Sunday, October 24, 2010

Weekend Wrap Up

It seems that Democratic movers and shakers Bill and Hilary Clinton can't make up their damn real estate minds. For the last six or so months the couple have been traipsing through some the finest homes in the best zip codes in Westchester County (NY) looking to upgrade from their already quite luxurious residence in Chappaqua, NY.

According to a recent report, Bill and Hil have toured 20-acre Clover Hill Farm in Bedford, NY no less than nine times and yet they can't seem to pull the trigger and make a stoopid offer. One local broker snitched to The Post that some other real estate people in the area have grown sick and tired of the Clinton's tire kicking and if they weren't Bill the former president of the United States and Hil the current Secretary of State "no one would show them anything anymore." Ouch.

Over the course of the 9 times they've (allegedly) toured Clover Hill Farm the price has sank from $10,900,000 to $8,900,000. Maybe they're just a couple of Bargain Betties and they're waiting for the price to drop another two million?

Oscar winning romantic comedy queen Julia Roberts (Eat, Pray, Love, Erin Brockovich, Pretty Woman) picked up a penthouse pad in a post-war building on lower Fifth Avenue in New York City. The Greenwich Village aerie, with its roof top terrace, according to The Post, cost the toothy west coast based superstar $3,895,000. They also reported that Miz Roberts will hang on to her long time Gramercy Park pied a terre.

Miz Roberts lives primarily at a big ranch in New Mexico and a quite large, recently completed cliff top estate in Malibu, CA.

Writer Michael Gross, who literally wrote the book on the famed 740 Park Avenue building in New York and is working on a similar book about the lives of Los Angeles' richest and biggest living residents revealed that philanthropic entrepreneurs Lynda and Stewart Resnick–they own Teleflora, POM Wonderful, Fiji Water and a number of other things–have added a fourth contiguous property their their already massive three parcel spread in Beverly Hills.

Mister and Missus Resnick own Sunset House, a a famous and famously astonishing 1929 Beaux-Arts mansion on Sunset Boulevard. Over the years the mad-rich couple purchased the estates on either side of their palatial pad and razed the residences and in their places added citrus and pomegranate groves, formal gardens, a football field sized lawn large enough to pitch the largest party tent money will rent, and a vast parking area.

According to listing information, Mister and Missus Resnick paid $7,935,110 for the 8,287 square foot house that sits on a 1.05 acre corner lot and includes 2 bedrooms (plus 2 staff rooms) and a total of 8 poopers. The private and gated estate has a circular drive, massive service court, 3 car garage, large lawns and a swimming pool but that's probably of little import because Your Mama expects they'll knock the house down.

According to Mister Gross, the house the Resnicks bought was owned in the mid-1970s by actor James Caan.

Now that he's purchased Diane Keaton's Ralph Flewelling designed Colonial Rivival residence in Beverly Hills, über successful Tinseltown scribe Ryan Murphy (Popular, Running With Scissors, Nip/Tuck, Glee) has re-listed his Los Angeles home in the hills above the star studded Chateau Marmont hotel.

Mister Murphy unsuccessfully attempted to sell his sleek but warm concrete, wood and glass Carl Maston designed digs in May of 2008 when it was listed for $4,195,000. This week it was hauled back on the market with a much lower asking price of $3,250,000.

After a big ol' dust up with their neighbors who installed scaffolding to the exterior of their building in preparation for an extensive renovation, art Collector Charles Saatchi and his celebrity chef wife Nigella Lawson have, according to the Daily Mail, opted to cash out of their large London crib rather than suffer through a long and loud renovation next door. They are said to have heaved their sprawling apartment on swank Eaton Square in Belgravia on the market with an asking price of £36,000,000–a skin blistering $56,433,600 according to Your Mama's currency conversion contraption–which is a seriously higher price than the £3,800,000–that's just under six million American clams–that Mister Saatchi paid for the place just nine years ago.

We're not sure what he did over the last 9 years to justify a ten fold increase in value but for those numbers it better have some solid gold Jeff Koons designed terlits.

Daphne Guinness, fashion daredevil, international gadabout, and heiress to the Guinness beer fortune, has also got trouble with her New York City neighbors who, according to The Post have filed suit against the sassy sartorial icon for repeatedly flooding their multi-million dollar apartment no fewer than four times due to an over-flowing bathtub.

The quartet of floods have not only inconvenienced the downstairs neighbors–hedge hog Karim Samii and his wife Tina–but caused extensive damage to the sheet rock, moldings and a vanity table. The Samiis say they've become afraid to leave their apartment lest Miz Guinness once again turn the water on to fill her tub and then just forget about it. They've asked for more than a million bucks to pay for damages and compensate for their emotional distress. They have also asked the court to bar Miz Guinness from taking or filling her bathtub until something is done that will keep her bathtub from over flowing.

According to StreetEasy, Miz Guinness purchased her 4,118 square foot spread in April of 2008 for $11,734,719 and the Samiis theirs a month earlier for $12,852,946.

Miz Guinness did not, surprisingly, have any comment for The Post.


Anonymous said...

The Saatchi apartment has a short 23 year lease left so Charlie boy will have to extend it with the lease on offer from the freeholder (Grosvenor Estates)(£23 million pounds) which will take it to a 110-112 year lease. So hence the price. But he will still pocket £10 million. Though he is moving because of building woes why is it going to be diffrent for the buyer?

Madam Pince said...

Mama, what happened to the house Julia R was building in Venice? I remember thinking she'd be at home in such a funky environment.

Nigella Lawson is, to put it nicely, a piece of work. I'd rather move than put up with her as a neighbor.

Anonymous said...

If I am reading correctly, the current price in Bedford Hills is $7.9 million. Maybe getting in range?

Anonymous said...

I'm not sure Saatchi is moving due to the neighbor he's at war with. I think the house next door is about to start a huge refurbishment digging down several stories below & out underneath the rear garden so I guess it makes sense to move.

It's also correct about the leasehold ... he had to pay £23M to extend the lease. That's why the Duke of Westminster [Grosvenor Estate] is so god damn rich!

lil' gay boy said...

My my, Mama, but you've been busy; hopefully this means your little "procedure" didn't turn up anything too startling?

1) Seems the lookie loos are trying to buy some instant New England respectability; Clover Hill farm is lovely, but methinks they have an eye not just on the best price, but post-political hobnobbing?

2) Could I smell a stab at Broadway (or off, off-off, or off-off-off) to prop up a sagging career?

3) I must say I'm still astonished that someone could pay such a premium for tear-downs to accommodate parking? Or trees?

4) For a better-than=average MCM (despite its awkward "Wrightian" touches) it's surprising that it hasn't moved yet (except for a tremor or two).

5) For that amount of dosh, I'd want to buy, not lease.

6) Sounds more like that girl is "...gonna wash that man right outta my hair..." I find it hard to believe it isn't deliberate.

angie said...

It could be that although Bill & Hill are very interested in Clover Hill Farm, they are also aware that it's over priced, and simply couldn't be bothered playing the real estate games that have become part and parcel of purchasing a home in a swankier area these days.

Clearly, the Clinton's really don't need those agents, or the price wouldn't have dropped $2MM on it's own in just the last 6 months. The agents are upset because they want the Clinton's money, yesterday, regardless of whether the purchase price is fair or not, but Hill and Bill are too smart to piss their money away.

And no one's forcing them to show the place, but they keep doing it, again, because they want the Clinton's money. And now they're talking behind the Clinton's backs apparently. They can cry me a river.

Anonymous said...

I am pleased about the overflowing bathtub story. It's a pity there isn't more nasty infighting among the parasitic superrich. What we really could use in the USA is the guillotine; it did a fine job getting rid of parasites in France in 1789-91.

property lady said...

Life is hard for Bill and Hil - it's just so stressful choosing between all these luxurious properties. Wouldn't they love to trade it in to be an average joe so they don't have to deal with all of this?

Anonymous said...

er......uh.............I think not.

Anonymous said...

Don't know why the Clinton's would be shopping for new homes - they don't even live together & haven't in years.

Biffles said...

Actually, the Resnicks did not raze the home immediately to the west of their burned down. Hmm...

Anonymous said...

There are bad neighbors everywhere, even in multi-million dollar neighborhoods.

Anonymous said...

What is the buyer's commission on a house in the 10m range? 3% would make it $300K....

Gosh to think that if they had to make 100 house visits it would reduce the realtor's rate to $3K per visit. Dreadful to think how the economy is effecting these poor souls!

Do you remember when Linda Evangelista remarked that she won't get out of bed for less than $10,000 - and that was thought to be entitled.

Anonymous said...

Clover Hill Farm was once a serene, low key place owned by an older couple with a dreamy Irish groom for their horses. I used to ride through there regularly. Apparently some new structure has appeared on the property which looks totally faux and out of place, apparently built by the most recent owner. Perhaps the Clinton's should find the original photographs, knock this pastiche down and return the property to its original calm. Maybe they are getting this vibe and just waiting for it to pencil out.

Anonymous said...

Oh yes, the faux Resnicks! Interesting how one of the adjacent house burned down in a suspicious fire...paint cans in the garage or some such story and the other just popped up to enable the future expansion for the nouveau gardens of Versailles. This faaahaaaaaabulous empire was built on proceeds from the Franklin Mint which essentially sold worthless but " oh so collectable" merchandise to millions of people. It went on from there to selling faux replicant pearls of Jackie Kennedy's already faux pearls( which at least were authentically hers). Now we have Fiji water in plastic bottle flying in on transpacific flights so that the bottles can eventually collect in the giant plastic, pacific horror story which is threatening the ocean, all that resides in it and eventually all that consume fish and seaweed from it. Moving on to Pom Wonderful , that magic elixir touted to cure all ills. Every era has its snake oil salesmen and marketing gurus promising you everything, happy to take your money giving you nothing of value in return. Voila! BUT WE ARE PHILANTHROPISTS....CAN'T YOU SEE THAT?

Ronna Bare-it said...

Thanks Mama, cant wait for Mr.Gross book on the resnicks. Dear departed nancy used to share how Linda would always arrive at her luncheons with a driver AND separate person to hold umbrella (i think she borrowed from p.diddy) so she would not get that nasty sun from the 30sec walk via car to front door.ugggg the new rich. though linda has come along way from "decorator asst to drunken billy hibbert" she married well. Stuart is also the current mulholland of this era, stealing the water from up north to keep is pistachio orchards going. but the best story.Is years ago when they invested in "Flippers" where the current CVS is located , When the whole thing went belly up, they were just tacky and cheap enough to make FLIPPER, yes there was an actual Flipper, a wild exotic english man.... well, they made him work off his debt as their butler, eeech, to my surprise when I entered the house one day in the early 80s.
About the house, only three owners, built in 1917? for one million dollars, 2nd owner, brother of owner lived there in run down mess with thousands of cats, then in 1977 purchased by stuart resnick for $1,000,000.......crazy, anway, cant wait to read the book, supposedly, amongst all their holdings, they also OWN mayor Villarosa........go figure
If you get the urge, you can always contactt linda via her blog, and you will get a smart return email from her assit, disputing that Fiji water leaves the largest carbon footprint of any water, and that those stories of the resnicks armed guards keeping the natives (shoot on sight)from the springs, are all lies. hmmm

Jeannified said...

I wonder how much Diane Keaton's house told for. Hmmm...

I knew that Nigella Lawson was well-heeled, but Jeez-sus!!! I read recently that she said when you reather your next, you want to stay in it with the people you love. I like that, but she is too over-the-top for me at the same time.

Also...poor Samiis for having to deal with Ms. Guinness! That's why I woudl never want an expensive apartment, but ratehr a single-family house. You have to deal with idiots like that and lay out more money to pay for their irresponsible behavior!

Anonymous said...

@C. Miz Resnick could certainly benefit from a small dose of class and humility. When the R's were petitioning BH for variances associated with their proposed Gardens of Versailles, so not confident of her choice Mark Rios (landscape architect) to present the issue correctly to the Planning Commission, she just HAD to pop up at the end of the proceedings to make her own overblown case. It's on film, if you check the BH commission archives, you will definitely see the winner of a Rotten Tomato Award for " Crude and Entitled".