Thursday, March 6, 2008

Your Mama Hears...

...from three separate and unconnected sources that a deal might be in the works for the lavish and leviathan mansion of mega-money dee-vorcée Suzanne Saperstein. The children will recall the 5+ acre property, called Fleur de Lys and located in the heart of hoity toity Holmby Hills, was humped on to the market in the Summer of 2007 with heaps of publicity and a eye popping and hair raising $125,000,000 price tag.

Although the list of potential buyers for the undeniably immoderate mansion is a closely guarded secret among the lucky few real estate agents with clients in that stratosphere, Your Mama has heard through the gossip grapevine that the 35,000 square foot palace has been viewed by foreign dignitaries, Middle Eastern potentates, a couple super rich Americans, and at least one new money Russian oligarch sitting on an Everest sized mountain of Rubles.

Let's not bust out the Moët and Chandon just yet though, because if we learned anything from the $68,000,000 broken down deal on Nancy Daly Riordan's Malee-boo manse, it's that these big money deals ain't easy to put together and they can go sour on a moments notice.

The Sapersteins also put their Hummingbird Nest Ranch on the market last year for a rather optimistic $75,000,000, and the Simi Valley horsey haven remains unsold and available for any filthy rich equine fanatic looking to board their polo ponies in the lap of luxury.

26 comments:

pch said...

I remember when Vanity Fair did a spread on this house five or six years ago, and one of the photographs was of the family gathered around a harp. It was so goofy, I couldn't help but like them.

Alessandra said...

The Hummingbird Nest Ranch actually looks quite nice, even though it is in that seventh circle of hell known as Simi Valley (too hot for me!). As for Fleur de Lys(I think I just broke out into hives typing that), I'd love to see some interior photos. It sounds like it either has the potential to be as garish as Guccione's marble dildo or it could be extremely constrained and tasteful.

What I love on one of the ranch links from the WSJ is that Snoop Dogg was selling his house in Claremont. That cracks me up every time I read it. Claremont is a perfectly lovely little town, my husband attended Harvey Mudd and has fond memories, and if we ever go further east in LA County, that would be the only place I'd move. It's quaint, civilized, has wonderful little shops, some fabulous Greene and Greene architecture (and inspired-by homes), plus all the academia two geeks could want. And Snoop Dogg lived there. It just doesn't compute.

As for Ms. Saperstein, this will most likely sell to a foreigner. While I love the privacy that five acres in Holmby Hills can get you, I think many Americans might be put off by the style of the home and think it is not "accessible" enough. And I could be wrong; just a gut feeling.

Anonymous said...

Alessandra...click through on the links provided, Mama posted tons of interior shots of Fleur.

Anonymous said...

A foreigner? It was American bad taste that built it so it's possible that American bad taste will buy it.

Barren Karen said...

anon 7:42...

Okaaay! Thank you! Don't nobody should act like every American has such great taste. Has anyone seen that Champ d'Or place in Texas? Those American people and their pile of shit make Suzanne Saperstein's house look positively country.

I'd like to skinny dip in Suzanne's pool with the mysterious (and absent lately) Babe Parish, whom I still love passionately.

wrecking ball said...

Ah well the polo crowd would have a difficult time at Hummingbird Nest Ranch, no polo field, no track to exercise the ponies. It is specifically a Show Jumping equestrian center, meaning the beautiful grass field has natural obstacles, ie open water jumps, ditches, grobs, definitely not conducive to playing polo, so it is much more buyer specific, not even mentioning the Simi Valley location.

lil' gay boy said...

What's deceptive about this place is that it is literally squeezed onto its lot, which is across the street from Geffen's more spacious plot of land. Take an aerial look with live maps or google earth.

Mama did indeed post a series of five or six sets of photos of the interior; it's like trying too hard to be old world meeting funeral parlor inside, with grand rooms, upscale but tacky 24K gold accents, top of the line finishes, and rooms with no real point to them, other than to impress and balance out the Beaux Arts floor plan.

And I've heard it sits on a fault line, so was constructed on special rollers to ride out a quake - klassy.

Alessandra said...

Built on rollers to ride out a quake is common for high rise buildings here, LGB. That's the first SFR I've heard of done that way, but it is immense, so for sheer square footage, I suppose an argument can be made in its favor.

I am dim and can't find the interior photo links. Will try later or someone could helpfully point out which link.

pch said...

A fair downslope from Carolwood to Angelo somewhat mitigates the sense of being hemmed in. The house is sited mid-slope, low enough below Carolwood and high enough above Angelo that (by Holmby Hills standards) it doesn't particularly overwhelm the lot from either perspective. It would be nice if they grew hedges like Geffen's (which must be 30 feet tall) but you can't win them all...and we'd still have to look at the ridiculously huge gates on Angelo.

Anonymous said...

Is that another house/property that appears to be squeezed onto the (what appears to be) same property - the one with the kidney shaped pool??

Anonymous said...

Uhh, it is 45,000 square feet, not 35,000. You are forgiven!

Bigdaddyj said...

Would anyone want this hideous pile even if the lot weren't hemmed in? I think I'd take a pass even if you put it on 100 acres...

The Hollywood Mayor said...

Right you are bigdaddyj....

I wouldn't buy this place if it was on 2000 acres.. it's the coldest, most non-classy pile of crap I've seen in a long time... just flashy and gawdy.

Almost or at least equally as bad as the Bernini mansion in Bel Air... I've been inside that one (they use it mostly for tv, photo shoots etc now) and it's over the top in every possible way...

pch said...

Can't believe I'm about to defend this place, but...with the caveat that I consider it way over the top in every category...when you compare it to other very large houses built in the same stylistic vein over the last 15 years, this one is much truer to its architectural inspiration, has much better proportions, much more impressive build quality and faithful interior decoration. Would I want to live here? No. But I'd rather have this across the street from me than houses like 100 N. Carolwood, 330 S. Mapleton or even 461 N. Faring.

My issues actually have more to do with the fussy gates, retaining walls, outbuildings, et al that compound the pretentious vibe. Unless you tear down and start over or subdivide, the best solution from my perspective it to de-formalize the environment. Get all Capability Brown on the place. Slap some climbing plants on all the stark retaining walls, ditch the outsize gates, soften the forecourt with landscaping and pools/fountains, that kind of stuff. In a context like that, the house itself would seem less obnoxious.

Anonymous said...

Why, why, why would someone ever want to live in something like this? It boggles my mind..

luke220 said...

PCH, once again you are on target.

The house is very well situated, really not visible from the street and I imagine total privacy from within.

lil' gay boy said...

PCH,

While what you've said and what I've read about this monstrous pile is true, in the end it's just a sad attempt to recapture a type of craftsmanship that no longer survives, or remains relevant.

As for Capability Brown, even if you could raise him from the dead he'd take one look at this place and run right back to his coffin; neither he, Vaux, or the Olmstead clan could save this exterior.

Too much house, not enough land.

lil' gay boy said...

BTW, I was trying to think up a word to describe this massive pile, when the image of Capability Brown's rotting corpse streaking across it's all-too-manicured lawn, withered hands covering his eyes; shrieking as bits of flesh drop from his calcified bones when the word for this place struck me:


_______________________MACABRE_______________________

pch said...

Imagine that the exterior walls of the ground floor are covered in climbing vines; that there's a large, circular reflecting pool in the middle of the forecourt; and that rows of leafy trees line the sides of the forecourt. Basically, I'm convinced that a verdant counterpoint to the severe architecture would make a huge difference.

lil' gay boy said...

PCH,

I appreciate your trying to redeem this place (after all, it was constructed to very high standards), but what you just described sounded just a tad "Flowers In The Attic" for me . . .

Anonymous said...

I've followed F de L for a while....as an architect, I can't fault the quality of construction and stonework but the interiors are way too gaudy.

People with new fortunes have always built show places... this one is near me in scotland and was built in Edwardian times along a similar classical theme.
http://www.manderston.co.uk/

You can check out some more interior shots of F de L on the Robertson Partners website.
The new owner would need to get a good designer like Nicky Haslam in there quick sharp!
http://www.robertsonpartners.net/interiordesign.htm

lil' gay boy said...

Anon 5:00

There's a big difference between a classic home like Manderston, built in an age when old-world craftsmanship was a skill still handed down through families from generation to generation, and Fleur de Lys, a desperate, grasping attempt to duplicate the same with mass manufactured crap pulled off the shelves at Home Despot . . .

Anonymous said...

LGB

I agree that Manderston is a higher quality of building altogether from Fleur de Lys, it was the social ambition and 'edifice complex' of the monyed owners that was similar...

Glimmerglass said...

I believe that Hummingbird Ranch - which someone else property corrected was designed for jumpers not polo - is the 'Biggest Loser Ranch' for the NBC Series.

Never a fan of the Mrs/Mrs with their disgraceful treatment of a particular grand prix jumper following their horse not making the cut on the Olympic equestrian team.

90077 said...

The house is the real deal!! How i heard about the house was when it was being built and one of the contractors (doing the Landry design house on the corner of carolwood and sunset)starting spazing out about the house. started telling me all the details and how much it cost to build. He told me it will cost $135mil or something like $3000 a sqt to build! it has a water reclamation center, ball room etc.

I love the interior of the Iris Cantor home the most and the exterior if the sapperstein with land on the 157 acres on Tower Grove! that would be the greatest home i can think of!!

As for as the 330 S Mapleton home, its not all that, My friend was looking to buy it and said the quality was no great. What makes a home great is the quality and details. Sappersteins home has that and makes it the greatest home in all the US!!!

wrecking ball said...

glimmerglass why do I recognize your screen name? COTH maybe?
I totally agree while the facility may be amazing for hunter jumper stuff, regretfully the location is lacking, but their treatment of their former trainer is completely despicable.

And yes the place is the filming location for the "Biggest Loser".