LOCATION: Charleston, SC
SIZE: 3,400 square feet, 4 bedrooms, 3.5 bathrooms
YOUR MAMAS NOTES: It's not often that Your Mama gets to discuss celebrity owned real estate in the historic and architecturally tumescent South Carolina city of Charleston. We jumped at the chance after recently receiving a deliciously extensive series of covert communiques from Ivanna Tellyousomefing, our gal on the ground in the snazzier, hipper nooks and crannies of Chucktown, who let us know that Emmy winning actress Kim Delaney has put her fully renovated and completely updated late 19th-century Victorian in downtown Charleston's much-coveted South of Broad neighborhood on the market with an asking price of $1,550,000.
The stunning, Philadelphia-born brunette started out as a teen model in New York before she was cast as the wholesome teen queen Jenny Gardner on the soap story All My Children, a role that earned her a (Daytime) Emmy nomination in 1983. Miz Delaney went on to appear throughout the '80s and early '90s in a long list of forgettable movies and television series before she landed a leading role as alcoholic lady-detective Diane Russell on NYPD Blue, a plum part for which she received a (Primetime) Emmy plus two more Emmy nominations and two Golden Globe nominations. More forgettable tee-vee movies followed as well as a single season on The O.C. before she secured the part of Claudia Joy Holden on Army Wives, a presumably popular program now in its 7th season that Your Mama has heard of but never actually watched. Anyhoo...
It wasn't long after Miz Delaney was gently if unceremoniously and somewhat scandalously escorted from the stage at a fall 2011 military event honoring former defense secretary Robert Gates* that rumors began to make their way into the press that she may not return for the 7th season of Army Wives. The rumors were finally confirmed in mid November (2012) when executive producer Jeff Melvoin confirmed that Miz Delaney's character would be killed off. We can't say for sure, but if Your Mama was the betting sort—and we are definitely not—we'd wager both our long-bodied bitches, Linda and Beverly, that's probably why Miz Delaney desires to dump her downtown Charleston domicile. Donchta think?
Property records show Miz Delaney, via a generically named trust, picked up the four bedroom and 3.5 bathroom house in April 2008 for $1,250,000. The Charleston County Tax Man shows the turreted two story residence measures 2,910 square feet but listing details, which openly promote Miz Delaney's former occupation of the property, indicate it spans 3,400 square feet and includes the caveat that interested buyers might want to measure and verify the square footage for themselves if that sort of thing is important to them.
We can't imagine why anyone would want the hodgepodge collection of furnishings seen in listing photographs, but listing information states the house was "furnished with impeccable taste" and that "Most of the furnishings" are, if so desired, included "with a full price purchase." Apparently, according to this article forwarded by Ivanna Tellyousomefing, Miz Delaney herself is the person primarily if not totally responsible for the—ahem—impeccable (remaining) day-core that includes a surfboard shaped mirror in the front hall she had shipped all the way from California along with a desk covered in stingray hide and mother of pearl.
A deep, elevated and quintessentially southrun covered front porch was made for whittling away meteorologically turgid summer afternoons with a giant pitcher of spiked lemonade and the brisk staccato clickety-clack tune of the horse drawn carriages that drag tourists through the neighborhood in a stale simulacrum of the more genteel, automobile free Olden Days. The front door opens into a tight but proper side foyer with soaring ceiling, heavy duty moldings, a crystal chandelier and high gloss inlaid wood floors that Your Mama would love to believe are original.
A triple parlor—front to back: living room, dining room, family room—stretches deep into the rear of the residence where there's an obviously remodeled but ordinary cottage-style eat-in kitchen with ever-so-humble white raised panel cabinetry, comatosely ubiquitous black granite counter tops, an L-shaped center island with raised snack bar and perfectly adequate medium grade appliances. Plantation shuttered French doors open to a tree-shaded brick courtyard overlooked by at least one second floor veranda of a neighboring residence.
The second floor master bedroom, painted an almost cliche shade of baby blue, generously encompasses a bedroom and separate but adjoining private sitting room. Both rooms have fireplaces and direct access to a veranda that offers an oblique view of the thickly treed and military relic strewn White Point Garden and a head on view of the side facade and black top parking lot of the seven story Fort Sumter House, an historic hotel cum condo complex.
Listing details also reveal the house was used in 2012 as an income producing vacation rental at $8,500 per month but it's not clear how often—if at all—someone agreed to pay that amount. Ivanna Tellyousomefing, a savvy and sophisticated lady Your Mama knows watches her local real estate market like an eagle-eyed hawk, told us is about twice the going rate for an equivalent residence in the neighborhood.
Despite what some of you may have heard, Charleston, children, is a quickly up and coming and increasingly chic hot spot with hipsters, international socialites and the mildly (in)famous. Not only does the effortlessly with-it Ivanna Tellyousomefing make her home in Charleston so does former fashion designer, high fallutin' socialite, author and interior design style arbiter Carolyn Roehm who plans to spend her winters South of Broad in Charleston. Last June (2012) the very fancy and accomplished Miz Roehm, the second ex-wife of billionaire leveraged buyout bigwig Henry Kravis, dropped $2,605,000 on an elegant and imposing, 5,800 square foot Greek Revival style mini-mansion known as the Chisolm-Alston-Dupont House. She plans to give it a touch up, natch.
Several years ago New York socialite Patricia Altschul dropped $4.8 million on The Mikell House, a grand Greek Revival style pile built in 1851. Also, apparently, still in residence is former State Treasurer Thomas Ravenel, a well-known local playboy who some years back was convicted of conspiring to buy and distribute a small amount of cocaine. In 2011 Mister Ravenel publicly renounced his American citizenship because he was nine kind of pissed that as a convicted felon he is not allowed to possess a firearm. We don't know if Mister Ravenel ever really gave up his U.S. citizenship but according to Ivanna Tellyousomefing both Mister Ravenel and Miz Altschul will soon appear on a much whispered about new reality show on Bravo about the affluent gentlemen of Charleston, a show, incidentally, produced by the always dapper occasional filmmaker Whitney Sudler-Smith (Bubba and Ike and the bio-documentary Ultrasuede: In Search of Halston) who also happens to be Miz Altschul's son. Anyhoo again...
In 1997 Miz Delaney and her man-friend/fiancée, television and movie producer Alan Barnette (Hitchcock, Sliders), paid $1,900,000 for a 1928 Spanish style casa on the same tree-lined street in the affluent flats of Beverly Hills where blustery British tabloid journo turned chat show host Piers Morgan owns a 5,500+ square foot house he and the missus picked up in late 2011 for $5,362,500 and where rock-n-roll royals Sharon and Ozzy Osbourne currently lease a lovely Spanish style mini-mansion from one of L.A.'s most well known and successful real estate agents. Although most online reports say they didn't actually go their separate ways until 2006, property records reveal that in 2003 Miz Delaney bought out Mister Barnette's interest in the nearly 5,000 square foot red tile roofed abode that the L.A. County Tax Man's records indicate has five bedrooms, six bathrooms, two fireplaces, an arched porte cochere, a (detached) three car garage and a swimming pool and cabana in the backyard.
*A slurry, heavy lidded Miz Delaney stumbled along for several minutes with increasing difficulty reading her speech on the teleprompter before a smiling aide rushed out and beckoned her off-stage. Speculation amongst the celebrity gossip tongue waggers was the sultry and disheveled looking actress was drunk as a skunk. She later explained that it had been difficult week and that there were technical issues.
listing photos: The Cassina Group