Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Have A Look See Around The Manor

ABC News took some fun footage of the surprisingly lackluster interior of smoky voiced Candy Spelling's Holmby Hills house that she recently heaved on to the market with a coma inducing $150,000,000 asking price. We thought the children might like having a peep around what is thought to be the largest private residence in California.

In the video we get to see the impress the guests style entrance hall with its double height ceiling, twin curving staircases and a chandelier the size of a Volkswagen. There's also video of a Renoir painting, a paneled office/library, a game room that looks like something in the basement of a mid-priced hotel, a doll museum the size of most people's homes, a two lane bowling alley, the flowery breakfast room, the dining room where there is another stupendously sized chandelier, and the kitchen, a room we're certain Miz Spelling never enters except to grab a carton of ciggies out of the freezer.

Okay, we don't really know if Miz Spelling smokes, but her voice sounds like she's been smoking since she was pre-pubescent.

In a recent interview on ABCs 20/20 program–which we've yet to find in it's entirety online, we learned that Candy Darling does not know how exactly many rooms or bathrooms there are in her hotel sized house–a fact sure to piss off the terlit gurls, has a new book coming out called Stories from Candyland, has dozens of collections of expensive tchotchkes, has never met her granddaughter and, shockingly, claims not know where her daughter Tori lives.

She lives in a big house in Encino, hunny. Give Your Mama a ringy-dingy and we'll slip you the address.

UPDATE: Isaiah Washington

Way back in July of 2007, Your Mama discussed the Hancock Park adjacent condominium that too big for his britches ack-tor Isaiah Washington listed and sold in the aftermath of his very public and had to be humiliating heave-ho from hospital drama Grey's Anatomy.

At the time, it was posited by a real estate gossip or two that Mister Washington and family might pack their bags and head back to Houston, TX where records show they own a 4,653 square foot house on Vintage Centre Drive.

However, as it turns out, they stayed in Tinseltown and moved into a newly built and pricey rental property facing the Sherman Canal in Venice, CA. That should have been the end of that, particularly since it looked like Mister Washington was managing to right his professional boat with a recurring role on the short lived and universally panned Bionic Woman boob-toob remake as well as lead roles in two upcoming films.

But alas. It seems the drama sticks to Mister Washington like gum to the bottom of a shoe. According to Perez Hilton (via Radar), Mister Washington and family have been evicted from their Sherman Canal rental for failing to pay five months in back rent totaling $100,000. That's right children, e-vick-tuhd.

If we're being honest, and we always are, we don't feel so bad for Mister Washington. He sorta cooked his own goose in Hollywood by getting all mouthy and big headed before his star had risen high enough for him to get all mouthy and big headed. However, the man does have a wife and kids and it's unfortunate they too have to bear the brunt of this real estate brouhaha.

For those 12 children who still nurse a soft spot for Mister Washington, y'all can rest easier knowing he hasn't lost everything because it appears that he's still got that big house in Houston and his big black Mercedes G-Class car-truck thing.

Monday, March 30, 2009

UPDATE: Lenny Kravitz

The other day Your Mama discussed the Miami Beach, FL house that rock star Lenny Kravitz recently foisted on to the market with an asking price of $2,850,000 and ever since some of the children have been hissy fitting about wanting to see some photos of the interior.

Well children, pour yourself a tall gin and tonic and brace yourself puppies because here they are.

If anyone were to ask Your Mama, and of course no one did
, this kind of corny nightclub day-core applied to a private residence is exactly why Mister Kravitz can't get sell his penthouse apartment in New York City. A sensible person–that being one with eyeballs–would need to get up in here and gut the place because let's be honest, how many people actually want a metal grill catwalk that lights up from underneath in their home? Or a red lacquered living room that looks like a damn strip club? Or, lawhd have mercy, a hallway lined with mirrors and white faux-fur? Pleeze.

Now children, leave Your Mama alone for a bit because after peeping at Mister Kravitz's decorative disaster down in Miami Beach, we are in desperate need of a nerve pill and a recuperative nap.

UPDATE: We hear from the real estate lady that the photos we've linked to are not what the house currently looks like. And that's a good thing. However, the linked photos do show the house as it looked at one time. We're thrilled to hear Mister Kravitiz has pulled back the decorative reins on this house.

In Other...

...real estate news about women who date rich and powerful men, Manuela Herzer, the much younger and former female companion of troubled Tinesltown tycoon Sumner Redstone, has purchased the Mulholland Drive compound of Lance Bass, the bug eyed ex-boy bander turned every one's favorite Hollywood homosexual. We tease. Like everyone else, we like Miss Bass.

Property records reveal that Miz Herzer paid $3,850,000 for the hill top estate that includes a total of 5 bedrooms and 8 bathrooms, two swimming pools, a guest house and spectacular views of both the San Fernando Valley and the glittery lights of Tinseltown. Unless the records are wrong, poor Lance Bass took a bit of a financial bath on this sale since the purchase price is slightly less than the $3,880,000 records show he paid for the place back in October of 2003.

Mister Bass had been living in New York City recently, but to be honest, we're not actually sure of his real estate wherabouts at this point.

Unfortunately, Your Mama knows next to nothing about Miz Herzner. She's reported to be several decades younger than Mister Redstone–who apparently likes his ladee friends young enough to be his daughter–and in late 2008, amidst his seemingly amicable dee-vorce from the also much younger Paula Fortunato, Mister Redstone was twice spotted dining about town with Miz Herzer sparking rumors that there might be a reconciliation between the former lovebirds.

According to both Our Fairy Godmother in Beverly Hills and proven with property records, in November of 2008 the recently kicked to the curb Miz Fortunato forked over $4,150,000 of her settlement money to buy a 5 bedroom and 9 bathroom house on Liebe Drive in Beverly Hills. Not bad for a gal who was a modestly paid 40-year old New York City school teacher before hooking up with her octogenarian ex-huzband in 2003.

Live Like L'Wren Scoot

SELLER: L'Wren Scott
LOCATION: Tuxedo Terrace, Los Angeles, CA
PRICE: $999,999
SIZE: 1,712 square feet, 3 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms
DESCRIPTION: Celebrity-owned, but easy to show French Normandy Castle built in 1926 by Fred Hansen. The utmost in privacy and seclusion, yet minutes from the heart of Hollywood, this home is like a fairy tale come to life! Two secured entries off of street lead to a garden courtyard that feels like an English countryside. Privacy, seclusion, out-of-area experience are in abundance here. Perfect for artists, writers, entertainers or your client who simply wants to enjoy being home.

YOUR MAMAS NOTES: Considering this house has been on the market since July of 2008 and considering that the listing text boldly announces it is "celebrity owned," it's somewhat surprising all us nosy real estate gossips had not already sniffed this one out. Now that Rolling Stone senior citizen Mick Jagger and his ladee-friend L'Wren Scott are reportedly living in sin in London, Mizz Scott has less use for her modest–if not inexpensive–hideaway tucked into the hills of the Bronson Canyon area of Los Angeles and currently listed for sale with an asking price of $999,999.

Like a large number of gorgeous gals who wind up arm in arm with rock stars, Miss Scott started up her ladder of fame as a cat walker who worked her 6'4" former Mormon stuff back in the 1980s for fancy fashion designers such as Chanel and Thierry Mugler. In the mid-1990s, Miss Scott decamped for the sunny west coast of the U.S. of A. where at first she headed up PR for Prada and then became a noted and in demand stylist to the stars dressing a-list ladees like Nicole Kidman, Julianne Moore and Ellen Barkin. Along the way, Miss Scott did up the costumes for a few movies, met Mick Jagger and then reinvented her professional life once again. In the last few years, Miss Scoot has transformed herself into a fashion designer with the same red carpet clientele she enjoyed as a celebrity stylist. It's a good thing Miss Scott fraternizes with the demimonde children because those are the only damn people who can afford her $510 Bateau neck tank tops and $2,875 satin bustle jackets.

Anyhoo, property records show that Miss Scott purchased her turreted Tuxedo Terrace house in June of 1996 for $255,000. Oh mercy children, remember the good ol' days when you could still pick up a starter home in Los Angeles for well under $500,000? Nowadays you gotta be well employed and reasonably rich to even think about buying a modest house like this considering that the mortgage alone will be well over four grand a month.

Records and listing information shows the French Normandy style house was built in 1926 by a gentleman Your Mama has never heard of named Fred Hansen. The house measures in at just 1,712 square feet and listing information indicates the house stands three stories tall and includes 3 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms.

There are, additionally, a living room with a vaulted ceiling, a formal dining room with stained glass windows and a small, lightly updated kitchen where there does not appear to be enough counter space to even make tuna fish sandwich let alone an actual mean. None the less, the kitchen does have a certain sort of relaxed, cottage charm and a magnificent mint green vintage stove. The not particularly large master bedroom suite includes a small bathroom with a soaking tub that appears to be molded from concrete and has a tiled niche for all Miss Scott's lotions, potions and bubble baths.

Outdoor spaces include a secluded and walled courtyard at the front and an overgrown and elegantly wild backyard garden that we think our attitudinal pussy cat Sugar would find a wonderland of vermin hunting.

Photos show the home retains much of it's original charm such as the carved stone fireplace in the living room and has been imbued with Miss Scott's personal style, which Your Mama might describe as a kind of bohemian chic meets a Moorish manor house meets the Paris flea markets sort of thing. Clearly this is not a home ready for the pages of Architectural Digest, but it does look like the sort of place put together someone secure enough in their decorative joie de vivre that they don't really care what's considered to be the latest and greatest in day-core depicted on the glossy pages of magazines like Metropolitan Home.

In addition to their shared London digs, Your Mama presumes Mister Jagger has given Miss Scott the keys to his many other homes. Although we can not confirm ownership of each them, Mister Jagger's long list of residences is said to include an apartment in Manhattan, a French chateau near Tours called La Fourchette, a two-floor flat next door to the 26-room townhouse in the Richmond Hill area of London (which Jerry Hall got in the dee-vorce), and two adjacent villas on the super swank island of Mustique. Your Mama read somewhere that Mister Jagger also has a 5-bedroom house in the Hollywood Hills, but we can't confirm that so don't go spreading that around like you know what yer talking about.

Friday, March 27, 2009

Don Imus's Surprisingly Dignified Digs

SELLER: Don Imus
LOCATION: Beachside Avenue, Westport, CT
PRICE: $30,000,000
SIZE: 10,000 square feet (approx.), 6 bedrooms, 6.5 bathrooms
DESCRIPTION: Direct waterfront estate on Westport's premier "Gold Coast." 10,000 sf post Greco-Georgian main house built by Hobbs Construction. New 2 bedroom guest house and renovated 2 br gate house. Total of 10 garage spaces. 215' of private beach.

YOUR MAMAS NOTES: Your Mama is a little late to the fair on this one having already been discussed first in The Wall Street Journal and then again by Mister Big Time. But we're weighing in anyway because seldom do we get to discuss insanely expensive properties in Connecticut and seldom are they owned by such a controversial ignoramus. Don Imus, the grumpy cowboy hat wearing radio host who has nearly killed his career in the last couple of years making repeated and obnoxious racial slurs...on the damn air, has put his Long Island Sound front estate in Westport, CT on the market with an impressive asking price of $30,000,000. Westport, CT is, of course, the same waspy enclave made famous by Miz Martha Stewart, who only pretends to be a wasp. The matron of impossibly perfect housewifery shacked up and filmed her television program at Turkey Hill, her long time estate which she's done sold now that she's living her post-prison, high-wasp lifestyle on a big farm north of New York City.

Anyhoo, property records and reports reveal Mister Imus purchased his 4-acre estate on Beachside Avenue in 1997 for $4,600,000. Listing information indicates the Mister Imus' mansion was built in 2000, so presumably this was either a vacant lot at the time of purchase or he ripped down the existing house and built his own dream house. Whatever the case, according to listing information, the 16-room so-called "Greco-Georgian" style pile measures approx. 10,000 square feet and includes 6 bedrooms and 6.5 bathrooms, 8 fireplaces, garaging for 9 or 10 cars, 9-foot ceilings, a formal dining room, great room, family room, gore-may kitchen with breakfast nook and pantry, a library/study, an office/computer room, a recreation room and a year tax bill of $131,863.

The grounds include a 2 bedroom gate house as well as a newly built 2 bedroom guest house. There does not appear to be either a swimming pool or a tennis court, but there is 215-feet of water front.

According to Mister Big Time, this is not the first time Mister Imus has tossed this big house into the real estate rodeo ring. Apparently, back in 2005, the mouthy and opinionated radio icon wanted to sell the house and listed it at $30,000,000.

We find Mister Imus and his radio ways to be rather repellent and since it makes us feel a little dirty to even discuss him, the only thing we're going to say about the day-core of Mister Imus's digs is that they are far more dignified than we would have expected from a man who has shown a stunning lack of decorum and class the last few years. None the less, since fair is fair, we'd be completely remiss if we did not acknowledge that Mister Imus, who very recently announced that he has been diagnosed with stage two prostate cancer, has spent a great deal of time, money and energy founding and running their 4,000 acre cattle ranch in New Mexico where children with cancer and and blood disorders are invited to experience what it's like to live and work on a functioning cattle ranch. Ain't nothing wrong with that.

Records reveal that Mister Imus also owns a penthouse apartment on Central Park West that he's owned since at least 1994. Records indicate Mister and Missus Imus also own a maisonette style unit in the same building which they purchased in February of 2006 for $2,030,000.

Lenny Kravitz Lists Another One

SELLER: Lenny Kravtiz
LOCATION: Biscayne Point Circle, Miami Beach, FL
PRICE: $2,850,000
SIZE: 5,717 square feet, 3 bedrooms, 3 full and 2 half bathrooms
DESCRIPTION: Amazing estate home, point lot in guard gated Biscayne Point. Ultra modern luxury on a large 12,000 sq. ft. lot w/ unparalleled wide open bay views, with over 1,100 sq. ft. of tiled dock, and 100 feet of waterfront. Everything done to perfection, custom marble baths, polished concrete floors, custom wall of glass totally opens the large living area to incredible water views. Backyard is resort like w/ pool & spa, amazing dock area.

YOUR MAMAS NOTES: Poor Lenny Kravtiz. The pierced, tattooed and dirty looking singer/songwriter turned interior decorator has been having a bitch of a time selling his Manhattan penthouse apartment which he's had on and off the market for years. The 6,000 square foot nightclub-like doo-plex on SoHo's cobbled Crosby Street has had asking prices as sky high as $19,500,000 and as low as $12,500,000. Currently the five bedroom party palace carries an asking price of $14,995,000. Whatever the damn price may be, Your Mama recommends the listing agent discourage any prospective buyers from running a black light up in there because lawhd have mercy, who knows what kinds of fluids would turn up and where. It gives us the shivers just to think of it.

Anyhoo, in addition to the New York digs and a pad in gay Paree–where our recently nuptialed friend Falsetta Knockers and her louche literary lover/huzband are honeymooning as we type this missive–Mister Kravitz has long maintained a real estate base in Miami Beach, FL. In May of 2005 he sold his 9 bedroom Mediterranean style pile on Sunset Island's W. 25th Street for $14,500,000. However, that was not his only home in the Miami area. Property records show that back in December of 1996 Mister Kravitz picked up a waterfront sprawler for $725,000 which, thanks to Donna Summer, we've learned he recently listed with an asking price of $2,850,000.

Listing information for the Biscayne Point Circle residence is slim, and Your Mama was able to scare up only an itty bitty bit of information about the the recently renovated Kravitz krib which measures 5,717 square feet and has three bedrooms and 3 full and 2 half bathrooms. Out back a new swimming pool hangs over the Biscayne Bay where Mister Kravitz (or the new home owner) can park a big boat.

As far as we know, Mister Kravitz continues to maintain and run a two story, 2,500 square foot state of the art recording studio in the penthouse of Miami Beach's The Setai, a swanky ocean front condo-hotel located on bizzy Collins Avenue.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Candy Spelling Officially Asks for $150,000,000

SELLER: Candy Spelling
LOCATION: S. Mapleton Drive, Los Angeles, CA
PRICE: $150,000,000
SIZE: 52,503 square feet, 11 bedrooms, 16 bathrooms (as per assessor)

YOUR MAMAS NOTES: Fetch yer nerve pills, pour a tall gin and tonic and hold on to your britches children, because Candy Spelling's 123-room Holmby Hills monster mansion has officially and finally hit the open market with a knee buckling and record breaking asking price of $150,000,000.

Although records we accessed show a purchase date in December of 1991, a recent report in The Wall Street Journal states that Missus Spelling and her now deceased boob-toob producer huzband Aaron Spelling purchased the approximately 5 acre property on swish S. Mapleton Drive in the early 1980s. We're gonna believe the Wall Street Journal, but whatever the case, the couple proceeded to raze the former home of the legendary Bing Crosby and erect a massive, multi-winged monument to their wealth which they called The Manor.

Records on file with the County of Los Angeles show The Widow Spelling's hotel-sized house measures in at 52,503 square feet with 11 bedrooms and 16 bathrooms. However, those numbers are somewhat in dispute as The Wall Street Journal puts the residential beast at 57,000 square feet and during a televised interview and tour of her palatial pile poor Candy Darling herself couldn't remember if her huge house has 23 or 26 bathrooms. It would seem that only the terlit staff knows precisely how many poopers are on the property.

Some of the only in a mega-mansion features of The Manor include the bowling alley in the basement, a beauty parlor and a barber shop in the 17,000 square foot attic, a gift wrapping room, doll museum, a home gym, a wine cellar and wine tasting room, a humidity-controlled silver storage room, a room just for the China, and a leviathan living room that does double duty as a screening room where the screen rises up out of the floor.

The fastidiously maintained and gated grounds include a major motor court with a spitting fountain in the center, covered parking for a fleet of fancy automobiles, meandering pathways that circle the property, formal gardens including a rooftop rose garden, a swimming pool and spa complex and a tennis court which we like to imagine Miz Spelling has never even seen let alone used.

Miz Spelling's attorney Stephen Goldberg told The Wall Street Journal that ever since his client announced she coughed up a staggering $47,000,000 for a yet to be completed 16,000 square foot doo-plex penthouse in Century City, the wildly rich widow has had about 12 calls from interested and qualified buyers.

Your Mama assumes these calls and queries are coming from the same dozen or so qualified buyers that have peeped and poked around the insanely decadent rooms of Suzanne Saperstein's $125,000,000 Holmby Hills behemoth for which it is rather bizarrely rumored that scantily clad superstar Mariah Carey has made an offer. We don't believe it, but that's another story.

Anyhoo, only time will tell how long it will take for The Widow Spelling to unload her big house, at what price and to which bizness baron, mogul, magnate or foreign potentate. If the ladee gets anywhere near the $150,000,000 asking price it will most certainly set a record for the largest amount of money paid for a single family residence in the United States.

Miz Spelling is still trying to sell both of the homes she owns in the gated Century Woods community which lies in the shadows of the towers of Century City. One is an 8,424 square foot Faux-Tuscan sitting on a double lot with 5 bedrooms, 5 bathrooms and an asking price of $7,895,000 and the other a quasi-French farmhouse sort of thing measuring 4,843 square feet with 5 bedrooms, 5.5 bathrooms and an asking price of $4,795,000.

photos: Pacific Coast News

James Perse's Pad in The Birds

SELLER: James Perse
LOCATION: Oriole Drive, Los Angeles, CA
PRICE: $3,750,000 (reduced from $4,995,000)
SIZE: 2,235 square feet, 1 bedroom, 1.5 bathroom
DESCRIPTION: ...This residence designed by James Perse exemplifies the Southern California lifestyle: flr. to ceiling walls of glass provide abundant light & seamless indoor-outdoor flow, fantastic master w/ FP, huge walk-in closet & luxurious bath, lrge open eat-in kitch. w/ stainless steel appliances, wonderful open living rm w/ FP & wet bar opening out to private lush landscaped grounds, pool, spa & outdoor shower.

YOUR MAMAS NOTES: Last night, as we were watching those skinny bitches strut their wannabe model stuff on that dee-lishusly undignified America's Next Top Model program, we were also perusing the newly available properties in the Bird Streets high above Los Angeles' Sunset Strip. It wasn't long before our beady little eyeballs beheld a re-worked ranch directly across the street from the architectural tour de force of Ricardo Montalban, may he rest in peace, and around the corner from Leo DiCaprio's recently remodeled crib. As it turns out (and as the listing so boldly declares), the desirably located property is owned and being offered by t-shirt tycoon James Perse.

Unless you're in the tax bracket where you can comfortably afford to fork over more than fifty bucks for a cotton t-shirt or 145 clams for a pair of cotton cargo shorts, you might not know who our James Perse is or how he can afford to bed down in the Birds. See children, young Mister Perse was born into Los Angeles fashion royalty. His fatherm, Tommy Perse, is the man behind Maxfield, the super swank Melrose Avenue boo-teek that has been selling high priced and fashion forward duds to rich and famous folks since before the dawn of time. For those the children who think Los Angeles is a fashion wasteland, Your Mama suggests you haul your heiny to Maxfield and check out all the dee-voon tailored Dries Van Noton and gloriously avant Comme des Garçons garments that fly off the rack and into black shopping bags that get loaded into idling automobiles that cost as much as a damn house in Middle America.

Anyhoo, starting when he was just a baby-faced 22 years old, young Mister Perse followed his father into the rag trade selling pricey pared down basic pieces to celebrities and other folks with black Amex cards and money to burn. Although Your Mama is certain some of you will have all sorts of sassy and snarky things to say about people who plunk down $295 for a thermal lined hoody, we're also quite sure that Mister Perse will pay you no mind because whether y'all think his relaxed fit boxer shorts are worth 28 bucks a pair or not, he's managed without your financial assistance to successfully expanded his casual clothing lines into an small empire that includes 9 architecturally minimal boo-teeks stretching from the shimmering shores of Malee-boo to the casually glizty streets of East Hampton.

Property records show Mister Perse picked up his Oriole Drive property in May of 1998 for $875,000. Records on file with the County of Los Angeles show that the 2,235 square foot house includes 2 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms. However, listing information shows there are just 1 bedroom and 1.5 bathrooms. That's right children, 1 bedroom and 1.5 bathrooms. Let's just pause for a moment and try to get out mind around the staggering optimism and impressive real estate cajones it takes to list a one bedroom and 1.5 bathroom house for almost five million dollars in a luxury market that is, by all accounts, less than brisk.

The 1/3 acre property is properly gated and fully hedged for privacy and listing information reveals the wonderfully pared down pad features walls of floor to ceiling sliders that open every room to the out doors. The crisp, clean lined and barely furnished living room has a fireplace, several seating areas, shiny blond wood floors, and a wet bar. The living room leads directly into to the master bedroom at the rear of the house where there is a second fireplace, more floor to ceiling glass sliders opening to the pool deck, a large walk in closet and a bathroom with a shower large enough for Mister Perse to scrub down with a few friends should he desire.

The minimally designed kitchen with its white cabinets, black counter tops and blond wood breakfast bar is open to the dining room where Mister Perse has placed a picnic table painted a gleaming black. We know the children are going to skewer us for saying so, but Your Mama loves us a picnic table moved indoors to become dining room table.

The long, low and lean house wraps around the rear terrace where there is a simple rectangular swimming pool, spa and a good sized grassy area. Somewhere, according to listing information, is an outdoor shower. For those not familiar with the pleasures of showering outdoors, you are missing out on one of life's great simple pleasures.

Mister Perse has admirably adhered to a strict palette of black, white, cement grey, grass green and blond wood in his minimally designed digs. While Your Mama goes weak in the knees over such decorative restraint, we fear that things have gotten a wee to minimal even for us. Perhaps all of Mister Perse's personal effects have been removed from the premises, but we feel strongly this house would benefit greatly from some thought provoking art hanging on the expansive white walls and a few stacks of books and magazines tossed about would make it look like someone actually lives up in here as opposed to just occupying it.

Presumably, the asking price of Mister Perse's property is partly justified by its stellar location at the white hot center of the Bird Streets. But given that there's just one bedroom here, any new owner will need to be single, childless and/or prepared to spend another few hundred thousand adding additional bedrooms and bathrooms. Your Mama wishes Mister Perse all the luck in the world unloading this one because, we fear, he's going to need all the luck he can get selling a one bedroom house at this price.

P.S. As noted by one of the children and despite the language in the listing description, this house was indeed did up and done up for Mister Perse by an architecture firm called Standard.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Mel B Is Moving On

SELLER: Melanie Brown
LOCATION: Mount Olympus Drive, Los Angeles, CA
PRICE: $2,999,999
SIZE: 3,476 square feet, 5 bedrooms, 4 bathrooms
DESCRIPTION: Magnificent contemp masterpiece surrounded by a tropical oasis. Purchased in 2007, this ultra chic showplace has undergone close to a $1m make over. Lush landscaping & 8 camera security system w/ night vision create complete security & privacy. W/ a saline pool, spa, 3 waterfalls, state of the art entertainment system, outdoor living room w/ flat screen & Viking outdoor kitchen, this is resort living at its finest. Sweeping city & ocean views, art walls, gourmet kitchen & open flr plan.

YOUR MAMAS NOTES: Earlier today, Your Mama discussed the moronic rumors about Dave and Vicki Beckham selling their Beverly Hills house to that wild eyed Tom Crooz character and his mousy wifey Katie and we're going to continue with the Spice Girls theme this afternoon and discuss the Los Angeles house that Melanie Brown, otherwise known as Scary Spice, otherwise known as Mel B, just listed with an asking price of $2,999,999.

Miz B first climbed high on the elusive ladder of fame as a member of the Spice Girls girl group but in 2006/07 she elevated her celebrity quotient into the stratosphere by mixing it up tranny luvin' Eddie Murphy and becoming one of his many baby mamas. Miz B and her crack team of publicists and managers managed to successfully parlay her Eddie Murphy baby mama drama into a much coveted spot the sparkling stage of that hugely popular but upsetting to Your Mama's sensibilities Dancing With The Stars program. Miz B's next professional engagement is, apparently, in Sin City where the singing and dancing diva is scheduled to perform–in her underwear–in a risque and "woman empowering" review called Peep Show.

Property records and previous reports reveal that Miz B bought her contemporary crib on Mount Olympus Drive in August of 2007 for an even-steven $3,000,000. Given that the property is now priced exactly one dollar less than she paid, she's obviously going to take a substantial financial hit, particularly when you factor in the near one million clams listing information claims Miz B put into the place in renovations and re-dos.

Although rich and famous folks are notoriously fickle in their real estate comings and goings, Your Mama can't help but wonder why Miz B would choose to move now, in this rather unstable real estate market in which she's going to lose a big bundle of buckage. Babbling Babette, one of our more adorable tattle tales, whispered in our big ear that Miz B and her man-mate Stephen Belafonte are eager to sell so they can move to a house with more room for their combined quartet of children produced from three previous relationships. Your Mama thinks it's really very sweet of them to think of their children's best interests this way, but didn't they have four children when they bought this damn place in 2007? Seems like somebody was not using their noggin when they should have been.

Anyhoo, listing information shows the two story residence measures 3,476 square feet and includes 5 bedrooms and 4 bathrooms. Additional rooms include an open plan living, dining and kitchen area with white walls, chocolate stained wood floors and cabinetry, walls of windows that slide open and a full suite of high-grade if somewhat chintzy-sized stainless steel appliances.

Among other bits and pieces, the near million dollar make-over included swapping the existing staircase out for a curving and nearly transparent glass and steel contraption that would befuddle and scare the bejeezis out of our long bodied bitches Linda and Beverly who are, bless their tiny hearts, having issues with their eyesight. Miz B and Mister Belafonte also expanded the second floor deck the full length of the front facing three car garage where they've placed an outdoor pool table. Christ almighty children, who knew you could buy a pool table able to withstand the elements? Not Your Mama nor the Dr. Cooter, that's for sure.

It also appears to Your Mama that Miz B replaced the old master bathroom with an all glass and grey veined marble affair that has more in common stylistically with a high-toned mausoleum than it does with a master bathroom. Don't misunderstand Your Mama, we love us some tombstone grade marble as much as the next person, but too much of a good thing is, well, too much of a good thing. We might have recommended the nice gay marble loving decorator have left the wall behind the floating sink cabinet marble free. But that's just us. Some of you children may think bathing and doing the dirty bizness in a damn crypt is cool.

The backyard is really a large courtyard at the side of the house and includes an amoeba shaped saline swimming pool and spa surrounded by some nifty flag stone terracing, an outdoor kitchen full of Viking brand appliances, three waterfalls (when 1 would probably be enough), and and outdoor living room complete with, natch, a flat screen boob toob and a whole bunch of white furniture.

The last feature of the house that will appeal to all the paranoid children is the state of the art security system which features eight video cameras equipped with night vision.

Your Mama wishes Miz B all the best in her new show and her next home because although we find her career path to be a little icky, we find we always like her immensely when we see her interviewed on the tee vee, something we can't say about very many famous people.

A Little Real Estate Crazy With Your Morning Coffee

Once it was confirmed that British ex-pats Dave and Vicki Beckham are indeed packing up their tea sets and moving to Milan, it was only a matter of time before the real estate crazy train that surrounds their every move got underway.

The most recent real estate rumors swirling around the internets are that teeny tiny Tom Crooz and his mousy wifey Katie want to buy Sexy and The Spice Gurl's Beverly Hills mansion. The reports seem to stem from a story in Star Magazine which we can't locate online and which reported that the Crooz couple want to buy the Beckham's 6 bedroom and 9 bathroom house and use it as a damn guest house. The article quoted someone as saying, "They would use the place for visitors, but they don't want to spend much more than $15 million."

Queen, pleeze! That's just preposterous. Your Mama is seriously skeptical of all these unsubstantiated canards and we suggest the children also look at them stories through squinted eyes and furrowed brows because above and beyond it's sheer unbelievability factor, there are some glaring errors that toss a dark cloud of suspicion over then entire story.

Firstly, A little look-see into the property records clearly reveals that Sexy and the Spice Gurl paid $18,200,000 for their 6 bedroom and 9 bathroom mansion and not the reported amount of $22,000,000. There's really no excuse for that error unless the rumor was printed without even the appearance of fact checking.

Secondly, when the British Beckhams bought their single story sprawler in the Spring of 2007, the pound was way up and the dollar was way down, which means they'd be fools not to grab a deal at fifteen million clams because, with the exchange rate at the time, they really only paid like 10 or 12 million max for the place so 15 million would put a couple million in their pocket.

Thirdly, A quick perusal of an easily accessible internet map shows that Tom Crooz and his posse of handlers, minders, family members and Thetans do not live "around the corner" from Sexy and the Spice Gurl. The Beckham's 13,149 square foot house sits up a long driveway off San Ysidro Drive, which is west of Coldwater Canyon Drive and the Crooz clan's crib sits up a long driveway off Calle Vista Drive which is east of Coldwater Canyon. It might only take 5 minutes to drive their Bentleys back and forth to each other's houses for Saturday night Scrabble tournaments, but they are most definitely not "around the corner" from each other.

It makes sense that Sexy and the Spice Gurl want to sell their house and maybe those crazy Crooz's do want to buy a fancy guest house near their own ritzy residence. However, we'd bet our long bodied bitches Linda and Beverly that the Crooz's are not buying the Beckham's Beverly Hills house.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Another Celebrity Real Estate Columnist...Gone

Your Mama regrets to inform the children that Los Angeles Times celebrity real estate columnist Ann Brenoff has been relieved of her post. Just about one year ago, the 15+ year veteran of the L.A. Times took the reins of the Hot Property column from the legendary Ruth Ryon and successfully expanded the popular weekly print column to include daily blog posts that were often food and fodder for our own little online endeavor.

Miz Brenoff will continue to provide juicy tidbits to the paper until April 17. After that, our sources say the fate of the Hot Property column hangs in the balance and it remains to be seen if the beleaguered paper will make the unfortunate choice to fold up the column for good or if they'll ferret out another well connected celebrity real estate obsessed writer to carry on what is surely one of the most popular, if fluffy, feature columns at the paper.

Whatever happens, please join with Your Mama and raise a glass of expensive bubbly to Miz Brenoff for rocking our collective celebrity real estate world every damn day of the week.

Mama Maloof (allegedly) Sells to Slash

SELLER: Colleen Maloof
BUYER: Saul and Perla Hudson
LOCATION: Clerendon Road, Beverly Hills, CA
PRICE: $8,985,000 (asking)
DESCRIPTION: Within the prestigious guard-gated enclave of Mulholland Estates resides this striking Tuscan inspired villa which offers the finest in estate living. A true entertainers dream come true with such upgrads as 4 dishwashers, 4 ovens, 2 SubZeros, 2 additional refrigerated drawers, 2 kitchen center islands, climate-controlled wine cellar, game room, theater and more! Relax beneath the covered loggia w/ fireplace, custom heating and lighting system, lush landscaping and enchanting vistas.

YOUR MAMAS NOTES: Since it was written about in such places as the Hot Properties column in the Los Angeles Times way back in October of 2008, it's certainly not news that Colleen Maloof listed her mansion in the guard gated Mulholland Estates community which sits high in the hills above Beverly Hills and is, technically, part of Sherman Oaks. It's also no secret among real estate people who push property in the Platinum Triangle that the "Tuscan inspired villa" recently went into escrow and vanished from the public pages of the MLS.

For those who do not know, Miz Maloof is the well to do widow of big time booze distributor George Maloof and the mother of Joe, Gavin, George Jr., Phil and Adrienne Maloof who together run The Maloof Companies, a diversified family business that distributes booze, owns the Sacramento Kings professional basketball team, owns several hotels and casinos including The Palms in Las Vegas, produces some reality tee-vee programs such as the jaw droppingly horrific Living Lohan, and holds a huge amount of shares in banking behemoth Wells Fargo.

Anyhoo, as it turns out, the identity of the big name buyer of Miz Maloof's mansion was recently revealed to Your Mama. Early last week we were chit-chatting with the impossibly well informed Nelly Knowsitall who off-handedly mentioned that the heavily worked over Widow Maloof was selling her house to heavy metal guitar maestro Saul Hudson, otherwise known as Slash.

Mister Slash has been fodder for all the real estate gossips for quite some time. Y'all will recall that in 2007 he sued a real estate agent for misrepresenting the number of parking spaces at a house he purchased (and has since sold) in the Hollywood Hills. Your Mama had long been hearing whispers and real estate rumors that Mister Slash and his wifey Perla had sold their Studio City house and were rooting around for new digs. In fact, several months ago we heard from a talkative tipster who whispered in Your Mama's big ol' ear that the Hudsons were buying British pop star Robbie Williams' Mulholland Estates mansion.

That information has turned out to be a bunch of hooey. However, for what it's worth, Mister Williams' mansion does sit directly across the street from The Widow Maloof's mansion. It's also next door to the house boob-toob bench warmer Judge Greg Mathis has on the market for $5,900,000 and just a few doors down from Paris Hilton house, which probably isn't much of a selling point for many multi-million dollar buyers but clearly did not bother Mister and Mrs. Hudson. Other rich and famous inhabitants of the Mulholland Estates community includes Vanna White, Charlie Sheen and Brooke Mueller, and billionaire Tom Gores who happens to be trying to unload a monstrous piece of vacant land in Bel Air for a bank account busting $65,000,000.

But we digress...again. Property records show Miz Maloof forked over eight million clams for her "Tuscan inspired villa" in February of 2006 and listing information we obtained shows that she first listed the 10,971 square foot manse in May of 2008 with a rather optimistic asking price of $13,995,000. Miz Maloof soon got serious about selling and chopped the asking price to $10,200,000 and then got even more serious and slashed the asking price to $8,985,000 before it was, according to Miz Knowsitall, snatched up by Mister and Missus Slash who have yet to close on the property.

Listing information shows the house measures a hefty 10,971 square feet and includes 7 bedrooms and 8 bathrooms. Other amenities in the three story residence include an entrance hall designed to impress the guests and the Chinese food delivery man, a formal living room with disturbingly off-center cabinetry surrounding the fireplace, a formal dining room, game room, temperature controlled wine cellar, a home thee-ay-ter with puffy,crap colored leather recliners, and a colossal kitchen that opens to the breakfast and family rooms and features two work islands, two SubZero refrigerators, 4 overns and 4 damn dishwashers. That's right, four.

The modestly sized backyard entertainment areas includes a lounging loggia with an outdoor fireplace, a patch of grass for the pooches, a simple rectangular swimming pool and spa, a built in barbecue center and a view of a bunch of palm trees.

In addition to Mama Maloof, a couple of the Maloof children have recently put their Los Angeles estates on the market including Phil whose Bev Hills house was first listed at $16,995,000 and is currently listed at a much lower $10,865,000, and Joe whose Brentwood bedsit is currently listed at $4,200,000, reduced from $4,995,000.

Your Mama Hears...

...Okay children, we confess. We didn't hear this, we saw it on gossip Goliath X17 who reported that Grammy winning Barbadian babe Rihanna spent part of her weekend looking for a new LaLa Land crib to call home. We don't know all of the pricey properties she viewed but we do know she had a look-see at at a 5 bedroom and 4 bathroom house on Sunset View Drive that measures over 5,000 square feet, has an asking price of $4,495,000, features a blinding and disturbing wet bar slathered in mirrored subway tiles in the living room, an infinity edged pool looking out over the lights of Los Angeles and Cameron Diaz as a neighbor.

According to our source Mirakle Mike, Miss Rihanna currently rents digs in the hills above Los Feliz. Listing information we were able to secure thanks to Babbling Babbette shows her temporary hideaway on Tryon Road sits privately up a long gated driveway, measures 4,545 square feet with 4 bedrooms and 4.5 bathrooms. Fun features include a media room on the lowest level, Rosewood cabinets and kelly green glass counter tops in the kitchen and a gigantic master suite with sitting area, bedroom, fireplace, and a party-sized shower that's larger than most studio apartments in downtown Manhattan.

It is none of Your Mama's beeswax, has not a thing to do with real estate and since we were not there, we do not know for sure what went down in that stoopid rented Lamborghini between Miss Rihanna and Mister Chris Brown on that fateful night. However, Your Mama is a bizzy-body and as such would like to reiterate what that Oprah ladee–who, contrary to common belief, does not walk on the damn water–said to Miss Rihanna about her current romantic situation: We know that you are a teen aged woman in love and all that crap, but if that "man" you call yer boyfriend put his hands on you in anger and busted up your lip and scared you enough to go to the damn po-po station to file a report, he will do it again no matter how many times he tells you he will not. Real men do not beat up on women.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Sliced, Diced Chopped, Slashed, Hacked and Shaved

We apologize once again for our tardiness and lack of attention. Not only was today a travel day, but it's taken Your Mama a couple of days to recover from the dee-voon debauchery that ensued at the wild and wonderful wedding of our finely feathered friend Falsetta Knockers and her louche literary lover. Besides, whether y'all like it or not, we're entitled to a few days of child-freedom without having to endure a bunch of bitching from morons upset that we did not put something up on a damn Sunday. Pleeze. Get a damn grip. When y'all start paying our mortgage you can start running your mouth about our comings and goings. Until then, we do not want to hear it. Anyhoo...

Today, Your Mama is going to go slightly off topic and discuss a number of high priced properties that have recently undergone heavy duty price cuts. Your Mama knows this topic will unleash a fuming and vengeful army of Chicken Littles who will holler and howl about how the real estate sky is falling and blather on endlessly about how the global economy appears to be going to hell in Joe Cassano and Timothy Geithner's hand baskets of complex financial instruments. But a case can be made that these properties were priced too high even for the white hot markets of 2004 and 2005 and their lower asking prices are simply owners having a necessary real estate reality check about the value of their residential assets. Whatever your stand on the matter may be, it's increasingly clear that many owners of exuberantly priced properties who actually want to sell them have had to start shaving, slashing, chopping and hacking at the asking prices of their prodigiously priced real estate white elephants.

We cherry picked properties from the deep recesses of our gin soaked mind and are well aware our little list of properties with recent price cuts is far from complete, so do not go workin' Your Mama's last nerve with some self righteous donkey crap about how we missed this property or failed to include that price cut. We know. So it's not going to be very interesting news to have y'all screaming about it.

Let's start down in the quicksand of Florida's sinking real estate markets where former professional golfer and Chris Evert wooer Greg Norman has reduced the asking price of Tranquility, his jinormous Jupiter Island estate, from a teeth chattering $65,000,000 to a still staggering $47,000,000. The 7.4-acre estate was first hoisted on to the open market sometime in late 2007 and, according to listing information, the ocean front property also includes 370-feet of Intracoastal Waterway frontage, a 140-foot long dock, 17,825 square feet of air conditioned space spread across 6 structures that contain a grand total of 9 bedrooms, 11 full and 3 half bathrooms. Not bad for a dude who swats a little white ball around the lawn.

Up the right coast, the late Brooke Astor's legendary doo-plex apartment was first put on the market in a blaze of publicity in May of 2008 with a not entirely unexpected asking price of $46,000,000. However, a lack of qualified or interested buyers has forced the asking price of the palatial and perfectly provenanced Park Avenue co-op apartment all the way down to $29,000,000. Listing information and floor plan renderings reveal the 14-room residence features 5 principal bedrooms that share 4.5 bathrooms plus 3 itty bitty staff rooms that all share a single terlit. There are also 6 terraces, 5 fireplaces, 24 closets (and 1 dressing room), a vault for the valuables, a private elevator landing and, of course, that red lacquered library where the inestimable Miz Astor hosted untold numbers of luminaries, high society types, bizness barons and political movers and shakers.

A few blocks away from Miz Astor's doo-plex is the never lived Astor Suite at The Plaza which is owned by German biznessman Jürgen Friedrich who purchased the 5th floor sprawler in November of 2007 for $25,036,463 and boldly flipped it back on the market in September of 2008 with a stunning asking price of $55,000,000. Your Mama does not even need to consult our bejeweled abacus to see that's more than twice what the clothing tycoon paid for the 4,284 square foot apartment. The listing for the 3 bedroom and 5 bathroom apartment disappeared just days after being listed on the open market and then popped up again in December of 2008 with a new listing agent and a new and lower–but still optimistic–asking price of $38,000,000. In the summer of 2008 the lavish living Mister Friedrich also listed his 18,000 square foot weekend getaway in Southampton, NY with a goose pimple producing asking price of $67,500,000.

The west coast has also seen its fair share of asking price slices and dices. Super producer Jon Peters (Superman and Batman franchises, Bonfire of the Vanities, Rain Man and Flashdance to name a few) has long owned and been planning to build an opulent 30,000 square foot Richard Landry designed mega-mansion on Tower Lane in Beverly Hills but change his mind in late 2007 when the multi-parcel, partially developed 6+ acre property first hit the open market with a hefty price tag of $39,500,000. The property currently includes a very long, winding driveway, swimming pool complex and an underground garage that holds 14 or 25 cars, depending on whether you consult new or old listings. What that forty million clams did not include, rather surprisingly, was an actual house where the insanely rich buyer could actually live. After languishing for an eternity, the listing disappeared from the MLS only to reappear recently with an drastically slashed asking price of $19,995,000, which Your Mama's admittedly rudimentary calculations on our bejeweled abacus show represents a near 50% price reduction.

Another high profile property owner who has hacked nearly 50% off the asking price of his Bel Air residence is hair challenged and Oscar wining actor Nic Cage who possesses a bulging portfolio of trophy properties around the world, several of which are currently listed for sale with fat asking prices. Mister Cage's long time Los Angeles crib is a legendary 11,817 square foot brick built behemoth on Bel Air's Copa de Oro Road that he's been trying to unload for a number of years. Mister Cage, a man with a bit of a fetish for houses with storied pasts, is hardly the only celeb to occupy the prime 1-acre parcel East Gate property which was formerly owned by both . cheesetastic crooner Tom Jones and womanizing Rat Packer Dean Martin. First listed on the open market in September of 2007, the current asking price for the ivy covered 7 bedroom–some say 9 bedroom–and 9 bathroom mansion has dropped drastically to $19,750,000, a figure which our bejeweled abacus reveals is a stunning 44% drop from the original asking price of $35,000,000.

On the other side of Los Angeles, in the gated Laughlin Park community, the historic Cecil B. DeMille estate hit the market in late May of 2008 with an unheard of for that neck of the woods $26,250,000 and has been subjected to several price cuts that leave it currently with a still very high but substantially less$18,900,000.

Prolific Platinum Triangle property developer/flipper John Bersci has been trying to sell The Harvey Mudd Estate, which happens to be his personal residence in Beverly Hills. First listed in October of 2008 at $11,495,000, the 7 bedroom and 7 bathroom Elmer Grey designed digs has undergone several price chops and recently had a hefty $1,000,000 was hacked off the asking price which now stands at $7,995,000.

A smaller chop, but no less an indication of the depth and breadth of price plunging, is the Bel Air manse of big-booty entertainment juggernaut Jennifer Lopez and her pin thin huzband Mark Anthony who listed their 4 bedroom and 5.5 house in November of 2008 with an asking price of $8,500,000. The French Farmhouse style pile on swank St. Pierre Road now has an asking price of $7,900,000. The three-quarter acre property is heavily secured and includes well tended specimen gardens, a guest house, a pool and pool house and The Jonas Brothers for next door neighbors.

Marc Jacobs (Allgedly) Signs Contract for West Village Townhouse

BUYER: Marc Jacobs (allegedly)
LOCATION: Bethune Street, New York, NY
PRICE: around $13,000,000
SIZE: around 4,500 square feet
DESCRIPTION: ...Each one of a kind 4-6 bedroom townhouse-ranging from 3,800 to 4,800 square feet and 24' to 29' in width-has its own all-level elevator, wood burning fireplaces, designer garden and roof top terrace...

YOUR MAMAS NOTES: We apologize for our unexpected absence children. Your Mama recently winged to the glittery City by the Bay for the wild and wicked wedding of our ferociously lurid confrere Falsetta Knockers who finally managed to convince her louche literary lover to marry her naughty ass in a performance packed ceremony that Your Mama imagines will be a theatrical tour de force of singing, dancing and, since Miss Knockers can't help herself, unnecessary nudity

Our pal Patty Cake, who resides primarily on the other coast with her teeny-tiny canine, was kind enough to let Your Mama hole up in her recently rehabbed flat with it's dangerously slick wood floors and panoramic views over the great San Francisco Bay. Unfortunately, getting our trusty laptop to synch up with Miss Cake's internet service has proved a futile farce. Therefore, we've been forced to pilfer the wireless services of a nearby neighbor who made the mistake of not password encoding their signal. However, the signal is unreliable at best so we'll do what we can to work our poor fingers to the nubbins and pound out a few words before the signal goes dead.

Anyhoo...on to the real estate...

Late last week, while Your Mama was wrestling with Miss Cake's impotent internet service, all sorts of reports came out that the ballyhooed and tattooed fashion phenom Marc Jacobs and his Brazilian boy-beau Lorenzo Martone plunked down a wad of cash to secure a contract for a $13,000,000 townhouse in New York City's West Village. The first report seems to have come from the NY Post which stated that after looking at downtown properties for some time, they settled on an approximately 4,500 square foot townhouse on Bethune Street designed by Robert A.M. Stern.

Well children, let's be honest, there really aren't that many thirteen million dollar, Robert A.M. Stern designed townhouses on Bethune Street, so a little unscientific deduction and a few minutes tinkering around on the always helpful StreetEasy website, we've determined that if the reporting is accurate (and we don't know if it is or not), it's most logical that the sometimes cerulean haired Mister Jacobs and his man-friend Lorenzo are planning on purchasing one of the 7 newly built townhouses that are part of the yet to be completed Superior Ink condominium complex that anchors the corner of Bethune Street and the West Side Highway.

Some of the children who are wearing their thinking caps may recall that the Superior Ink building is the same residential development project where two time Oscar winning actress Hilary Swank reportedly signed a contract for a $3,500,000 two-bedroom apartment.

Mister Stern, the same swank architect responsible for the frighteningly expensive 15 Central Park West building, has done up the front facades of the row of seven townhouses to fit seamlessly with the historic architectural vernacular of the formerly bohemian now atrociously gentrified West Village while the interiors–which can be done up by either Mister Stern or the more arty-farty Yabu Pushelbergare meant to be four or five floors of pure new-fangled fabulosity. Each of the townhouses has private elevator serving all floors, a rear terrace, a roof terrace, all the most modern electronic conveniences and we've heard (but can not confirm) through the gossip grapevine that each of the townhouses is accessible via underground tunnel from the parking garage and apartment tower.

To top it all off, according the the development's website, the entire complex is registered with the U.S. Green Building Council and the developers are aiming at achieving LEED Silver Certification which will make it one of the more energy friendly and politically correct condo complexes in New York City.

The Superior Ink Condominiums and Townhouses are newly constructed structures located on the site of the former Superior Ink factory that was built in 1919. The high-priced complex's dee-luxe amenities include a private screening room, an entertainment lounge, a fitness center with a Pilates/yoga room, a children's playroom, 24-hour valet parking, and 24-hour concierge and doorman services in the tower.

According to the always on top of things people at The Real Deal, Mister Jacobs is currently leasing a 3 bedroom, 3.5 bathroom apartment at the Jean Nouvel designed 40 Mercer Street in Soho, for which he's paying a reported thirty grand a month. Retail sales may be in the damn terlit, but apparently Mister Jacobs still has a mountain of money to throw around on real estate. Good for him. We should all be so lucky.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Another Behemoth Beverly Hills Beast Hits the Market

SELLER: Lou Gonda
LOCATION: Lexington Road, Beverly Hills, CA
PRICE: $35,000,000
SIZE: 16,733 square feet, 6 bedrooms, 9 bathrooms (as per assessor)
DESCRIPTION: ...Situated behind the Beverly Hills Hotel on over 1.5 acres of finely manicured grounds, complete with salt water, mosaic tiled pool, n/s championship tennis court, complete guest house, flat grass pad with meandering pathways, streams, waterfalls and creek. This Georgian-style traditional estate was built using the finest materials and craftsmanship of unparalleled quality. Large-scale rooms with an intimate feel create an inviting home of magnificent proportions...

YOUR MAMAS NOTES: A couple of weeks ago, Your Mama discussed a number of mega-mansions currently for sale in Los Angeles wherein we briefly mentioned the Beverly Hills home of aircraft leasing billionaire Lou Gonda. At the time, we were not aware of the house being on the open market, but thanks to Snooping Sebastian, it's come to our attention that Mister Gonda's Lexington Road residence has arrived on the open market with an asking price of $35,000,000, reduced from it's original (off-market) asking price of $42,000,000.

According to an earlier report in The Wall Street Journal, much of Mister Gonda's mountain of money came from his huge holdings in a little company called American International Group, Inc., otherwise known as AIG. We all know what's happened to AIG, right? When AIG's share prices plummeted from $60 to $2, Mister Gonda lost untold millions of dollars.

Your Mama don't know nuthin' from nuthin' about Mister Gonda's personal finances, but this severe drop in net worth may have something to do with the little known bizness man putting his big Beverly Hills house on the market. Of course, it should be no surprise that Mr. Gonda told the good people at The Wall Street Journal that his children are grown, he and the wifey want to travel more and therefore no longer need such a significantly sized home and also that the family began diversifying there assets away from AIG six years ago which he said "has served us well." We'll let the children decide what they think is truth and what is fiction in all that.

Records on file with the County of Los Angeles show the Georgian-style pile's taxable square footage is 16,733, but we'd bet our long bodied bitches Linda and Beverly that number does not account for all the interior spaces because children, this house is a monster. Records also show there are 6 bedrooms and 9 bathrooms and listing information indicates there is also a guest house.

The meticulously maintained 1.5 acre estate includes a 5-car garage, a properly aligned north/south tennis court separated from the mosaic tiled salt water swimming pool by a long pavilion, enough lawn to pitch a large tent for philanthropic functions, meandering paths, waterfalls and creeks.

The interior spaces are, according to listing information, both "large-scale...with an intimate feel." We'll just have to take the listing agent's word on that since there are not currently any photos of the interior spaces that we were able to locate in our pre-caffeinated state. However, we'd imagine they are as opulent and lavish in that special way that only billionaires and Beverly Park residents do up their day-core.

Given that there are a butt-load of behemoth mansions with $20+ million price tags currently on the market in Los Angeles, Your Mama fears Mister Gonda faces some stiff real estate competition for the small pool of qualified buyers who are still looking to spend the big bucks for a house in which they can live like pashas and Gilded Age robber barons.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Justin Berfield Sells Newlywed's Nest

SELLER: Justin Berfield
LOCATION: Lorena Drive, Calabasas, CA
PRICE: $3,995,000
SIZE: 5 bedrooms, 7 bathrooms
DESCRIPTION: ...Situated in a guard-gated community, this privately gated home has been impeccably remodeled. The towering entryway has an exquisite wrought iron staircase & zen-like fountain while the open floor plan showcases the walls of windows. Exceptional amenities include: a restaurant style wine cellar, home theater & recording studio/gym. Chef s kitchen w/state-of-the art stainless steel appls. & can accommodate either intimate dining or a large catered event....

YOUR MAMAS NOTES: Your Mama is working on all ferreting out the 411 on a number of interesting celebrity real estate transactions, but we've yet to nail any of them down solidly enough to discuss them. So rather than look like a fool who does not know what we're talking about (which we admit sometimes happens despite out efforts not to), we're going to piggy back on the recent report of the lovely Ann Brenoff at the Los Angeles Times who revealed that former Malcom in the Middle actor turned producer Justin Berfield listed his Calabasas crib for $3,995,000.

If the children will put on their thinking caps, they might recall that young Mister Berfield only purchased the property in January of 2006 for $3,750,000 from dee-vorcing newlyweds Nick Lachey and that poor Jessica Simpson gurl who can't seem to stop her career from its slow and sad slide down the Tinseltown terlit. The former couple filmed their reality program Newlyweds: Nick and Jessica in this house and it was the scene of many embarrassing moments for the former Miz Lachey who Your Mama sincerely hopes is smarter than she appeared to be on that program.

Mister Berfield's "Trendy Contemporary Estate" above Lorena Drive in one of the many gated communities that surround the Calabasas Golf and Country Club. The house shares a driveway with an adjacent vacant buildable parcel that is owned by someone who is not Mister Berfield, Mister Lachey or Miss Simpson. Our tattletell tells us that Mister Berfield has a first right of refusal to purchase the land if the owner chooses to sell. Who knows if that right of refusal will transfer to the new owner. But if not, the current owners could build a big house that would likely share the gates and driveway to Mister Berfields house. Make sense?

Property records and listing information show the recently rehabbed, quasi-Mediterranean style mansion measures 6,483 square feet and includes 5 bedrooms and 7 bathrooms. Each of the bedrooms features its own private pooper and the master suite is comprised of a bedroom, a sitting area with fireplace, a big ol' bathroom, spacious walk in closets and a private balcony with views over the tiled roofs of all the other quasi-Mediterranean style mansions that line the gated streets that surround the Calabasas Golf and Country Club.

The meant to impress the guests rotunda entrance hall features a curving staircase with wrought iron details and a "zen-like fountain." Other amenities include formal living and dining rooms, a gore-may kitchen with state of the art stainless steel appliances, a wine cellar, home theater and a room that, apparently, does double duty as a recording studio and a gym.

Listing information also shows the back yard includes a "dramatic pool & overflow spa," whatever that is, as well as a "draped cabana & hotel style lounging areas." Sounds like Mister Berfield and his nice gay decorator have gone hog wild turning what is really a very ordinary, if very expensive, crib in Calabasas into a wonderland perfect for a bevy barely dressed babes to lay around and hope young Mister Berfield can get them on the boob-toob.

According to Miz Brenoff, 23-year old former child actor wants to unload his suburban mansion so that he can move to the glittery shores of Malee-boo where he'll have easier access to the offices of the film and tee-vee companies he formed in Venice.