Saturday, February 9, 2008

Peter Morton Flips Out in Malibu

SELLER: Peter Morton
LOCATION: Pacific Coast Highway, Malibu, CA
PRICE: $7,695,000
SIZE: 1,916 square feet, 4 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms
DESCRIPTION: Absolutely charming East Coat style on desirable West end of La Costa Beach. 4 bedrooms. Master with extra high ceilings and large deck. 2 other bedrooms up plus one down. Living room with bar and large kitchen all opening to a nice deck. Best deal on La Costa

YOUR MAMAS NOTES: This morning we awoke to an email from Benny Beeswax who whispered through the wires that ridiculously rich restaurateur Peter Morton was selling off an ocean front house in Malee-boo. Well Your Mama's jaw dropped and our eyes practically popped out of their sockets because we thought perhaps Mister Morton might be selling off his spectacular and newly built contemporary compound on Carbon Beach, which would likely fetch well over $25,000,000. But no. Instead, he's flipping another, less grandiose ocean front property on not quite as swanky La Costa Beach.

In case the children do not know, let Your Mama provide a brief lesson on just who this Peter Morton and his family are and why we bother to include them in our discussions. In short, the Mortons are a modern day food service dynasty. Peter Morton co-founded the once hip now impossibly mainstream Hard Rock Café (there's one in every mall in America it seems). Before that, Peter's father Arnie Morton, the real tycoon in the family, founded the world famous Morton's The Steakhouse, as well as several other high end eatery chains that are a part of the Morton's Restaurant Group. Peter's young son Harry, who among other Tinseltown starvelets used to famously date a pre-rehab Lindsay Lohan, entered the family food bizness when he founded the luridly named Pick Taco restaurants.

Property records indicate Mister Morton hasn't owned the 4 bedroom and 3 bathroom property very long having purchased it only in March of 2007. The sale price was undisclosed (or at least we could not find it), but at the time of the sale, the property was listed at $7,500,000.

If we had to guess–and we're just guessing here children, so don't any of you go yakking to yer friends about this like you know what you're talking about–we would say that Mister Morton picked up this place at a very good price, installed a few high-hats and too many yards of oatmeal carpeting, slapped on a coat of fresh paint, hired a stager on a minimal budget to bring in a few slip covered sofas, then called his real estate agent to sell this bitch off at a profit of a few hundred thousand dollars. The modestly sized house measures 1,916 square feet (as per assessor records) and has hit the market with an asking price of $7,695,000.

Naturally, we are not one iota impressed with the lackluster and uninspired interiors of Mister Morton's flip and, as the children might correctly imagine, Your Mama is of the mind that the place needs a small army of nice gay decorators to get up in there do the place all up with some new floors, a new kitchen, and a driftwood chandelier. Yes children, that's right, we said it, a driftwood chandelier.

It is too bad there isn't more deck space on the ocean side of the house, but what's there we like. Yes, the perimeter bench could be a mite precarious for all Your Mama and the Dr. Cooter's boozier guests like The Chicken and Falsetta Knockers, who we dare say will easily tipple back two or seven before dinner. But that's no real worry because our wobbly heeled Miss Knockers prefers not to be in the sea air anyway because it just fucks up her weave.

It's also too bad that the hugely vaulted ceiling in the master bedroom only gets to be enjoyed by the homeowner and with whomever they're currently fornicating. With a big enough budget, the new homeowner might wisely consider bringing the public spaces upstairs and putting the private quarters on the lower floor. Do the children have any thoughts on that?

We know some of you children are going to whine about not "getting" the appeal of Malee-boo. And some of you will piss and moan that you think it's crazy for people to pay so much money to be slammed up next to their neighbor. But Your Mama, a child of the California Coast, has no problem with beach houses being so close that one need not even leave their own property to borrow a cup of sugar or a water bong from the aging hippie neighbor.

Listen kids, like it or not, living in close proximity to your neighbors is just part of the package along the Pacific Coast Highway, as well as in many other coastal communities around the U-nited States. It's no different in Laguna Beach, La Jolla, Oxnard, Santa Barbara or even farther up the road in less glitzy Cambria and Cayucus. And unless you're talking about estate sized properties in Palm Beach, along the rugged coast of Maine, or the Eastern reaches of the hoity toity Hamptons, it's that way up and down the shorelines of Florida, along the Gulf Coast of Alabama, and even in Galveston, Texas. We don't know where you all go to the beach, but most (not all) beach communities Your Mama is familiar are chock-full of tightly packed properties lined up like shoulder to shoulder soldiers on the sand.

Don't like it? Don't live at the beach.

In addition to the for sale flip on La Costa Beach and his impressive new compound on Carbon Beach (just up the sand from billionaire David Geffen's even larger ocean front compound and next door to former Yahoo CEO Terry Semel's ocean front getaway), property records indicate Mister Morton also owns a 5,533 square foot house on Woodruff Avenue in Bev Hills, as well as another much larger and more impressive estate on N. Carolwood Drive in the western shadow of Suzanne Saperstein's $125,000,000 pile Fleur de Lys.

59 comments:

lil' gay boy said...

Obviously a newbie at flipping - shame on him for not calling in Staging Lady in her pink Prius if he was going to be so mean on the budget.

Not familiar with this area of Malibu so I don't know if it's fiscally wise to characterize this as a teardown, but architecturally, yes, please do.

I'm assuming that the right half of the photo is an adjoining property and not a completely insensitive addition; even so, there's nothing to the bones of this house that a bulldozer can't cure.

Completely lacking charm, the nicest feature of this house, the exposed ceiling in the master, was completely ruined by painting it white. No.

From Mama's comments I get the vibe that this is the "nobodies" end of the beach (and it appears to face south, not west), so either drop the price, gut it or raze it and hope for the best; over $7M is too much, even if it has a decent amount of beach in front.

Staging lady with a Toyota said...

Oh Mama I love the whole driftwood theme,I'm going to try and get in touch with Parker Posey's people to see if she's sold that driftwood coffee table yet.I', off to Pier One Imports for some wicker vases and long dried grass.I love an ethnic Hippie at the beach theme.

Staging lady with a Toyota said...

I'm going to Japan Town too for some lacquer boxes and giant fans,Oh what fun!

so_chic_darling said...

It's just some sticks and a couple of pieces of plate glass,1960s rubbish!

Alessandra said...

Okay, Mama, I'm duly chastised and won't whine about not getting Malibu anymore. I will say that this is a fairly pedestrian flip. It does have lovely views, which all the chilrun are screaming about these days. And if it were at Big Bear Lake or Encino, it would be a luxury property. It isn't terrible; it's just dull.

Barren Karen said...

Well, I think you two are just being dramatic.

No, this is not a "significant" house in any way, but they can't all be Frank Lloyd Wrights or John Pawson's can they? Nor shoudl they be.

I rather like this house's sincere lack of pedigree. It needs some serious attention by a steady hand, but it has a nice, track in the sand, classic California beach house thing happening that works for me.

Anonymous said...

This Property [7th from left]

http://www.californiacoastline.org/cgi-bin/image.cgi?image=200601923&mode=sequential&flags=0&year=2006

[David Spade 2nd from left, Charlize Theron a few doors along from Spade]


Mortons Carbon Property [3rd from left - still unfinished when this pic was taken, Terry Semel 2nd from left]

http://www.californiacoastline.org/cgi-bin/image.cgi?image=200601902&mode=sequential&flags=0&year=2006

Anonymous said...

Mama, I wouldn't switch the private areas to the lower part of the house. I don't want people to be able to watch me doin' the nasty with no window treatments. Upstairs will let you leave the patio door open with less of a chance of visitors sneaking in too.

Anonymous said...

LGB

Not really the 'nobodies' end of the beach! This is the best part of La Costa ... Spades house in the link above is for sale at approx $16M [mama covered it], the house next door to Spades just sold for around $15M & the house next door to that place is listed at $12M [mama also covered it] then a couple doors along is Charlize Theron then you're pretty much at the end of Carbon Beach ... Though La Costa isn't as nice as Carbon or the Colony it's still prime Malibu, close to the center of town ...

High class lady decorator said...

A bit of a snooze really,even though it's right on the beach.

so_chic_darling said...

Oh Mama Fleur de Lys,now that was one of the funniest properties you have ever dished,that video dance thing in the garden!
Did it ever sell?

lil' gay boy said...

Anon 11:56 - thanks for the tip off, but even with some famous names, it's still an unimpressive stretch of beach to me - sorry, but from the photos Anon 11:47 provided (thanks!), it just one dinky beach house crammed next to another to me.

Vacation there - maybe; live there? Never.

And by the way, that first house in the second photo looks exactly like the Pier One Restaurant in Bayville; would not want to be the owner of the house next door to that.

aunt mary said...

Mama, I'm not just sidling up to you with sweet talk because my birthday is coming up, but you are in just super fine form. You just keep out doing yourself. Damn, gurl, you're good.

No house is dull where one can sit in a chair and feel Pacific Ocean spray. I know some comments are hyperbole and hot air, but really! It's the Pacific Damn Ocean for crying out loud.

Anonymous said...

I think the Osbourne's rented this in one season of their show.

lil' gay boy said...

Aunt Mary, you've certainly got a very good point there; but for the price, I just want a little MORE bang for my buck . . .

As crowded together as they are, and close to conveniences; (I'm all for dashing across the PCH at 3 AM to get my nails done), there are some small architectural gems squeezed in there along that stretch of beach I'd much rather have.

Anonymous said...

"I think the Osbourne's rented this in one season of their show"

No they didn't. In the 2nd season they rented a property at the end of Carbon beach that has since been demolished to make way for a large 2 lot property.

They do own a property on La Costa just down the beach thats currently for sale, they also perhaps own a property on Malibu Colony Road next to the Lautner but I'm not 100% sure about that.

Just before Xmas I saw Sharon coming out of a property on Carbon Beach [21942 pch] & getting into her Bentley. I've seen Kelly at this same property during summer ... I can't imagine they own a 3rd Malibu property ... It just doesn't make sense that they would own on the Colony, Carbon & La Costa ...

sandpiper said...

Given that it's the originally developed beachhouse stretch, toss on top of that the short driveways edged by PCH, these properties are a logistical nightmare for rennovation (eg park three large dumpsters where?).
If the stilts are in compliance, that would seem the biggest attribute going for this one...if renno is the goal. Love Mama's suggestion on repurposing the living area.

Regardless of everything, it's on the beach (yea!) and appears to be be structurally stable as is. My kinda place. In a hot second!

Anonymous said...

Whoa, anon 4:05, no need to jump down my throat. My mistake, I stand corrected about the Osbourne's.

Anonymous said...

Believe me, that was not jumping down your throat!

Only the 1st few lines were aimed at you, the rest was more a question to any malibu readers/realtors who could perhaps answer my query ...

sunny in sj said...

Having in beach deficent all my life in my opinion, I love the views and gulp, I even like the staging. I don't think I want too much color in a beach house that can get durty. And call me Miss-Guided, but I do like white at the beach. Re-doing the floors would be ok, also doing some nicer glass doors, like the kind that don't appear to have a frame. And I like the bedroom as is, sorry Mama and friends.

LGB, come on down to my beach house and we'll dash accross PCH at 3AM to get our nails done together! That just cracked me up. I am still laughing.

Anonymous said...

4:05
Don't get your feathers ruffled. There will always be one or two that feel superior. A sad one tonight is tacky Aunt/Queen Mary, so ignore her too! It's not worth the gas.
You're dong fine. Don't be thin skinned. Igonre the flamers and keep posting.

pch said...

I'm wondering who thought the living room's prime oceanfront corner was a good spot for the bar and fireplace.

sandpiper said...

Hey PCH
Yah, that fireplace / bar arrangement is wonky at best.
How about ... Crow bar!!!

lil' gay boy said...

CROWBAR???

You see, this is where a professional arsonist can come in handy . . .

I'm not breaking a bead of sweat to dislodge a tacky fireplace and even tackier bar (still quite haven't figured out how to even get in it.) But it does block the sliver of a multi-million dollar view.

Sunny, nails @ 3 AM, then over to Starbucks?

sandpiper said...

Yes, Smartie Little Buddie,

Crow Bar!

My deductive (bleechhh+LOL) reasoning tells me there's a flu tangled up above, but it can be retro'ed to do a sleek see-thru firebox with unobstusive vent, dig it?

Alessandra said...

That's like shagadelic, sandpiper.

Mmmmm...beach house. See, I can be convinced, after enough T&Ts and some sex-ay imagery.

lil' gay boy said...

A firebox that goes through to the deck outside - now you're talking!

Girl at the bar said...

Listen up,it's an ugly ass house but it has a bar and boy do I love a bar!

Girl at the bar said...

Listen up,it's an ugly ass house but it has a bar and boy do I love a bar!

Girl at the bar said...

I have a tendency to repeat myself after a few doubles!

lil' gay boy said...

Alright - so don't bulldozer it; at the very least gut it and start anew.

It just seems to me an awful lot of work to not tear it down and erect (there's that word, again!) a genuine modern-day Malibu beach house with lots of charm and style.

Sure, they're cheek-by-jowl, but the location, from what all you chilruns have said, is less than housing project in location and style, and more location, location, location.

I'll take your word for it and go with that; Long Island has similarly crowded stretches of south facing beach, but with over a thousand miles of shorefront, there's a little more room for privacy (excluding enclaves like Long Beach and Point Lookout), like the various South Fork, Hamptons and East End "hamlets," where spacing between houses is not a problem.

But we're still talking the Atlantic, not the Pacific. Different shade of aqua, one more old world than the other.

Include Fire Island, and its more notorious fabulous residents, and you've got an unparalleled enclave, regardless of sexual orientation

Still not the Pacific Ocean, but some of the most fabulous shoreline this country has ever seen.

lucy said...

It's a beach house. It's supposed to be casual and comfortable and not have anything of true significance that can be rotted by sea air and boozy parties that last three days.

Yes, I might change a few things around* (but not switch the living/private floors) but basically, it's a beach house. With fabulous views. In Malibu. Nice.

*Rule #1. Do not block your view with fireplaces. My brother's Malibu pad is completely glass on the the ocean-facing side....the fireplace is on the side facing the neighbors.

Wendy said...

So much to say about such a nothing little house.Many of the children are windbags.

LAPD Tipster said...

Mama, looks like Eddie Cibrian's house has sold to funny man Carlo Mencia.

Miami Architect said...

How do they cram 4/3 and the rest in 1,900 sq ft? Please... get the floorplans!

Barren Karen said...

Miami Architect,

You must cater to the fancy people because my sister lives in Orlando in a 5 bedroom and 3 bathroom tract house that's just 1800 sq. ft. Little rooms and tiny closets is how it's done.

4 kids by 3 men. Her name is Maureen but she makes people call her Peaches. I swear. She's a little embarrassing, but we love her anyway.

Alessandra said...

While barren karen has a valid point about small bedrooms and closets, square footage as per title reports or county assessments is often wildly inaccurate (usually the error is showing lower sq. ft. than actual home has). Many home-owners have to bring in the architectural plans or have a third-party company come out and measure and do a floor plan in order to get it corrected with the county.

Wendy said...

Let me know if anything happens.

Anonymous said...

Sure Wendy, you're the first person any of us "windbags" is going to think of.

aunt mary said...

Wendy, nothing happening yet. I'm pouting because someone called me a superior tacky queen flamer. I repudiate three of those words.

Alessandra, my 1880 house was built with no closets because at that time if, you could stand inside the walls of a space it was called a room and was taxed according to the number of rooms in the house. There are two closets that you cannnot stand in but neither is it deep enough for a hanger. The rooms are all very large so square feet was not an issue. My "frugal" Dutch forebears would probably have opted for one room except for the indecency that might engender.

I've said it once, and I'll say it again. Go Obama. Sorry Hillary supporters. :)

Wendy said...

Aunt Mary IS a happening.I'm awake now.

lil' gay boy said...

Aw, Aunt Mary, please don't pout . . .

Just have a nice glass of sherry and some Godivas and contemplate what an interesting election this is going to be!

sandpiper said...

Aunt Mary,
We're both Dutch! Must be good.

Ik hou van je, mijn schat.

I mean that sincerely. You've heard those words spoken in Dutch, I'm sure. No sweeter sound.

lil' gay boy said...

Sandpiper, Aunt Mary - the stars have aligned!

I come from a remote line of Brinkerhoffs, another Dutch family (although I don't understand a word of it - I thought Sandpiper was having a stroke for a moment!)

What are the odds on that?

Sandpiper, can I get a translation?

Polly said...

Mama better come up with a new post soon it's like last call at a cheap bar around here.

sandpiper said...

Little buddy and Aunt Mary (if she cares <3...)

It means I love you little angel ... or little sweatheart. It's a very endearing thing to say in Dutch. If anyone has heard it inside family walls it's meaningful.

sandpiper said...

..Polly, no offense, but nothing cheap about it. I'm sharing nice memories.

somebody's sister said...

Does Polly have any meaning here? Who is she? I don't understand her bitterness.

Hi There said...

(fingers stuck in ears)

La...la...la...la...la...la...la

skipping over the freaky love fest.

sandpiper said...

Hey Hi There,
Me too.

Polly said...

Not bitter,just not having a Hallmark moment that's all.

sunny in sj said...

Aunt Mary, You are tops w/me, you know that. Go Obama!! I'm so excited!! Our news just said he took Maine of all places where I don't beleive there are any black people living. I truly think he is the hope of America. Nothing against Hillary, I just think he is the better candidate.

Oh, also Aunt Mary, my house in Indiana was also built in 1880 and it had one closet in it, that for that era was huge but of course was never big enough for us. It had none in the other 2 bedrooms.

lil' gay boy said...

Sunny, Aunt Mary:

Leave it to those innovative Americans; a short history of the closet:

Considered rooms and taxed as such by the British crown, closets were not often built during the colonial era. After the American Revolution, the "closet tax" was abolished, allowing homeowners to construct closets without additional taxation.

And, of course, "closeted":

"The word closet was first used to mean secret or unsuspected as early as the 1600s, but not in relation to a person’s sexuality. Closeted also came into use around the same time and meant to keep something hidden or secret from others. Closet case, closet queen, or closet homosexual began to be used during the middle of the 20th century to mean that someone was hiding their homosexuality from others."

Ain't real estate history grand? And they wonder why we go off on tangents, sometimes . . .

Anonymous said...

It ain't the bar thats cheap, it's the street walkers that wandered in smelling up the place. So much for "Cheers", now it's looking like a reunion for retired "Hooters" waitresses.

Girl At The Bar, order a round for the regulars - it's on me. And see if there is a doctor in the house to give those hos some penicillin...or at least a ruffie.

fairfield girl said...

I love it!

bentley said...

Me too. I thought I had pretty good taste!?

What's wrong with white ceilings? I'm afraid to look up in any room in my house now. Someone please help me.

Wreking Ball said...

I actually like La Costa a lot, its nice quiet, none of those public access entrances ;)

RE: Obournes: One of the houses they had on the show was on Carbon Beach right near the light for Carbon Canyon. It was gutted and completely remodeled but was not demolished. Next door there is a giant two lot home.

popeye the sailor said...

well, blow me down - it turns out a pickle ball court - is 20" x 44" in a 26" x 60" space, whereas a tennis court is 36" wide by 78" in 60" X 120" space, so as dern crazy as it might seem for a hoose like that, i think it might be a p-ball court - cause there ain't no doubles alleys either.

Anonymous said...
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