Thursday, February 7, 2013

Your Mama Hears...

Hold on to your britches beotches because Your Mama hears from two separate but equally well-connected snitches that there's budding new real estate baller in Los Angeles and her name is Sybil Robson Orr. Simmer down now, children. Your Mama knows that Miz Orr isn't really a celebrity—or even a "celebrity"—but make no mistake, butter cups, the lady is loaded.

According to the research of our frequent and indefatigable informant Yolanda Yakketyak, Miz Orr's father, Nick, is the brother of Helen Robson Kempner, the now-deceased widow of Wal-Mart co-founder Sam Walton. At the time the Widda Walton went to meet her maker, in April 2007, she was listed at #29 on the Forbes 400 with an astounding net worth estimated to have been worth $16.4 billion.

We don't have any idea how much of the Wal-Mart money has trickled down into Miz Orr's coffers—plenty, it would seem, based on her much whispered about recent real estate activities, which we'll get to in a minute—but all the children know how much money those Walton people have, right?

According to a December (2012) article in/on Forbes the Walton family's total wealth hovers around $100 billion, an amount greater than that of the bottom 30% of Americans...combined. Their unfathomable fortune, built on selling massive amounts of goods and services out of big box stores at prices lower than small locally owned businesses can typically compete with, is equal to .14% of all U.S. Wealth. Whatever anyone may think of the income inequality issue in the good ol' U.S. of A., those are some jaw dropping statistics that could cause a regular, run of the mill free market capitalist to need a damn nerve pill.

In addition to whatever slice of the Wal-Mart money pie Miz Orr has or has access to—and we really don't know an iota about her income or net worth—she's married to a fellow named Matt Orr, a financier turned entrepreneur who we can all probably pretty safely assume has amassed a substantial financial nut of his own. Anyhoo...

Before Your Mama gets to the meat of the real estate part of the story let's first have a wee lesson in Los Angeles real estate geography. At the western end of the famed Sunset Strip a basket weave of winding streets twist and turn their way up into through canyons and along the ridges of the rugged Santa Monica Mountain range. The decidedly affluent neighborhood is usually referred to as "The Birds" because—you got it smarty pants—all the streets are named after birds and has long been favored by rich and famous Angelenos who both appreciate the easy-access central location and covet the exact sorts of jetliner views from which so many Tinseltown real estate dreams are made.

Near the top of The Birds there are a trio of properties that make up what is sometimes referred to in L.A. real estate circles as "the Crown," a mostly flat pie shaped promontory with unimpeded panoramic canyon, city and ocean views. It is this so-called Crown that Your Mama wants to discuss today, especially as it pertains to the aforementioned Wal-Mart heiress—and occasional film producer—Sybil Robson Orr.

In early 2010, international arts and culture maven Daria Zhukova—she's the Russian born but America bred daughter of oil tycoon and arms dealer Alexander Zhukov and the long-time lady-mate/baby momma of Russian billionaire real estate baller Roman Abramovich—dropped $19,500,000 for a bulky, 9,691 square foot ochre-colored Mediterranean mansion that occupies the Crown's 1.05 acre middle parcel.

The existing residence had been custom built in the 2000s by t.v. writer/producer Adam Chase (Friends, Veronica's Closet) who sold the property in the fall of 2006 for $19,150,000 to hedge fund honcho Robert Krail. It was the Greenwich, CT-based Mister Krail who, in turn, sold the 8 bedroom and 10 bathroom mansion in January 2010 to Miss Zhukova.

So the scuttlebutt goes, Miss Zhukova—along with Mister Abramovich, we imagine—hoped to acquire the two flanking parcels that comprise the Crown. Alas, that was not to be and, it seems, if she couldn't have the whole Crown Miss Zhukova wanted no part of the the Crown at all.

On the 15th of November Miss Zhukova's no longer wanted west coast pied-a-terre unexpectedly popped up on the real estate listing aggregator Redfin with an asking price of $16,500,000. Your Mama (dissed and) discussed the property the very next day. Almost immediately we heard from a representative of Miss Zhukova who insisted that the house was not for sale and the listing evaporated from the internets. But, lo, Miss Zhukova did, in fact, want to sell the house and did, in April 2011, for $19,500,000, exactly what she paid for it just over a year earlier. Although the name of the owner of the property is obscured behind a blind trust, according to Yolanda Yakketyak and our very well-connected contact Laurel Canyon, the buyers were none other than Sybil Robson Orr and her hubby Matthew.**

To the north of the Chase/Krail/Zhukova cum Orr mansion is a 1.22 acre lot where Mexican-born actor Ricardo Montalbán lived since the early 1980s in a boxy modern manse designed by accomplished Mexican minimalist architect Ricardo Legoretta. Easily accessible online documentation shows the property was purchased from the estate of Mister Montalbán in November 2010 for $9,000,000 by a investor/developer who spec-built a massive and glassy über-contemporary residence*** that sold to an as yet unidentified buyer in late November 2012 for—brace yourselves—$38,980,000.

The smallest of the three lots that make up the Crown lies to the east of Chase/Krail/Zhukova cum Orr property. The .66 acre spread was owned, for a short time, in the latter 1990s by music industry icon Lionel Richie In 2003 the Crown estate was acquired for $7.5 million by motivational speaker Grant Cardone who teaches sales people how to sell stuff in a hard charging yet non-confrontational manner that has become his well-honed signature style.

Real estate watchers in Los Angeles may recall that Mister Cardone wanted to unload his Bird Streets aerie since as far back as 2005. Your Mama can recall the house being listed as low as $14,900,000 and last year when Mister Cardone appeared on Selling LA he actually said on national t.v. that he'd take $16 million for the mini-estate. However, being the salesman he his, he must have sniffed out some serious real estate desire because property records reveal that Mister Cardone figured out how to get someone to quietly pay $17,000,000 for the property in an off-market deal in August 2012.

The Cardone property, according to listing details still accessible online, includes a single story villa (of indeterminate architectural style) with five bedrooms and 6.5 bathrooms in 6,099 square feet. Listing details go on to show the .67 acre spread is also jam-packed with a separate guest house, a shaded loggia, party-sized terraces, a negative edge salt water swimming pool and spa plus a tennis court.

Now here's where things get really interesting, children. The identity of the buyer of Mister Cardone's house is obscured behind a blind trust but according to both Yolanda Yakkety Yak and Laurel Canyon, the buyers were—didja already guess it?—the Wal-Mart heiress and her financier husband.

Those of you that have made it this far may wonder why Mister and Missus Orr would spend $17 million to buy the house next door the the $19.5 million house they bought just a couple years ago. Well, sit tight 'cause we're gonna tell you. Yolanda Yakkeyak told Your Mama that word on the Bird Street real estate gossip grapevine is that the Orrs—who also maintain a residence in London—purchased the old Richie/Cardone property because "they feel a bit crowded up there." Their plan, according to Yolanda, is to raze the existing residence, remove the swimming pool and tennis court, re-route the driveway and add a guesthouse.

As if the Orrs spending $17 million for a property that they just want to tear down so they can have a guest house and more impressive driveway isn't enough to make the children pee their property panties wait until you hear what Laurel Canyon later told Your Mama Mister and Missus Orr want to do up there on the Bird Streets Crown. According to Miz Canyon, not only do Mister and Missus Orr plan to level the old Richie/Cardone they also plan to tear down the Chase/Krail/Zhukova cum Orr mansion so they can start completely fresh.

Did you gasp? We did when we first heard it too. Take a minute to think about that, hunties. If there is any veracity to these whispers and rumors, Mister and Missus Orr coughed up a hair raising $36,500,000 for a pair of parcels that combined come to just 1.73 acres. Sure, they are two prime pieces of land and 1.73 acres does provide some room to roam right in the middle of one of the world's largest urban centers but, people, that's nearly forty million for the land.

The ever-knowledgeable Miz Canyon thinks that it'll probably take another $20-25million to custom build a house and install grounds worthy of a piece of land for which someone has paid $36,500,000. This is not the sort of spot where somebody throws up some 3,500 square foot pre-fab thing. No, babies, this is where someone inordinately rich builds a serious residential monument to their wealth, power and privilege. And that, children, is exactly what Your Mama, Yolanda and Laurel Canyon all expect Mister and Missus Orr will do.

Yolanda tattled to Your Mama that she knows of a couple other Wal-Mart heiresses who own homes in the Bird Streets 'hood but that's really another story for another day.

*Christy Walton, the widow of Sam Walton's second oldest son John, may in fact be the richest woman in the world.  She comes in at #6 on the Forbes 400 list, as of September 2012, with has an estimated net worth of $27.9 billion; Jim Walton, the youngest of Sam Walton's progeny, ranked #7 with an estimated net worth of $26.8 billion; Alice Walton, Sam's only daughter, came in at #8 with an estimated net worth of $26.3 billion; With an estimated net worth of $26.1 billion, S. Robson Walton, Sam's oldest, slotted in at #9.

The other side of the Walton family, the descendants of Sam Walton's (deceased) brother Bud, doesn't seem to have nearly as much money as their spectacularly rich cousins but they're hardly hurting. Ann (Walton) Kroenke, Bud's oldest, came in at #79 on the Forbes 400 list as of September 2012 with a net worth of $4.5 billion. Ann's younger and only sibling, Nancy (Walton) Laurie—bless her heart—has the least amount of money of all her Walton cousins. She ranked #100 and—ahem—makes do with an estimated $3.9 billion.


**Use yer noggins now, chickens. Your Mama can't prove Mister and/or Missus Orr own the house with property records. We're going on information provided to Your Mama by two oft-proven very reliable sources with deep connections to the high end real estate whirl in Los Angeles and as reliable as these two are it's all just some high end real estate rumor and gossip...at least until one of the property  gossips in one of the more respectable media outlets reports it.


***Thanks to one of the children for the link to the link to photos of the new house built where Montalbán's Legoretta once stood.

60 comments:

Anonymous said...

I'm sure people in the neighborhood will be thrilled to have dozens of trucks zipping up and down for the next three years!!!

Not to mention the noise...

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Anonymous said...

I kind of always hoped this would happen to these lots and I also hope they bought the 3rd house too. How crazy would that be??

FalseProfit said...

Montalban's place was bought by son of Irish real estate tycoon Paddy McKillen. I don't remember what firm remodeled it, but the place is much improved - almost unrecognizable. I'm sure it won't be torn down, but I understand how someone with the means would tear down the others so they match this beauty.

I'll email you photos of the remodel if you want. They're no longer on the internets.

Anonymous said...

" the Walton family's total wealth hovers around $100 million, an amount greater than that of the bottom 30% of Americans".

Momma, I think you meant to type BILLION. Either way, that;s a lot of cheddar, yo.

FalseProfit said...

The architect who re-did Montalban's place also built the house next door to Dr. Dre's new place, if that helps. I don't know why the name escapes me at the moment.

BTW, another wonderful find, Mama! Amazing!

Anonymous said...

Here's a link to the rebuilt Montalban property-

http://www.mccleandesign.com/en/projects?id=62

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Anonymous said...

Oh Mama! I have also heard this exact gossip from a high baller real estate mogul in town with a fancy for smooth 20s boys! Razoring the properties is mind boggling! The crown de jewel of the crown itself. Of course the line of homes almost adjacent including Leo's on Oriole.. then the line of fabu on Thrasher/Tanager of the other adjacent street... of Walmart lady, Toby's old lair, Keanu's current lair, Ms. Megan from Will/Grace, the Winklevoss Twins, and of course Dianne Warren is oh la la delight. If you have noticed the house below Ms. Walmart #2/Dianne/Winklevoss that sits on Collingwood is every more devine! Modern with 180 views private drive and guest house. I have heard a fabu gay gent lives in this house named Fred Hassels Weiler who is a big investor of billionaire across the globe! oh my the crown, the septor,and all the jewels of the hills of 90069.

Mama I need a stick martini!

xxoo



FalseProfit said...

Yes, McClean Design was on the tip of my tongue.

4:05, Grow the fuck up. Anyone can be a skank.

Anonymous said...

Good Lord. Is the lady insane? If she wants views and space, just buy in Beverly Park.... it would be cheaper!

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WrteStufLA said...

Which Bird Street dead ends with The Crown?

Anonymous said...

bad luck for the people that bought Dido's little house that's perched just underneath the Orr Villa. noise-o-rama!

Anonymous said...

I think the big house at the top of Appian (that wraps around the east ridge has the best views in all of L.A. - IMHO

Anonymous said...

Bam!

Princess Sybil is up there on the Crown right now making her empire plans. Go 'head now, gurl. Show all them other bitches who rules the neighborhood!

Anonymous said...

The eastern house is (or rather probably was at this point) an incredibly beautiful house filled with one of the most important art collections in the world. It was designed by Bob Ray Offenhouser for Peter Paanakker (a philanthropist) and sold to Billy McCarty-Cooper, a decorator who was the boyfriend, adopted son and heir of the Picasso collector Douglas Cooper. In its heyday it didn't get better than a visit to that house with its incredible treasures and view. There were a series of sales at Christies in the early 90s, both for the Picassos as well as the important tribal art.


http://www.newyorksocialdiary.com/node/1354
http://www.newyorksocialdiary.com/node/1505

No clue what later owners have done to wreck it

Anonymous said...

@ 4:37 The best view in LA is on martin lane in trousdale estates. The house is on the equivalent of 5 lots in trousdale on a private ridge with ocean city canyon views. I had the chance to go there at night once and it was amazing. The house is a shitty tear down but could be magnificent if someone built something modern and sleek.

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Anonymous said...

Walton's don't know how to properly invest their money, watch them slowly lose everything...

Anonymous said...

That former Lionel Richie house has gotten a lot of press and is gorgeous with a gorgeous pool. Such ashame. Such glutteny.

Anonymous said...

Nothing and no one will ever trump the top of Tower Grove Dr, EVER. I've personally walked the grounds up there and many other vantage points (11101 Chalon, Hastain, Etc...) and nothing comes close, not will it ever. Tito's residence in the Palisades comes in a close second.

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Anonymous said...

the old lionel richie house was featured on beckhams coming to america

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DSoTT-iXHcw

which reminds me, since they have moved back across the pond, what is going on with their house.

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Rosco Mare said...

Someone above mentioned Peter Paanskker; his generousity along with the late Francie Brody (of Mapleton Dr in Holmby Hills in LA) is responsible for the beautiful Chinese garden at the Huntington Library in San Marino, CA.

Rosco Mare said...

Denis Tito's estate is magnificent. If I remember correctly, the gates came from the "Beverly Hillbillies" estate in Bel-Air.

Anonymous said...

Very underpublicized, just like the potential there is at the Tower Grove development. Tito's place is such a sight to behold. Never really hear much about it. I know it was used as a filming location for Wag the Dog. It has to be one of the most well situated plots across the range running from the ocean to pacific. But I'd prob still take Tower Grove.

Anonymous said...

*Ocean to Hollywood....

Anonymous said...

I hope Marie Antoinette Part 2 realizes her fortune comes from the work of millions of employees that have been mistreated by the small business-destroying monster that is Walmart.

Ann said...
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Anonymous said...

Who designed the Chase/Krail/Zhukova house"?

Anonymous said...

What I find bizarre is the amount of money people will spend on houses packed together like sardines in a can, with no surrounding space at all. As if luxury exists only in LA. Think of the many other places in the world far more desirable and pleasant; American provincialism, I have to conclude.

Anonymous said...

I imagine the Waltons will go the way of the Astors, Rockefellers and Vanderbilts in the coming years. That is to say, a gradual erosion of their wealth, as they spend, spend, spend. For example over the last ten years Walmart stock has appreciated by 52% vs 82% for the stock market as a whole and 107% for Tesco, the UK rival to Walmart. New fortunes brazenly rise up to oust the old. Bill Gates is no longer #1 (a Mexican has replaced him) and the Astors and Vanderbilts have vanished.

Anonymous said...

Did it surprise any of the children that they would buy the pie? Not this one. Its the old some of the parts is worth more than the individual or something like that. And keep in mind, these people are still getting buckets of money I imagine, because walmart is still in the family no? I get a rash just entering that store from all of the cheap China made items, so I know little about them.

lil' gay boy said...

Call me old school, but it still brings a tear to my eye to see what has become of the Montalbán/Legoretta residence.

Reagan-era '80s modern was so difficult to do right; this house did, with a distinctly modern yet timeless quality that stood the test of time. Legoretta was no slouch.

The current abode, however...well, not so much. It strikes me as a formulaic ass-hat design that will be dated in a decade. I shan't shed a tear when they plow it under -- even if they replace it with another Wal-Mart...

Pity.

What's really laughable is the remaining structure; an incoherent, Mock-Med mess -- something a toothless PowerBall winner would describe as "real purtty..."

Anonymous said...

I agree Lil Gay Boy. I remember when the Montablan (dont know how to accent like you do) property was in AD. My recollection is that if I lived in the property I would feel as though I was on vacation every single day. Of course he and his wife were a vision of sophisticated, elegant and relaxed, all rolled into one.

Anonymous said...

Wait, Li'l! Daria Zhukova's faux-Mediterranean mansion isn't on the spot where the Legoretta Montalbán mansion stood.

Anonymous said...

The guy who bought Dido's house tore it down and has been building a big ass monstrosity for the past couple years and pissing off all the neighbors. So don't feel too bad for him. Lol

Petra's said...

Pissing the money away!

Anonymous said...

I understand this area is great but the prices certain houses command still boggles me a bit.

he sold Monteban house... sold for $38.98m to who? The Irish guy was the developer who redid it and listed it as a pocket listing for $45m... who paid nearly $40m for that house?

http://www.mccleandesign.com/en/projects?id=62

Dido's house no longer exists... its the second property McLean Design did right in that area. The house sold renovated for $18.9m in November.

http://www.mccleandesign.com/en/projects?id=57

Anonymous said...

Not to mention Mclean also did the Winklevoss twins house that they purchased for %18m

http://www.mccleandesign.com/en/projects?id=50

As well as the house on Sarbonee that recently sold for $25.5m

http://www.mccleandesign.com/en/projects?id=34

McClean has done over $100m of high end contemporary trophy property spec. homes in the last 6 months. That's pretty crazy.

He also did the house on Blue Jay Way that Ryan Brown from flipping out was also somehow involved in that is on and off the market for $15.75m currently owned by hair queen I think---I forget who, momma showed it on here a few months back but I can't seem to find it.

http://www.mccleandesign.com/en/projects?id=2

muhammad ibraheem said...
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Jesse said...

I have respect for all of you LA people. I see all of these various street names mentioned, Google Maps them and get completely lost. LA is such a clusterf*ck of streets. People talk about how bad Washington DC is because it's a hub and spoke city, but LA is 100x more confusing to me.

Anonymous said...

Jesse, Washington is actually quite regular – study L'Enfant's plan. Bel Air, Holmby Hills, Brentwood, Pacific Palisades... It's all easy, it perhaps just take some practice.

Carla Ridge said...

It's not often I have nothing to add, and still feel obliged to weigh in. But special Bravo to Anon 5:48 who took the words right out of my fingers with that Offenhauser accreditaion, and the description of its contents, which will live forever in my brain. THAT was how it was DONE, gay children. RoscoMare and Lil Gay Boy, i expect nothing less from, and as usual they didnt disappoint.

The fact that what replaced the magnificent Montalban/Legoretta is already being considered for demo within two years gives one pause. One thing that made the modernist mansion so liveable was the style sense no doubt inbued in Georgina Montalban by her mother, Gladys Belzer, one of the great decorating doyennes of 50s-thru-70s Los Angeles; Her other daughter, Loretta Young, was also known for her grace and style, but in a different venue.

Anonymous said...

Keanu Reeves' main residence is now off Doheny. He's lives beside Neil Diamond.

Anonymous said...

@4:13- Haha you included the Rockefeller's in with the Astor's and Vanderbilts?? The Rockefeller wealth has certaintly not declined substantially, they're just highly secretive and have it locked up in hundreds and hundreds of trusts. They also never spent in quite the manner that the Astor's or Vanderbilts did. I believe the Rockefeller's continue to live off of the interest of the family trusts, and have yet to really touch the principal.

Anonymous said...

why is it so bad to like mediteran style? its getting like one feels ashamed of liking mediteran style :)

btw the walmart stock is more secure as walmart will always sell. microsoft is at their peak in a windows xp/7 saturated world market. the mexican guy who replaced gates, well he interconnected his banks, mobile phones of his telecomunication operators with payments in his restaurats, malls and shops. i red somewhere that he racked in like 10 billion dolar in just 2 years. so again you see, that company like wallmart can outgrow company like microsoft.

best

Anonymous said...

I have to ask the ultra-wealthy people that peruse this site that live in places like LA, is it worth it to spend that much money in those areas, especially when you get relatively little land? Would you actually live there if you did not have to work there or had business or family there?

This goes really for any of those insanely expensive areas Manhattan, London, Paris etc etc.

Anonymous said...

All I can say is I wouldn't want to live on Oriole or Doheny for the next couple years!

Anonymous said...

LA is King of the Hill living at its finest...no other can compare on earth....!

FalseProfit said...

The Biltmore Estate (largest house in the U.S.) is still owned by Vanderbilt's grandson.

Ellen Paul said...
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Terrazzo Resurfacing said...
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