TODAY   |  June 25, 2010

TODAY tours Jackson’s Neverland Ranch

NBC’s Jeff Rossen takes a look around Michael Jackson’s former home, Neverland Ranch, on the one-year anniversary of his death.

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ROSSEN: And speaking of Michael 's kids, Prince, Paris and Blanket , they're actually going to be part owners, in a way. They have a stake in Neverland Ranch . It's a partnership right now between a private equity group called Colony Capital and the Jackson estate. They're in a partnership for ownership here. Right now we're in Michael Jackson 's bedroom where he lived for 20 years of his life. It's fairly large, of course, as you'd expect. Fireplace and beautiful windows with the landscape and the pond and the lake out back. And I want to show you his bathroom as well. Of course, when we go house shopping anywhere you always look at the bathroom, right? Here's Michael Jackson 's bathroom. Single vanity with a beautiful, beautiful marble granite countertop. A nice deep tub here. There's a lot of closet space . But one thing that's been talked about a lot, in fact, it got a lot of attention in 2005 during the child molestation case, was a secret closet. And by the way, we're inside Michael Jackson 's -- his bedroom closet here where he kept his clothes. This is a secret closet. It was actually designed as a panic room back when the house was made. But he would come in here and keep all of his memorabilia in here as well. Prosecutors, and we can start walking out here, would often -- it's very hot in there, actually -- would peek through there wondering what exactly was happening there. So that was a big part of the case. But Michael Jackson 's secret bedroom hideaway here at the Neverland Ranch , Natalie . And we have a lot coming up as well, but for now back to you.

MORALES: All right. Jeff Rossen , looking forward to seeing more there from Neverland . And we're going to get more of an up-close and personal tour inside the home there as Jeff pointed out where Jackson spent so much of his time. We're going to show you including the table where he often sat to look out at his animals on the ranch and the majestic kitchen, and we're also going to take you on a tour outside the home for a look at the nearly 3,000-acre property. That's all coming up right after this.

MORALES: And we're back now with more on this one-year anniversary of Michael Jackson 's death and NBC 's Jeff Rossen is at Jackson 's Neverland Ranch ready to give us more of that tour inside and outside the massive property. Jeff , good morning again.

ROSSEN: Hey, Natalie . Good morning again. Yeah, we've switched locations. We were in Michael 's bedroom on the other side of the house. By the way, that bedroom is two stories, it's two floors. We've now relocated here to the -- to the kitchen area and you can see what a beautiful, majestic kitchen it was. This is where Michael Jackson actually spent a lot of his time. In fact, they kept his original deep fryer. He loved fried chicken so much, he would make it so often, they feel like it's a relic, so they don't want to sell it. They keep that. They made sure not to get rid of it. This is the countertop where people would usually come eat, and Michael Jackson , we're told, would sit right here, would sit right up on the countertop. There was a TV mounted, he watched a lot of television. And we're told whenever he was here in the house, there would always be a fire burning. He was a huge fan of keeping a fire going in the fireplace as well. And so he loved the kitchen area, and you can't blame him because just outside of the kitchen area, as we walk outside, look at this. This is a 3,000-acre property, Neverland is, and this is just part of it. You can see this is a four-acre great lawn out this way. If you look over here, this rooftop area is a barbecue area. Basically the mother of all barbecues. We're all jealous of this. He would entertain often a lot right here. There's a sunken-in tennis court just beyond the barbecue area. There's also a pool over there as well, several pools on the property. And there are also lakes and ponds, 3,000 acres, as I mentioned. Natalie , this costs millions of dollars a year to maintain. When Michael Jackson lived here, between 1985 and 2005 , there were 120 employees. Now they're down to 30 and the future of it is unclear. Katherine Jackson has said, though, she doesn't want it sold. She wants to

keep it in the family. Natalie: All right. It's a fascinating place indeed. Jeff Rossen , thanks so much for sharing it with us.


ROSSEN: And tonight we're going to have much more on the King of Pop , including an exclusive interview with Michael 's mother, Katherine Jackson , in her only interview about her son's death. That's on a special "Dateline," Michael Jackson , A Mother 's Story, tonight at 9, 8 Central time right here on NBC . Coming up, how to save money when it comes to feeding your family. We're going to show you some healthy and inexpensive options, but first, these messages.