No one in the family had any idea she was using opioids, which made her death even more devastating to the family. Suddenly, Versailles didn't feel like such an important priority anymore. "It wasn't fulfilling to be building this house," Jackie Siegel said. "It was really a traumatic time for the two of us."


But as she came to spend more of her time learning about and educating others about the dangers of opioids, Jackie Siegel realized Versailles could be an effective, high-profile platform from which to promote opioid awareness. "Unfortunately, since my daughter passed away, the drug epidemic has gotten even worse," she said. "That's another reason we decided to finish Versailles. We're back on track even more fast paced, because I really feel that since Versailles already has the fame — it's already in Wikipedia — I can use the house as a tool to bring out the awareness about the drug epidemic and saving lives through our foundation."

She plans to open Versailles for wellness and sobriety-related retreats

Another way Jackie Siegel wants to honor her daughter's memory is by opening her home to groups promoting wellness and sobriety or seeking healthful retreats. "We're also going to be doing things in our house. I'm going to be doing retreats, since I have a 10,000-square foot house spa in the house, healthy retreats," she said. "Through Victoria's Voice, I've made connections with people that are reaching out for help. They want to stay drug-free and alcohol-free, substance-abuse free. I want to do retreats at Versailles that they can come in and have their committee meetings or mini conventions and stuff, and have a safe place to be."


But substance-free won't mean luxury-free. Guests will still enjoy a decadent experience at Versailles. "I've got a yoga room, like a Zen garden. We've got massage and facials and a wet room, a self-tanning booth," Siegel said. "[We've got] the indoor swimming pool [and] outdoor swimming pool. It's really going to be a retreat, like a spa. We've got a grotto with three jacuzzis, but it's all one huge thing." In addition, she said, the home has its own dance club as well as a one-mile nature trail and a lake for boating.

"Queen of Versailles Reigns Again" is now streaming on Discovery+.