SELLER: Mark McGrath
LOCATION: Los Angeles, CA
SIZE: 3 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms
YOUR MAMAS NOTES: Funny things sometimes happen on the way to the celebrity real estate rodeo. About a week ago, while on a vacation that we spent too much time working, Your Mama received a missive from the bizzy boys at Celebrity Address Aerial who kindly let us know that heavily tattooed musician/tee-vee presenter Mark McGrath listed his long time Los Angeles home situated on a ridge at the tippy-top of Sunset Plaza Drive.
Like Your Mama is want to do when we get a dab of dish on some for sale celebrity real estate, we took to the interweb where we quickly located the listing that proudly announced the property, listed at $1,199,000, is a "Celebrity owned hideaway renovated w/ designer finishes." But alas, buttercups, the listing has since vanished from the MLS as well as all the real estate listing aggregators such as Redin. So, although we have a copy of the original listing and the property still appears on the listing agent's website, it's a little unclear to Your Mama if this property remains on the (open) market, if it's already gone to escrow, or if Mister McGrath had a real estate change of heart.
Mister McGrath's primary claim to fame is as the lead singer of a pop-rock band called Sugar Ray. The band released a new album called Music for Cougars in the summer of 2009, but their salad days were way back in the late 1990s when one of their songs called Fly got a lot of radio play. Starting in 2004, Mister McGrath began supplementing his thinning music income by taking a job as a co-host of the boob-toob celebrity gossip fest Extra. He also hosted of a couple of reality shows with the Pussycat Dolls that Your Mama is pretty sure no one we know ever watched or even heard of. Since he was axed from Extra in 2008 and replaced by the glimmering Mario Lopez, Mister McGrath has made efforts to revive his music career, currently works as the host of a game show called Don't Forget the Lyrics!, and is a guest blogger on People's Celebrity Babies blog.
Although Mister McGrath been with his fiancée and baby momma Carin Kingsland off and on for the last 15 or 16 years–they recently had fraternal twins–Mister McGrath still managed to get with a small boatload of high profile Hollywood hotties and hussies in the early and mid 2000s including Baywatch babe Pam Anderson, former fashion model Sara Foster (who is now hitched to pro tennis player Tommy Haas), Paris "It's not my purse or my cocaine" Hilton, former soap star Jordana Brewster, hack-tress Michelle Ruben, and sex-bomb Carmen Electra. Clearly Mister McGrath likes a klassy ladee.
Anyhoo, property records show that Mister McGrath purchased his residence in August of 1999 for $529,000. This would have been around the time he and his band were at the very apex of their success. Property records show that the house measures a modest 1,527 square feet and listing information indicates there are 3 bedrooms and 2 poopers.
Mister McGrath's single story house occupies 5 small down sloping parcels and yet still manages to sit well above the street for privacy. Black and white striped awnings over the front door and windows class the place up and give an otherwise architecturally ordinary house an itty-bitty but welcomed bit of Hollywood glamor. A decorative wrought iron security gate on the street opens to a staircase that winds up to the front of the house where lush tropical foliage surrounds a small strip of lawn. While the lawn is pretty–iffin you think lawns are pretty–it is Your Mama's humble and utterly meaningless opinion that the west facing patch of grass would be far better utilized as a proper but wee terrace outfitted with a couple of cozy chairs and a shade umbrella for sipping morning Bloody Marys on hot summer days or watching the sun set over the canyons with a big pitcher of ice cold gin & tonics.
The interiors spaces have hardwood floors throughout and the step down living room has vaulted beamed ceiling, fireplace–over which is mounted a large flat screen tee-vee, natch–and a bank of French doors that open the room the rear patio and pool terrace. The room has been done up in a vaguely Bali-esque manner with a suite of white slip covered upholstered pieces, yards and yards of shiny copper colored curtains, a cliché orchid sitting on the wood coffee table, and a bit ol' Buddha statue. Lo-werd children, what is it with all these Hollywood types and their ubiquitous Buddha statues? We get that a body might be looking for a little spiritual enlightenment (or whatever) but someone better come hog tie Your Mama and stick us in a damn psych ward for an evaluation of our mental faculties iffin they ever find one of them Buddha things in our house.
A small formal dining room has several shallow niches with shelves for displaying knick-knacks and paddy whacks and the adjacent galley style kitchen has been upgraded with crisp white cabinetry, some with glass doors for showing off the dishes, jet black granite counter tops, blah beige tile floors, and all the expected middle range stainless steel appliances. Sadly, a small pooper–we're not sure if this is an additional half bath or if this is the second family bathroom–opens directly into the kitchen which could surely make for some embarrassing, unfortunate, and nose hair curling olfactory moments.
A window-lined turret with peaked and beamed ceiling holds a charming breakfast nook with built in seating that looks out over the backyard where a swarthy stone terrace surrounds a small free-form saltwater swimming pool and raised spa. We happen to like these irregular shaped dark grey paver stones used for the terrace, but given the severe southern California sun we worry that these things could heat up like a stove top on even the most temperate sunny days. It reminds us of the high-larious story about when showboater Pia Zadora had the hare-brained notion to do the terrace surrounding the swimming pool at Pickfair in black granite, a material that ensured the swimming pool never be approached with bare feet lest they be fried like a damn piece of chicken. Anyhoo, a built-in barbecue area with expensive Viking brand grill completes Mister McGrath's back yard that's enclosed by a charming vine draped picket fence over which are scenic canyon and expansive sky views.
Your Mama, who does not know a fishing rod from a a pool cue, has no knowledge of why Mister and soon to be Missus McGrath would choose to move at this particular point and time. Since the not yet married pair recently had a set of twins, we're gonna guess it's a classic case of New Baby Needs a New House Syndrome, because if we've said it once we've said it nine times too many: Celebrity sorts so often think they require a new residence every time they trade in their mate for a new model and/or make a baby.