A house has just gone on the market at 3390 The Crescent in Shaughnessy for $31.9 million. That may sound like a lot of money, but it isn’t the highest listing price in Metro Vancouver — a house at 2190 Camelot in West Vancouver is for sale at $39.9 million. And has been, for several months.

High-end homes like this often take a while to sell, because once you get into the tens of millions, there aren’t many buyers. In fact, the $31.9-million Shaughnessy home was for sale last year for $17.9 million, but didn’t sell.

Property records list the owners as K. Fan Hiu and H.F. Chi, who purchased the home in April 2004 for $6 million. Ted Wang of Royal Pacific Realty said the couple have decided to downsize to an apartment.

Wang said the owners decided to raise the listing price after looking at the high prices mansions are commanding in Shaughnessy. He noted that a house he sold last year on Angus Drive for $5.7 million was recently assessed at $9 million.

The Crescent is the heart of Shaughnessy, a circular street of blueblood dreams with a lovely park in the middle. The Hiu-Chi house will be familiar to Vancouverites who know Shaughnessy: it’s that palatial white house where The Crescent meets Osler Street.

The house definitely has some selling points. It’s big, with 10,516 sq. ft of space spread over three storeys. There are six bedrooms, eight bathrooms and five fireplaces, along with a wine cellar, a games room, a gym and staff quarters.

Naturally, there is a “grand entry, sweeping staircase, massive living room, separate formal dining room, library, coffered ceilings, crown mouldings, panelled den, [and a] gourmet kitchen.”

Oh, and there’s a backyard pool, a koi pond, a greenhouse, and large, beautifully landscaped grounds; the home is on an acre lot.

It was designed in the Beaus Arts style in 1920 for a Russian émigré named Misak Aivazoff, who dubbed it Villa Russe and entertained fellow Russians like Grand Duke Alexander and Serge Rachmaninoff there.

Aivazoff had made a fortune in construction, but sold the house during the depression to H.A. Wallace of Burrard Dry Dock. The house was also owned by Dal Grauer, president of BC Electric, the private company that W.A.C. Bennett nationalized and turned into BC Hydro.

Realtor Wang wouldn’t speculate on who would be interested in a mansion at this price, but he did say he would be advertising it on websites in China.

Rudy Nielsen of Landcor Data Corporation tracks property sales, and says the top price paid for a house in British Columbia to date is $28,166,390 for 3330 Radcliffe in West Vancouver in 2008.

A penthouse at 1011 Cordova in Vancouver sold for $17,571,125 in 2010, slightly more than the $17.5 million paid for 3489 Osler in Shaughnessy the same year.

Landcor’s top-10 sales between 2008 and 2010 also include $16.8 million for 4791 Belmont in Vancouver, $15.2 million for 4716 Belmont, and $15 million for 18818-28th Ave. in Surrey. A house at 2924 Rosebery in West Vancouver sold for $14,158,095 in 2009, the same year a penthouse at 1128 West Georgia sold for $13,358,174.

The top 10 is rounded out by two more Shaughnessy homes at 3590 Osler ($13.1 million) and 1488 Laurier ($12,868,200), which sold this year.

There are 46 listings in Metro Vancouver on the Multiple Listing Service for $10 million or more.

Twenty-one are in Vancouver, 19 in West Vancouver, two in North Vancouver, and one each in Richmond, Surrey, Burnaby and Langley.

The most expensive condo is the penthouse at 1011 West Cordova, which has been put back on the market for $28.8 million — $11 million more than it sold for last year.

There are six more Shaughnessy mansions for sale for north of $10 million, including a 10-bedroom house at 1398 The Crescent for $23.998 million.