Thursday, April 30, 2009

Music Manager Paul Rosenberg Moving On

SELLER: Paul Rosenberg
LOCATION: Beach Street, New York, NY
PRICE: $4,950,000
SIZE: 4,634 square feet, 3 bedrooms, 3.5 bathrooms
DESCRIPTION: ...a massive 4634 sf triplex with 785 sf of combined outdoor space, currently configured as three bedrooms (two en suite masters), 3.5 baths, plus a home office & dining area.Not only is this an elegant loft home, but a total environment as well which offers a patio with hot tub and outdoor Viking Professional grill with food and beverage center, a Crestron system which has integrated speakers and lighting control throughout every room and patio, home theatre room, glass enclosed wine and cigar bar, game room, and exercise room with sauna...

YOUR MAMAS NOTES: Whenever we get a hankering for the hustle and bustle of New York City we poke around the internets to see who might be selling what. Our most recent spin through the always informative StreetEasy turned up a 3 bedroom and 3.5 bathroom TriBeCa triplex maisonette owned by music manager Paul Rosenberg and currently listed with an asking price of $4,950,000.

While Mister Rosenberg is hardly a household name, his number one client is. In addition to managing angry Academy Award winning white rapper Eminem, Mister Rosenberg has also had his voice sampled on most (if not all) of Mister Eminem's albums and together the pair founded Shady Records, a label that also signed D12 (whoever that is) and the mega-rich money machine that is 50 Cent. Mister Rosenberg also manages The Knux and Three 6 Mafia (who won an academy award for their song It's Hard Out Here For A Pimp from the film Hustle and Flow) as well as co-manages the newly reformed pop-punk band Blink 182.

Property records and previous reports reveal that Mister Rosenberg scooped up the 4,634 square foot Beach Street maisonette, carved out of a former warehouse known as the Fischer Mills building, in August of 2002 for around $2,700,000. For all the non-New York puppies who don't know because they probably don't exist in places like Peoria, a maisonette is a multi-story house-like apartment, usually on the ground floor of a larger building, that possesses its own entrance from the outside. Maisonettes provide the privacy of a private home, but still have access to the amenities and security measures offered by the building.

According to listing information, the maisonette's main floor, includes 14-16 foot ceilings, lots of exposed brick and the original, rough-hewn wood beams and column supports which are classic (if cliché) TriBeCa loft conversion aesthetic features. The living room measures nearly 600 square feet and includes loads of built in storage cabinets, a wet bar and an small section of thick glass flooring that looks down into and provides much needed light for what listing information calls a "wine and cigar bar" on the lower floor.

Also on the main level is a stone floored kitchen with maple cabinetry, black counter tops that appear to be stone rather than granite and a large work island with a quartet of bar stools similar to those that can be found in about a thousand cheap Chinese food restaurants below 23rd Street. The adjacent dining room has a soaring 16 foot ceiling, a set of French doors that open to a balcony overlooking the apartment's private patio below, and an entire wall covered in varying shades of green color-blocks that we'd bet our long bodied bitches Linda and Beverly are leather panels affixed to the wall. Rather unfortunately, a powder pooper for guests opens directly into the dining room, which for obvious reasons is not optimal but could easily be relocated to a slightly better location on an adjacent wall.

One of the maisonette's two master bedrooms completes the middle level and features two sets of French doors opening to the aforementioned balcony, a couple of not particularly commodious closets and a bathroom with a radiant heated stone floor. Hovering above the living space is a small loft office space and a second master bedroom with more generously sized closets than the master on the main floor and a large bathroom also, we presume, fitted with radiant heated floors, a feature Your Mama's tootsies can not get enough of.

The lowest level of the triplex is where it becomes obvious that a man lives here. In addition to guest bedroom with direct access to the private patio, there is a home gym set-up with a dry sauna large enough to accommodate a few friends, a windowless recreation room with a round, poker game friendly table and chairs, an arcade game or two, a glassed enclosed wine and cigar bar and a media room with stone walls, caramel leather cover recliner like chairs.

A small and enviable private garden includes a built in grill area and a hot tub which sounds like a good idea except we're more than a little concerned about all the windows that might look down into the patio which would make skinny dipping and hooking up with a hottie a bit more of a exhibitionist's fantasy that Your Mama would feel comfortable.

According to listing information, Mister Rosenberg first put his three floor bachelor pad on the market in November of 2008 with an asking price of $5,450,000 and recently hacked five hundred grand off the price, a not so unusual maneuver in a somewhat stagnant Manhattan real estate market. None the less, Your Mama's bejeweled abacus shows that even if Mister Rosenberg has to slice and dice the asking price even further, he could still easily pocket a million or more smackers on a sale which is, of course, nothing to sneeze at.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Anthony Clark Is Flipping Out Again

SELLER: Anthony Clark
LOCATION: Senalda Road, Los Angeles CA
PRICE: $1,995,000
SIZE: 2,574 square feet, 3 bedrooms, 4 bathrooms
DESCRIPTION: Extraordinary brand nu 2009 remodel never been lived in. 2 years in the making! The finest materials & design. Amazing residence w/ serene Costa Rica style cnyn vus. Magnif Douglas Fir hi pitch beam ceilings. Beaut ironwood, teakwood, oak, slate, & basalt accents thru-out. Dramatic black bamboo flrs. Sub-zero kitchen. Fleetwood doors. Hansgrohe fixtures. Master suite has incredible entertaining terrace & all glass window bath w/ grand steam shower. 3rd bedroom has sep entrance.

YOUR MAMAS NOTES: Back in early January Your Mama discussed a couple of California cribs being flipped by actor/comedian Anthony Clark who the children may remember from his six year spin as an excessively uptight film executive on the now canceled sit-com Yes, Dear.

We first discussed Mister Clark's Robert Byrd designed digs at the tippy-top of Outpost Drive in Los Angeles which listing information shows is still available with an asking price of $2,395,000 (reduced from $2,795,000). Mister Clark, according to listing information, would also be willing to lease the house at $7,800 per month under just about any circumstances...short term, long term, furnished or unfurnished.

The very next day we shooshed on down to lovely (if way too boho-luxe for our taste anymore) Laguna Beach where Mister Clark is selling a comely contemporary house on Coast View Drive. Listing information reveals the 3 bedroom and 3.5 bathroom dwelling was first listed nearly a year ago with an asking price of $3,289,000, a figure that has been hugely hacked to $2,495,000 and which records show is just $295,000 more than he paid for the place in April of 2004.

Recently Mister Clark flipped a third property in the celebrity packed Outpost Estates area of Los Angeles onto the market. Located on Senalda Drive and just a few doors down from Scarlett Johansson's never lived in mansion on the same street, the property is currently priced at $1,995,000 after recently receiving a substantial $200,000 price chop from its original listing price of $2,195,000.

A peep into the property records reveals that Mister Clark, one of the few out homosexual actors in Hollywood, picked up the property in June of 2007 for $1,200,000. Mister Clark spent the next couple of years fixing up the fixer upper (and it was truly a fixer children because we've seen the photos).

Listing information shows the hillside house measures 2,574 square feet and includes 3 bedrooms and 4 bathrooms, a bed to bath ratio the Dr. Cooter swoons over, but one our harsh tongued house gurl Svetlana does not feel the same way about for obvious reasons.

As do many houses in the hills above Hollywood, the front facade is set back only a few feet from the road behind a stacked stone pony wall and has been clad in lovely horizontal strips of multi-toned woods that may or may not be ironwood and/or teak. Now listen here children, Your Mama does not want to hear from all you whiners who want to prattle on about how terrible it is that this house sits close the road. For your information, there are probably about 19 cars that drive by here everyday and whether any of you rural queens or space hogs like it or not, geography often dictates that houses in the hills hug the streets on which they sit.

Anyhoo, the organic modern vibe continues on the interiors where the floors are either feel good on your feet slate or durable and environmentally friendly black bamboo. The open plan living/dining and kitchen areas share a high peaked wood ceiling and floor to ceiling windows that open to a series of not quite big enough to bbq balconies.

The horizontal motif returns in the kitchen which is wrapped in strips oak and teak (and perhaps iron wood). A complete suite of high grade stainless steel appliances have been slipped into custom oak cabinets topped with basalt counter tops. We are particularly fond of the nearly 900 pound, 2-door and 4-drawer Sub-Zero refrigerator/freeze that costs somewhere in the neighborhood of fourteen thousand dollars.

The master bedroom, located on the lower level, continues with the organic shit and features a stacked stone wall, more of that beauteous black bamboo flooring and gigantic bathroom with double sinks, a party sized steam shower and a soaking tub that sits in front of a wall of windows that slide open so that the soft scents of pine and scrub can waft in while sitting in a pool of dirty water.

Due to it's hillside perch, there really isn't much of a yard for kiddies or our long bodied bitches Linda and Beverly , but a large covered terrace has been fashioned out of what was once just the spider filled underneath part of the house. Easy maintenance Mother-in-law's tongue plants have been planted up against the house in a planting bed filled with some of those zen-ish grey stones and little green poofy plants. Although we think those paltry pillows and that little wicker table thing-a-majig are simply unacceptable as patio furniture (what grown person who doesn't contort their body with that yoga shit can get up and down off the floor like that?) we can imagine that with the proper outdoor furniture set-up, this under the house terrace would be a nice place to sip gin and tonics while reading the latest gossip glossies and watching the sun go down through the "Costa Rica like" trees that dot the slope below the house and obscure what might actually be a spectacular view if they weren't there. A less environmentally inclined person will figure out a way to send those trees to the wood chipper, but clearly Mister Clark is a tree lover.

It's unclear to Your Mama which of Mister Clark's three houses he inhabits (or if he lives in yet another property) but we presume he'll simply move to one or another when one of his three properties finally sells to someone appreciative of this renovation style. Your Mama hopes Mister Clark sells something soon–or gets a damn acting job–because just thinking about his crushing monthly carrying costs makes Your Mama shudder.

The Big Digs of Deion Sanders

SELLER: Deion and Pilar Sanders
LOCATION: N. Preston Road, Prosper, TX
PRICE: $21,000,000
SIZE: 29,122 square feet, 10 bedrooms, 9 full and 4 half bathrooms
DESCRIPTION: The ultimate party and family ranch. 2 story entry, sunken living, banquet dining, your own Dave and Busters, indoor basketball court and bowling alley, indoor and outdoor pools, movie theatre, billiard room, hall of fame gallery, football field, 12 acre lake, tennis court, guest house, 10 car garage, furniture negotiable, approx. living area 29,112 sq. ft. and 38,831 gross sq. ft. footage in main home.

YOUR MAMAS NOTES: Thanks to the Texas Twostepper we've learned that notorious egomaniac, publicity hound, sports commentator, reality television star (Deion & Pilar: Prime Time Love), and retired professional athlete Deion Sanders and his wifey Pilar have listed their farm/estate in Prosper, TX with an asking price of $21,000,000.

Not being familiar with much in the way of the manly sports, Your Mama had to take to the internets to figure out who this Deion Sanders person is. Our brief research showed that not only did the man play professional baseball he also played professional football for the Atlanta Falcons, the San Francisco 49ers and the Dallas Cowboys who in 1995 paid the well-built corner back $35,000,000 for a seven year contract that included a staggering $12,999,000 signing bonus. He later, according to the interweb, played with the pigskin for the Washington Redskins and finally the Baltimore Ravens before hanging up his cleats. Football players wear cleats, right?

Deion and Pilar's property sits 10 or 20 long miles north of the Dallas metro-plex on more than 100 acres of flat lands in picayune Prosper, TX. Now children, we don't know eh-nee-thing about real estate in North Texas, but we have a hard time imagining there are many moguls or oil tycoons looking to drop twenty some million clams on a house in teeny-tiny and not particularly prosperous Prosper, TX where we can assure you there isn't much in the way of businesses that cater to Maybach owners and Gucci lovers.

Listing information shows Mister Sanders' sprawling mega-mansion of indeterminate and indiscriminate architectural style measures a titanic 29,122 square feet of glossy marble floors, soaring ceilings, colossal crystal chandeliers and some of the most disturbing drapery Your Mama has seen in a very long time. The house is so humongous that the able bodied Mister Sanders often gets around on one of those Rascal scooters that are more commonly used by the old, the infirm, the physically decrepit and apparently, the lazy.

According to listing information, the multi-winged monster mansion contains 10 bedrooms including a first floor master bedroom suite with a sitting room that spins like a damn turn table, a large, round and orgy friendly bed, more smoked glass and black lacquer than we recommend be in one place at one time, a two story walk-in closet, kitchen, a behemoth bathroom with a garden tub (whatever that is) and a private 2-car attached garage separate from the 10 or 12 other garage spaces that house Mister Sanders extensive collection of tricked out whips located at the opposite end of the house.

Listing information also shows there are 9 full and 4 half bathrooms which our bejeweled abacus shows adds up to an unlucky thirteen terlits. Our tyrannical and seriously superstitious house gurl Svetlana would demand that Your Mama and the Dr. Cooter either add or remove a bathroom before she'd even step across the threshold because she refuses to enter a house with 13 of anything.

There are, according to one listing we located, multiple staircases, an elevator, 5 fireplaces, 3 dining areas and 7 living areas including a marble floored, hotel lobby sized living room featuring funeral home style curtains. The vast and seriously dated kitchen complex includes maple cabinets, marble floors, stainless steel appliances and black counter tops and accents. Other rooms include a family room with 10 tee-vees and 2 security monitors, a library, a solarium, a home gym, office, billiard room, a barber shop and something called a "Hall of Fame Gallery." There are probably about a dozen other rooms for various uses we can not even fathom and there is a detached guest house in the back for all those who think 10 bedrooms in the mega-sized main house is not enough space when it comes to shacking up the in-laws.

Outdoor and recreational facilities include a multi-level movie theater, an indoor swimming pool and spa with some of the ass ugliest swagged drapery we have ever had the displeasure of witnessing with our own eyes, a two-lane bowling alley, an indoor basketball court, two adjacent outdoor swimming pools including a lagoon style number with a concrete island in the middle, a party sized outdoor spa, a 12-acre lake stocked with fish, equestrian facilities, pasture lands...breathe, breathe, breathe...a sport court, children's playground, sunken trampoline, batting cage, a full sized damn football field (with goal posts), a lighted tennis court and a gargantuan game room modeled after a Dave & Busters which, much to Your Mama's horror, is some sort of restaurant, arcade, sports bar and gambling parlor franchise.

We can't imagine why Mister and Missus Sanders, who have three young children together and two more teenagers from Mister Sanders' previous marriage, would want to up and sell this self-contained estate that while depressing to Your Mama's delicate decorative sensibilities is surely a resort-like wonderland for pre-teens, toddlers and adult men who do not want to grow up.

For a more in depth peep at Deion's digs check this out but Your Mama recommends y'all get yerself a nerve pill and pour some booze down yer gullet first.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Mariah Carey Buys West Coast Crib

BUYER: Mariah Carey and Nick Cannon Carey
LOCATION: Antelo Road, Bel Air, CA
PRICE: around $7,000,000 (allegedly)
SIZE: 11,750 square feet (approx.), 5 bedrooms, 8 bathrooms
DESCRIPTION: Magnificent gated private view estate on 3 acres. Incredible site. Prime Bel Air address. Staggering 360 degree vus of entire city.

YOUR MAMAS NOTES: Turns out all the hoopla, head spinning and spilt ink regarding music super star Mariah Carey buying couture queen Suzanne Saperstein's near mythic mansion in the Holmby Hills area of Los Angeles was just that...hoopla. That certainly comes and no surprise to Your Mama who never imagined that the wild and wonderfully kooky Miz Saperstein would ever allow her real estate baby to slip into the hands of a woman likely turn her heavily gilded ballroom into a hair and nail salon and stuff her boo-dwar with a bunch of Hello Kitty crap which is, apparently, one of the whistle stop wonder's preferred decorating motifs.

According to our sources Allez Oup as well as the legendarily knowledgeable Lucy Spillerguts, Your Mama has learned that Miss Carey and her huzband Nick Cannon Carey dumped "around seven million" smackers on a house high in the hills above Bel Air that once belonged to poster princess and original angel Farrah Fawcett, who is, bless her pap hating heart, being ravaged by the cancer even as we type our fingers to the nubbins.

A peep into and a poke around property records reveals that Miz Fawcett sold the Antelo Road residence back in 1999 to a prolific and Grammy winning music engineer/producer named Allen Sides who has used his pin sharp musician's ear while working with music masters like like Eric Clapton, Faith Hill, Mary J. Blige, the incomparable Joni Mitchell, Ray Charles, Ella Fitzgerald, André Previn and that freaky (and deceased) Frank Zappa dude to name just a few. No doubt, the man has crossed musical paths with Miss Mariah a time or two as well.

Thanks to Our Fairy Godmother in Bel Air, we've learned that Mister and Missus Sides listed their dee-voonly secluded 3-acre estate above Stone Canyon in August of 2008 with an asking price of $9,500,000. Before long, the asking price had been sliced, diced, slivered and slashed to $6,995,000 and shortly thereafter the property was removed from the open market but was still, we understand, shopped around off-market. Then along came Miss Mariah who, records show, quietly closed on the property in early April of 2009 for an as yet undisclosed sum of money.

Property records show the sprawling, multi-winged mansion measures 9,951 square feet with 6 bedrooms and 7 bathrooms. However, listing information we managed to get our grubby mitts on shows the house spans 11,750 square feet (approx.) and includes 5 bedrooms and 8 bathrooms. We don't know why the discrepancy.

Anyhoo, listing information shows that in addition to all the bedrooms, terlit rooms and seven fireplaces, the 2-story center hall traditional includes formal living and dining rooms, den, family room, lanai, library/study (as if), media room, office, an eat in kitchen, and while listing information does not say so, we would not be remotely surprised to learn there is a recording studio on the property. This would, obviously, be a wonderful convenience that would allow Miss Mariah to warble and slide up and down every note on the damn scale without ever changing out of her robe, which we'd bet our long bodied bitches Linda and Beverly is one of those shorty numbers that barely covers her nether regions.

The grounds include two motor courts, a huge rectangular swimming pool with a pool side pavilion, a large brick terrace with long views down the rugged canyon towards downtown Los Angeles, several flat lawn areas, a gazebo, and three gated entrances, all of which Your Mama can assure the children will be secured with armed sentries prepared to pepper an automobile with a curtain of bullets should anyone be stoopid enough to try and peer through Miss Mariah's tall hedges. Don't even think about it children. Seriously. If you think Ellen Degeneres is serious about her security, then you ain't seen nothing compared to the pretzeling Miss Mariah's burly men will do to anyone who gets nosy enough to cruise on by hoping to catch a glimpse of Our Lady of the Micro Mini and Hair Extensions.

In New York City, Miss Mariah still owns a tremendous triplex apartment in TriBeCa and down in the Bahamas, she owns a multi-acre ocean front compound on guard gated Eleuthera Island where the soft sands are, natch, Miss Mariah's favorite color, pink.

Monday, April 27, 2009

San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom Moving On

SELLER: Gavin Newsom
LOCATION: Green Street, San Francisco, CA
PRICE : $2,995,000
SIZE: 1,693 square feet, 1 bedroom and 1.5 bathrooms
DESCRIPTION: This 1-of-a-kind Russian Hill Penthouse is located in a prestigious full service doorman building, Bellaire Tower, an amazing Art Deco style building designed by noted architect BAUMANN, H.C. This residence was completely remodeled & stripped to the studs & designed by Michael Agins & Assoc. Interior Design firm in SF. This spectacular residence offers the best landmark Vus SF has to offer including 3 Bridges & water VUS from all rms. In unit lry, wired for surround sound, strge, pkg & rf dk.

YOUR MAMAS NOTES: All morning long we've been receiving email after email after email from real estate obsessed San Franciscans directing Your Mama to a myriad of reports that reveal the fetching and slick haired mayor of San Francisco Gavin Newsom recently plunked his Russian Hill penthouse on the market with an asking price of $2,995,000.

The smooth talking and socially progressive Mister Newsom became a political super star in 2004 when he took the controversial step of allowing marriage licenses to be issued for gay guys and lesbian ladees. We all know what's become of that. Can the children say Proposition 8? However, he of the glittering and perfect chompers recently tossed his hot potato carrying hat into the ring to become the next governor of California. Lefty liberal Mister Newsom sitting up in the governer's chair in Sacramento is a scenario that no doubt scares the beejeezis out of homophobes all up and down the great Golden State who imagine that if homos and lezzies are allowed to get married the institution of marriage would somehow be compromised. Pleeze. That is just stoopid. Married heterosexual people seem to do a fine job of screwing up their marriages without any help from the gays and lesbians. None the less, we are not here to get all frothed up on our soap box so let's just move on to the real estate. (And p.s., homosexual bashing comments will be removed so spare yourself the effort.)

A peep into the records on Property Shark shows the entrepreneurial Mister Newsom snatched up his 1,693 square foot unit in February of 2006 when he paid family friend Peter Getty–brother of Mister Newsom's former bizness benefactor and boozum buddy Billy Getty–$2,350,000 for the 1 bedroom and 1.5 bathroom Green Street aerie.

The Newsom nest is located on the 20th floor of the beautiful Bellaire Tower, an Art Deco extravaganza built in 1930 and has wrap around views that stretch from the gorgeous Golden Gate Bridge, across to Marin County, over downtown and the TransAmerica Pyramid and all the way down to the hard working Bay Bridge.

An ride up the elegant elevator leads to the front door which opens to an entrance hall and an adjacent powder pooper for guests. The apartment pivots around a sizable central living room which has a wood burning fireplace, arched windows that frame the views and a brown and beige day-core done by a nice gay and local decorator named Michael Algin that is part Jonathan Adler and part Rose Tarlow. Okay, truth be told, we don't actually know if he's gay so lay off.

Anyhoo, to the left of the living room is a media room with more brown and white day-core, a dee-voonly cozy looking chocolate brown velvet sofa, and a giant flat screen tee-vee for catching up on all the reality programs Your Mama would bet our long bodied bitches Linda and Beverly are one of Mister Newsom's many guilty pleasures. Behind the media room is a slightly too narrow dining room with Palladian windows, dark chocolate brown walls and a huge abstract painting that is, quite frankly, to much of the same brown and white color as the rest of the room (and apartment). Like in the living room, where an orange color field painting has been hung above the fireplace, it is our humble and meaningless opinion that something more colorful would really help the dining room from looking, well, a little bit dead. Plus we don't like the lack of a chandelier in here. We assume a pendant fixture was nixed in order to keep sight lines of the big views clutter free, but we really like a chandelier in the dining room.

The gore-may kitchen is bathed in Calcutta marble counter tops atop white cabinets, brown paint, and includes an expensive suite of stainless steel appliances including Viking brand range and microwave, SubZero refrigerator/freezer and a Marvel wine cooler and beverage refrigerator. The trio of arched niches for displaying stemware and booze are far too decoratively gimmicky for our personal taste. According to the floor plan, a door leads to the service hallway and a large pantry and laundry room is tucked away off the kitchen.

On the right side of the living room is a beige library/den with both arched and Palladian style windows, another velvet sofa and a collection of books that all appear to have similar bindings which makes them really more about impressing guests than about reading. Beyond the library is the brown and beige bedroom which offers a giant walk in closet with marble counters, custom built-in, drawers, wall mirror and laundry hamper. The bathroom is painted a pewtery sort of beige with grey veined marble on the floor, half way up the walls, on the counter top and in the steam shower where we can imagine Mister Newsom sweats out the toxins from City Hall.

By any estimation, nearly three million clams for a 1 bedroom apartment in San Francisco is a screaming amount of money. However, listings in the very desirable 65-unit Bellaire Tower are exceedingly rare which, of course, tends to keep prices through the roof even in a lackluster economy. The people at Property Shark show that between February of 2006 and June of 2008 not a single apartment transferred ownership and since 2000 and in fact only 10 units have changed hands since July of 2000. Monthly maintenance charges are $1,414.73 and all that moolah pays for the water and garbage services, the 24-hour doorman, building insurance, earthquake insurance, steam heating, storage, care of the common areas including the roof garden and valet parking, because who wants to park their own damn car if they don't have to?

Given that Mister Newsom and his ack-turuss wifey Jennifer Siebel Newsom are with baby, we imagine their next residence will be a bit more family friendly, no less impressive and, we hope, less brown and beige than their soon to be ex-penthouse.

Gwyneth Paltrow Has Rats?

RENTER: Gwyneth Paltrow and Chris Martin
LOCATION: Mandeville Canyon Road, Los Angeles, CA
PRICE: We have no idea
SIZE: 5,706 square feet, 8 bedrooms and 8.5 bathrooms total
DESCRIPTION: Classic architect designed Monterey Colonial on 5+ park like acres. A true gentlemen's Country Ranch Estate in town that is gated and completely private. Main house entry w/ curved staircase opens to spacious liv rm, paneled pub/game rm. Galleria opens to patio & gazebo. Din rm w/ butler pantry & Jr. Din rm off gourmet kt w/ break area. Master suite w/ FP down & 4 beds up. Pool, sp, guesthouse, tennis court, 6 stall barn, rm for riding ring, foaling barn/GH, spectacular playground & meadows.

YOUR MAMAS NOTES: Over the weekend Your Mama and the Dr. Cooter went hiking in Mandeville Canyon with Sister Cooter and her pal H.R. Huffandpuff. As we we screaming down Sunset Boulevard in Sister Cooter's overheated Saab sedan on our way trail head, H.R. asked Your Mama what dish we knew about all the recent reports that wishes she were British Oscar winning actress Gywneth Paltrow was having a problem with rats in her L.A. home.

Well children, we are not embarrassed to tell y'all that we knew nothing. Not. A. Thing. At least not about this rat bizness.

When we arrived home, legs exhausted and a-trembling from exertion, we took to the internets where we read that poor Miss Paltrow recently rang up the pest control people after she discovered her new (leased) Los Angeles residence was swarming with the vermin. Vermin! The article went on to say that the rat-infested residence is a luxury apartment near where her soo-blime mother Blythe Danner shacks up. (As far as we know, and of course we don't know nuthin', Mizz Danner lives in an ocean view condominium in Santa Monica.)

This mention of an apartment sorta didn't make sense to Your Mama because, according to Glinda the Good Witch, a gal with her finger on the pulse of current celebrity real estate doings, Miss Paltrow and her rock star huzband Chris Martin recently leased an impressive and sprawling estate in the Mandeville Canyon area of Brentwood that was on the market earlier this year for a knee knocking $28,500,000 and is most definitely not an apartment.

Property records show the 5.3 acre estate sits on multiple parcels with a main house that measures 5,706 square feet (it seems bigger to Your Mama). Listing information shows that between the Monterey Colonial style main house and the guest house there are a total of 8 bedrooms and 8.5 bathrooms which should be just about enough space for the family and their retinue of of nannies, macrobiotic chefs, yoga instructors, exercise gurus and ass wipers.

According to listing information the main house features four fireplaces and includes a curving staircase in the entrance hall that opens to the living room, a formal dining room and a junior dining room (whatever that is), a gore-may kitchen with yet another dining area, an office, paneled pub/game room, family room, library/study, loft and lanai.

Outdoor amenities on the celebrity style estate include a tremendous terrace where Gwyny and Madge will have plenty of space to contort their bodies during sunrise yoga sessions, a swimming pool and spa surrounded by a big brick terrace, a properly oriented north/south tennis court, parking for a dozen or more automobiles, a 6 stall horse barn, meadows for pony rides, one of those over sized chess games boards on the back lawn, a play ground and a play house for Miss Paltrow and Mister Martin's oddly named offspring.

Now children, we do not know if this is the rat infested property about which has been reported or if the Paltrow/Martin clan were bedding down in a different rat-infested residence prior to moving to their temporary Mandeville Canyon crib where they're planning to stay a few months while Miss Paltrow gets paid big bucks film the action sequel to Iron Man 2.

Miss Paltrow and Mister Martin live primarily in London where they are reported to own two adjacent townhouses in the Belsize Park area (how very Madonna of them). Stateside, the outrageously rich and successful couple own 3,892 square foot penthouse apartment at the River Lofts building in New York City as well as a 6,800 square foot spread on Old Montauk Highway in Amagansett, NY (which is the Hamptons, dahlinks).

Friday, April 24, 2009

Jeff Lewis Is Back In The Saddle...Sort Of

Ever since the bottom fell out of the house flipping market in Los Angeles–and make no mistake my chickens, the bottom fell out of the house flipping market–obsessive/compulsive reality tee-vee star and serial renovator/flipper Jeff Lewis has flown largely under the radar.

Yes, Miss Lewis did manage to get a good price for a 4 bedroom and 3 bathroom house on N. Edgemont Drive which was listed at $1,395,000 and sold in early January of 2009 for $1,300,000 to a couple of Asian ladees. However, keep in mind that the extremely tightly wound developer paid a million bucks for the property in June of 2008 and probably spent a couple hundred grand in carrying costs, doing up the interiors and putting in a swimming pool. So, by our crude and meaningless estimations, after he paid the fat real estate fees Miss Lewis would have had barely enough left over to keep Zoila and Jenni paid let alone keep his cat in therapy.

Anyhoo, in May of 2008, Miss Lewis and his overly coiffured ex-beau and current bizness partner Ryan Brown listed a house on Valley Oak Drive with an asking price of $3,195,000. They had a devil of a time getting someone to buy the house and eventually, by late July, the asking price had been chop chop chopped down to $2,595,000. Shortly thereafter the house was marked "Looking for Backup" in the MLS and Your Mama breathed a sigh of relief that those high-larious Flipping Out freaks managed to get out of that property by the skin of their well maintained teeth.

But alas...apparently that deal did not go through because Miss Lewis is back riding the real estate rodeo and just yesterday the property appeared back on the open market with an asking price of $2,695,000.

It is our understanding from someone who will remain nameless that Miss Lewis has been shacking up in the house and will need to find a new place to live when someone finally signs on the dotted line for the 3 bedroom and 3.5 bathroom residence.

As a quick recap...records reveal that in addition to the house on N. Edgemont, Misters Lewis and Brown sold a house on Ben Lomond Place in April of 2008 for $1,250,000 (which was first listed at $1,525,000) and in May of 2008 they sold a house on N. Commonwealth Avenue to Lost actor Dominic Monaghan for $1,595,000 after being listed with an asking price of $1,795,000. Prior to that, back in 2007, records show the dysfunctional duo sold a big house on Nottingham Avenue for $4,350,000.

But what we really want to know, is when will Miss Lewis be back on the boob-toob because we love that queen's antics almost as much as we love all those tawdry bee-hawtchas on The Real Life Housewives of New York City, Orange County, Atlanta and now those tough talking beasts in New Jersey.

From Corea to Keener/Mulroney to Moore to...

SELLERS: Estate of LeRoi Moore (at least we're pretty sure that's who it is)
LOCATION: Linwood Drive, Los Angeles, CA
PRICE: $3,199,000
SIZE: 4,866 square feet, 4 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms
DESCRIPTION: Grand Laughlin Park 1930s estate of exquisite craftsmanship & detail. This unique estate has 4 br 2 ba plus 2 sep gst homes, a prvt courtyard entry to main foyer, voluminous rooms or rich wood floors, walls & ceilings leaded sanctuary style windows, Bo trussed ceilings of gallery proportions & leaded glass French doors leading to spectacular stone loggia. Over 18,000sf lushly landscaped grounds w/ a beautiful pool. Systems have been upgraded including state-of-the-art security control system.

YOUR MAMAS NOTES: Bear with us babies, because this one is a wee bit confusing.

As we were perusing the listings in the Los Feliz area of Los Angeles recently, our beady little eyes settled on a bit of residential lovliness in the celeb-packed and gated community of Laughlin Park currently listed at $3,199,000. Property records were confusing, so we got on the horn with the always happily helpful Lucy Spillerguts who confirmed that the property was formerly owned by bizzy actor Dermot Mulroney (Georgia Rule, The Family Stone, Must Love Dogs and etc.) who lived here with his ex-wifey, the soo-blime Oscar nominated silver screener Catherine Keener (Hamlet 2, Capote, The 40 Year Old Virgin, Being John Malkovich and etc.).

Property records reveal the former marrieds paid $1,325,000 in April of 1997 when they purchased the dignified Linwood Drive digs from Grammy winning musician and big time Scientologist Chick Corea. Records also show that in October of 2005, before the once happy couple went splitsville, the mini-estate was sold to an entity linked to a charitable organization in North Carolina that belongs to Grammy winning singer/songwriter Dave Matthews. The children will please note Your Mama's consternation and furrowed brow over that unexpected bit of information. However, after a bit more digging around on the interweb, Your Mama feels confident (if not 100% sure) that the house on Linwood Drive is not owned by Mister Matthews but rather by his recently passed saxophonist LeRoi Moore who went to meet his maker in August of 2008 from complications resulting from an freak ATV accident.

Publicity courting love them and leave them musician John Mayer also has some connection to this property according to Miz Spillerguts. But if we're being honest, and we always are, we don't know what his connection might be particularly considering that he owns a modest house in Pacific Palisades and, according to Glinda the Good Witch (and others), is temporarily shacking up in a humongous house in Hidden Hills while he records his next album.

Anyhoo, records shows the house in question was built in the mid-1930s and measures 4,866 square feet with 4 bedrooms and just 2 poopers. Now children, neither Your Mama and the Dr. Cooter nor our imperious house gurl Svetlana are fans of having half a dozen terlits peppered throughout the house. However, we strongly believe that a residence of this size should have at least two point five if not 3.5 bathrooms even though there are, according to listing information, two dee-lishus and detached guest houses on the .42 acre property each, presumably, with their own private pooper.

A brick courtyard at the front of the walled and gated property leads to the entrance which is set into an imposing wall of what appears to be rough hewn and stacked granite slabs. The entrance hall has wood floors, high ceilings and carefully cared for woodwork that include several display niches and a carved staircase.

The long and elegantly proportioned living room focuses on a baronial fireplace and the raised paneling on the walls is wrapped over the peaked and beamed ceiling from which a couple of swoon worthy vintage chandeliers hang. Listing information says the ceiling is "bo trussed" which we think means buttressed, but we're not sure.

A round room with a soaring wood ceiling currently holds an ass-uglee curving leather and wood sofa and what we think is sound recording equipment. We would not stake anything valuable on it, but we think this room may have been originally intended as the dining room. Or maybe it was a den. Or a library. Oh hell, we don't know.

A family room with leaded glass windows lies beyond the living room and the kitchen complex includes a heavenly butler's pantry with wonderfully restored original cabinetry, updated marble counter tops and an almost indestructible stainless steel sink. The kitchen proper has more marble counter tops and an island with a mack-daddy Wolf brand range over which has been hung the largest and most threatening looking pot rack Your Mama has ever seen outside of a commercial kitchen.

A wide brick terrace stretches the length of the rear facade and overlooks the simple, rectangular shaped swimming pool which has been sunk directly into the lawn with a simple stone border. The two above mentioned guesthouses ensure the homeowner will not be subject to the grotesque sounds and odors of fornication and defecation created by over night guests.

According the listing information, the property is currently under offer and we'd bet our long bodied bitches Linda and Beverly that the house will be sold to another celebrity...or at least it should be sold to someone high profile since the house has only known famous inhabitants for decades and it seems a shame not to continue in that vein.

We don't have a clue as to where Miz Keener decamped, but according to Miz Spillerguts, Mister Mulroney also owns a house on 6th Street in Santa Monica, so perhaps that's where he's shacking up with his baby momma Tharita Catulle whose name Your Mama dare not say out loud because we do not, unfortunately, speak the I-talian.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Tim Gunn Takes the A Train

BUYER: Tim Gunn
LOCATION: West 90th Street, New York, NY
PRICE: $1,500,000
SIZE: 1,765 square feet (approx.), 2 bedrooms, 2.5 bathrooms
DESCRIPTION: This triple mine 1,765+ sqa ft 2br/2.5 bath condo with a 527 sq ft terrace feels like a private home in the sky yet it is in a full service bldg with a gym on the Upper West Side. This apt is a bright corner duplex with 3 exposures, a separate windowed dining room that has a Sub-Zero wine cooler and a wet bar, a top-of-the-line windowed kitchen with a granite counter that has seating and floor to ceiling windowns in the spacious corner living room and both bedrooms.

YOUR MAMAS NOTES: Model slash baby factory Heidi Klum may be the hostess of the reality tee-vee program Project Runway, but the show's real star is the prissy, prim and dee-lightfully proper Tim Gunn. Your Mama confesses that we have a sweet spot in our cold and dark heart for Mister Gunn because not only do we love his mincing ways on the boob-toob but also because Your Mama and the Dr. Cooter used to live in the very same New York City building as Mister Gunn and would frequently find him in clogs (yes, children, clogs) and a perfectly pressed white t-shirt placidly gliding up and down the funky aisles of the grungy grocery store located on the ground floor of the building. We found him to be oddly entrancing in that he never looked left or right, just straight ahead, perhaps uncomfortable with his new found fame and just a little bit concerned he might be spotted and outed in an article on Page Six about buying up a couple of Lean Cuisines for dinner.

Anyhoo, according to Miz Keil who now pens the Gimme Shelter column for the NY Post–and confirmed with property records–Mister Gunn has moved out of his West 24th Street rental and to the Upper West Side where he recently forked over $1,500,000 for a doo-plex condo apartment on West 90th Street.

According to listing information the two-floor, 2 bedroom and 2.5 bathroom unit has approximately 1,765 square feet of interior space and a heavenly 527 square feet of outdoor space. The front door opens to a small entrance hall which leads directly into the dining room which is, of course not optimal but also not so terribly unusual in smaller New York City apartments. The dining room includes a wet bar with SubZero fridge so Mister Gunn's dinner guests can get liquored up before, during and after dinner. An adjacent guest terlit does double duty as the laundry room and opens directly into the dining room, a potentially disastrous set up for obvious reasons.

At the opposite end of the apartment from the dining room is a corner living room with gigantic floor to ceiling windows, wood floors and custom built cabintry fitted for the flat screen tee-vee. In between the living and dining rooms sits the unfortunately countrified kitchen with white cabinets, wood floors, sand colored granite counter tops and one of those horrid Fisher & Paykel double drawer dishwashers. Those things might be expensive, trendy and perhaps even energy efficient but it is Your Mama's personal experience with the contraption that they are also unrealiable and too small for washing oversized dishes. In fact, this coming Monday a muscular man named Juan is coming by to swap out the not-functioning Fisher & Paykel dishwashing lemon in our kitchen for another, hopefully more reliable model with just one door. Halle-damn-lujuh!

But we digress...The floor plan for the unit shows one of the bedrooms on the first floor which includes a private pooper and large windows facing both south and east. Upstairs a small landing leads to the master bedroom which includes a windowed bathroom and three closets for Miss Gunn's large collection of slim and conservative suits. A large built in unit in the bedroom can be used for sweater storage, electronics and stashing porn.

When Your Mama lived in New York City we would have gladly given the Dr. Cooter's left leg for a terrace. Mister Gunn, fortunately, will not have to sacrifice a limb for his commodious outdoor space where he can watch the sun rise over the Upper East Side and discreetly sunbathe his slender and girlish body should he choose to do so.

Your Mama begs the children to keep in mind that the current day-core is that of the seller and not that of Mister Gunn. So let's not get all wacky yakking about that obscene wall to wall white carpeting in the upstairs bathroom, the painfully purple walls in the dining room, or any of that crap in the living room because it's all going to be removed and reworked by, we hope, by Mister Gunn's nice gay decorator.

If Your Mama is being honest, and we always are, we are deeply concerned about the overwhelming architectural banality of this apartment and worry that it will take nothing short of a massive overhaul to bring the place up to snuff. So, like Mister Gunn, we're just going to hold our chin between our thumb forefinger, squint our eyes and tell him to, "Make it work," and hope for the best. Your Mama sincerely wishes Mister Gunn a happy new home and many congratulations on his recent television successes and encourage him to let us know if he needs a list of nice gay decorators to help him pull his new crib into shape.

Super Producer Brad Grey Buys New Bel Air Digs

Oooo-wee children, Your Mama bets Mister Nicolas Cage's real estate panties are all in a snit this week. While poor Mister Cage has whacked the asking price of his languishing on the market Copa de Oro Road residence from $35,000,000 to $19,750,000 and still not attracted a serious buyer, the property immediately next door sold off-market for what Your Mama hears was $22,000,000.

We first heard of the 8-figure transaction a week or so ago from the ever-accurate Nelly Knowsitall and then again later from Our Fairy Godmother in Bel Air who both whispered in our big ol' ear that the renovated residence was purchased by diminutive super-producer Brad Grey.

Mister Grey is currently chairman and chief executive of Paramount Pictures and his gilded hands have successfully produced scads of tee-vee programs including The Sopranos, Real Time with Bill Maher, Just Shoot Me, and The Larry Sanders Show. His impressive film credits include Running With Scissors (which was really a much better book than movie), The Departed, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, The Wedding Singer and The Cable Guy.

Anyhoo, it appears that the dignified white Colonial style crib–or maybe it's Georgian–with black shutters was never on the open market and as best as we can figure was sold by an heir of the recently deceased Franklin Otis Booth Jr. who made some of his billion or two bucks by doing bizness with Oracle of Omaha investor Warren Buffet. Records indicate that a trust controlled by Mister Booth purchased the property in May of 2003 from none other than, surprise!, next door neighbor Nicolas Cage.

Records show the "L" shaped house measures 10,616 square feet and includes four bedrooms and 7 terlits. Since we were unable to locate any listing information that's all the 411 we have on the house and we're just going to have to assume the property records on file with the County of Los Angeles are correct.

In addition to Mister Cage and one of his many real estate white elephants, nearby neighbors include Paris' parents Rick and Kathy Hilton and the sprawling, newly built multi-winged mansion of Benny Alagem who founded Packard Bell Electronics and now owns, among many other things, The Beverly Hills Hilton hotel

Given that Mister and Missus Grey are heading to the court of dee-vorce, it's unclear who will live in the Copa de Oro Road residence and who will live in the family's 13,143 square foot spread on Monaco Drive in the ritzy Riviera area of Pacific Palisades. Records reveal that Mister Grey also own an oceanfront getaway on a particularly posh stretch of sand on Broad Beach Road in Malee-boo where property records reveal nearby neighbors include aged lounge lizards Steve Lawrence and Eydie Gormé and tool tycoon Eric Smidt who in 2005 famously paid a reported $46,000,000 for the The Knoll, the late Marvin Davis' legendary and vast Beverly Hills estate.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

A Big Deal in Beverly Park

SELLER: Jeff Bazyler
BUYER: Some really rich Ukis
LOCATION: 40 Beverly Park, Beverly Hills, CA
PRICE: We don't know yet, but last listed at $31,500,000
SIZE: 27,000 square feet (approx.), 10 bedrooms, 14 bathrooms
DESCRIPTION: Remarkable new mansion never lived in stands 3 stories tall w/ a gorgeous waterfall running down its side. 27,000 sf on approx 2 acres of lush land. Designed by renowned architect Richard Landry. Features an unbelievable library with a glass floor overlooking 2500 bottle wine cellar, grand ballroom & astounding home theater. Full marble spa in basement, wet/dry massage rms, indoor pool & hot tub, fully landscaped yard (w/ permits for tennis court), outdoor pool w/ fountains and covered loggias.

YOUR MAMAS NOTES: Although big 8-figure deals are increasingly rare even in the rarefied and high-priced Platinum Triangle areas of Los Angeles, they have not stopped happening altogether. We recently received word from Our Fairy Godmother in Beverly Hills that a 27,000 square foot speck-built faux-Chateau at 40 Beverly Park that was last listed at $31,500,000 recently sold. That's right children, sold. S.O.L.D..

It is our understanding from Glinda the Good Witch that the seller and developer is a biznessman named Jeff Bazyler who heaved the over-sized mansard roofed monster manse onto the market in the fall of 2008 wit a mind-numbing asking price of $49,000,000. It wasn't long before the outrageously lavish property underwent several jumbo price chops (for obvious reasons we will not discuss) until it reached its last asking price of a much lower but still staggering $31,500,000.

At some point, the 10 bedroom and 14 bathroom behemoth was put up for lease with a monthly rent of $145,000. Boo-coo bucks by any standards, but nowhere near the rumored and reported two-hundred grand per month the Little Purple One Prince paid to lease another hotel sized house in Beverly Park last year. According to Glinda, a seemingly endless fountain of high-end and celebrity real estate scuttlebutt, there were no takers at that price.

Your Mama briefly described Mister Bazyler's palatial pile this way in a previous discussion in early March 2009 when we hadn't an inkling anyone was actually interested in writing a fat check for the place:

"The three stories of unrestrained opulence include monumental entertainment spaces including an honest to God ballroom, a poshly paneled circular library with a glass floor that looks down into a 2,500 bottle brick-lined wine cellar, a huge home theater, a marble spa in the basement that includes wet and dry massage rooms, a gigantic gym with mirrored walls, a hot tub and an indoor pool for all those chilly southern California winters. The grounds include a swimming pool, deep loggias for lazy afternoons lounging in the shade and the necessary permits for a tennis court. The necessary permits? Thirty one million bucks and you get permits for a tennis court? Pleeze. For that amount of money we don't only want a tennis court, Your Mama and the Dr. Cooter want a deeded to the property and scantily clad tennis pro available at day and night at a moment's notice."

Anyhoo, just when everyone, meaning Your Mama, thought none of those steroidal houses up in Beverly Park was ever going to sell, it happened. The moment we got wind of the sale, we got on the horn to see if we could sort out the identity of the deep-pocketed buyer. After several stabs in the dark and a couple of dead end roads, we heard from the all-knowing Nelly Knowsitall who whispered in Your Mama's big ear that the new owner–whose name she did not offer–are the same really rich Ukrainians–or Ukis as my not so rich Ukrainian pals call themselves–who recently flipped a mansion on Marilyn Drive in Beverly Hills on the market with an asking price of $24,000,000 after purchasing the place in November of 2007 for what records reveal was $17,500,000.

UPDATE LATER SAME DAY: Almost as quickly as we posted our discussion above we heard from Lucy Spillerguts who swears on her lacquered nails and fake boobs that the buyer is a ladee named Oksana Borzina, who may or may not be a front for some other shadowy figure who prefers not to be identified. Miz Borzina appears to be some sort of real estate investor/flipper who also owns two adjacent properties just above the Sunset Strip that records show were purchased for a total of $8,225,000 in 2006 and 2007 and flipped back on to the market in June of 2008 as a single property with a gutsy asking price of $14,600,000. The listing languished on the market for nearly a year and was price chopped to $10,900,000 before the two parcels were uncoupled and recently re-listed as two separate properties. The larger contemporary crib on Sunset Hills Road has an asking price of $8,500,000 while the much more modest property on Cory Avenue has an asking price of $1,995,000.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Tina Fey Gets All Uptown

BUYER: Tina Fey and Jeff Richmond
LOCATION: West End Avenue, New York, NY
PRICE: $3,400,000
SIZE: 4 bedrooms, 4.5 bathrooms
DESCRIPTION: Huge and gracious family home in premier full service pre-war coop....Private elevator landing leads to rooms of enormous proportions, 4 master bedrooms plus maid's room, eat-in kitchen, 20 x 19 dining room, 27.5 x 18.5 living room with WBFP and a peek of the river, plus library and 4.5 bathrooms.

YOUR MAMAS NOTES: Thanks to a gentleman we call The Legal Eagle, we were recently directed to a short story on the notoriously naughty Gawker website that reports six time Emmy winning writer/actress/comedienne Miss Tina Fey and her composer huzband Jeff Richmond dropped $3,400,000 for new digs on the Upper West Side of New York City.

Ever Miss Tina Fey became the head writer at Saturday Night Live in 1999, she's been comedic catnip. She co-hosted Weekend Update on SNL, wrote and starred in the movie Mean Girls, got herself a damn fine tee-vee show called 30 Rock, yes she did, and starred in a not very funny movie called Baby Mama with the usually very funny Amy Poehler. But her star turn, the bit that made Miss Tina Fey a household name, was her blistering, spot-on spoofs of former Republican Vice Presidential nominee Sarah Palin which even the right wingers of America have to admit were dee-lishus.

Located on West End Avenue, Miss Tina Fey's new spread, according to listing information, includes a private elevator landing, a central entrance hall, a dignified 27 and a half foot long corner living room with a working wood burning fireplace and a peekaboo view of the mighty Hudson River, and a dining room large enough that she could comfortably host a weenie roast for the the entire cast of 30 Rock.

Listing information shows the half floor sprawler was first listed nearly a year ago with an asking price of $4,100,000. The Gawker guys and gals divulged that the purchase price is $3,400,000. Given that property records for the unit have yet to clear the interweb location(s) Your Mama uses to check these things, we can't yet confirm or deny whether that purchase price is accurate.

Listing information indicates the apartment, which has windows on all four sides, includes 4 bedrooms and 4.5 bathrooms. Our beady little eyes count three principal bedrooms, each with a private pooper, and a fourth room that can be used as a family bedroom or a staff room or maybe a Pilates room since that form of exercise torture is so popular. The fourth (bed)room does not appear to have a direct connection to a terlit, but a full bathroom is accessible off a small room behind the kitchen. A powder room just off the foyer ensures Miss Tina Fey's guest will not need to enter the family's private quarters in order to do their pre-dinner coke snorting and/or after dinner dirty bizness.

Listing information also shows a 17+ foot long library, a kitchen with a large butler's pantry and the master bedroom features a large dressing room and a second non-functioning wood burning fireplace. The apartment is described in listing information as in "estate condition" which in real estate speak usually means some old person has been living up in there for a long time and that the apartment is in desperate need of a smart architect and a nice gay decorator to bring the place up to snuff.

If we were Miss Tina Fey, which obviously we are not, we'd just knock out that fourth (bed)room and bathroom–who really wants their household staff living up in their bizness anymore?–and open the space up to be a good sized family room. At the same time, we'd add a proper laundry room and convert the powder room to a full sized lavatory with a stand up shower.

We'd also recommend making some traffic flow changes to the master bedroom suite which would include closing off the door to the shared bathroom with the adjacent bedroom, moving the entrance to the room a few feet towards the front of the apartment, combining the small closet with the large walk-in from the adjacent bedroom, add a closet to the adjacent bedroom and then enlarge the bathroom by making the dressing room smaller. The plan still needs tweaking and the details need working out, but this is just a few apples to ponder about reworking the place.
According to CityFile and confirmed with property records, Miss Tina Fey and her man-mate Mister Richmond continue to own an 1,873 square foot apartment at 500 West End Avenue which they bought in early 2005 for $1,900,000 as well as a 659 square foot place on W. 85th Street they picked up in May of 2006 for $550,000 and reportedly use as an office.

The apartment is located in the same building where the fine boned musician/actor/activist Harry Belafonte famously combined two apartments into one sprawling and not particularly well feng shui-ed apartment. Mister Belafonte sold the 18-room spread in October of 2006 for $10,750,000 to Micky Mouse heiress Abigail Disney for $13.75M who quickly flipped the bitch back on the market with an asking price of $13,750,000 after deciding she didn't want to take on such a large residential renovation project after all. If we've said it once, we've said it a thousand-million times, rich and famous folks can be so damn fickle with their real estate choices. Miz Disny had a devil of a time selling her never occupied apartment but according to Josh Barbanel at the New York Times, she recently signed sales contracts but had to split the joined apartment back into two separate units to be sold to two different buyers. For anyone who cares, Miz Disney and her huzband Pierre Hauser forked over 12 and some million clams for an apartment at the newly converted 15 Madison Square North building.

Your Mama Hears...

...That Grammy winning R&B superstar Usher has been out and about looking at real estate in the City of Angels. According to our sexed-up snitch Luwanda Courvoisier, Mister Usher recently, "worked his milk chocolate skin up and down the twisted streets above the Sunset Strip" where he checked out at least one contemporary crib listed at "around 5.5 million bucks."

Although Mister Usher is married to and has a couple of kids with some ladee named Tameka who recently had a plastic surgery emergency in Brazil, the peeped property isn't exactly family friendly. We're not saying anything about Mister Usher's family life because we don't know eh-nee-thing about Mister Usher's family life. We are simply saying that Miz Courvoisier snickered that the glassy house in the hills is far more suitable to a bevy of horny babes in bikinis than a couple of small children and a newly liposuctioned mommy wife.

Of course, Your Mama got to wondering why Mister Usher even wants a house in Tinseltown. Best as we can figure, the man probably wants to be a movie star just like that over-blinged egomaniac Puff Daddy (or Diddy-P or Fiddle Faddle or whatever stoopid name he wants to be called nowadays) wishes he was. Queen, please. Stick to what you know, which is singing smooth, sappy songs meant to get women in the mood to make babies and leave the film business to actual actors.

Anyhoo, some of the children may recall that way back in September of 2007, the dapper Mister Usher listed his 8,022 square foot suburban Atlanta mansion with an asking price of $1,950,000. Listing information shows the 5 bedroom and 4.5 bathroom house in the celeb friendly Country Club of the South community is still available and, much to our surprise, has a slightly higher asking price of $1,995,000. Your Mama questions the wisdom of upping the asking price of a property even as the real estate markets continue to limp along like a lame horse. Then again, it's been proven over and over again that Your Mama don't know nuthin' from nuthin' about how to price property, particularly in suburban developments filled with newly built mcmansions.

Monday, April 20, 2009

A Nicolas Cage New Orleans Double Whammy

Prolific property collector Nicolas Cage continues to keep all us naughty celebrity real estate gossips busy as beavers trying to keep up with his still substantial but slowly shrinking real estate empire. In early 2008 the hairrific Oscar winning actor sold his waterfront house in Newport Beach, CA to a gas station mogul for thirty some million dollars. More recently he managed to get rid of a little used 28-room schloss in Bavaria which he, puzzlingly, to his German advisor.

As far as Your Mama knows (and we really don't know nuthin'), Mister Cage continues to own luxury real estate in San Francisco, Las Vegas, the Bahamas, two high floor apartments in New York City's Olympic Tower on a fancy stretch of Fifth Avenue, and the UK–where he has a four story Georgian style townhouse in Bath and an 18th century castle. He also owns a handful of houses currently languishing on the open market including his brick built and ivy covered spread on Copa de Oro Road in Bel Air, CA which has been price slashed from $35,000,000 to $19,750,000. Also for sale (at least the last we checked) is an undeveloped 45-acre private island in the Bahamas, an ass-uglee house in a gated community in Las Vegas, a 24,000+ square foot manor house in Middletown, RI and two historic houses in Loo-zee-anna's Big Easy which–against our better judgement–we're going to spend the morning discussing.

SELLER: Nic Cage
LOCATION: Prytania Street, New Orleans, LA
PRICE: $3,450,000
SIZE: 13,176 square feet, 6 bedrooms, 5 full and 2 half bathrooms
DESCRIPTION: The most superlative of Garden District mansions with the best of every amenity. Ample room for a large family and big-time entertainment venue with formal gardens, parking, and everything anyone could possibly want in a most grand of grand, star-quality home.

YOUR MAMAS NOTES: The first of the two properties we're going to chat about is Mister Cage's big ol' house in the Big Easy's gorgeous Garden District which first arrived on the open market sometime in the fall of 2008 with an asking price of $3,700,000. After six or so long months of sitting around without a serious buyer, the asking price now stands at $3,450,000 which property records reveal to be the exact same amount for which Mister Cage bought the house in June of 2005.

Before Mister Cage, the three story grande dame on Prytania Street was owned by several other notable characters including the Catholic Church who gave it the wonderfully ridiculous name of Our Mother of Perpetual Help Chapel. The corner property later fell into the hands of the formerly brooding now Christian author Anne Rice who sold it to antiques dealer Reuban "Buzz" Harper who had a famous flair for turgid day-core and who, in turn, sold it to our Mister Cage.

Listing information shows the 13-room "L" shaped mansion measures a considerable 13,176 square feet and includes 6 bedrooms, 5 full and 2 half bathrooms. There are wide covered porches with flamboyant iron balustrades on the main and second floors, four kitchens and an elevator that does not appear to rise to the third floor. Perhaps most remarkable about Mister Cage's crib is the vast living and dining room area on the first floor which spans over more than 2,000 square feet of high-ceilinged architectural elegance that features extremely high-gloss wood floors, intricate plaster mouldings and ceiling medallions, four fireplaces and a swooping staircase that could raise Norma Desmond from the grave.

Your Mama wishes we had such florid words for the day-core which manages to be lackluster and lifeless despite the dramatic length of the dining room table and the campy period furniture. But we don't. Also, it seems unlikely that a home of this age would have been built with such loft-like public spaces. Even though we thrill at the idea of roller skating in the nood around the giant room, the architectural purist in Your Mama wishes the public rooms had been maintained as their original, properly proportioned and separate chambers.

Anyhoo, behind the dining room is a large, chef friendly kitchen with white cabinetry, granite counters, beige tile floors, navy colored walls and somewhat bizarrely, a red ceiling. The main floor is completed by a laundry room, a small room of unknown usage, a half bathroom and a master suite comprised of a medium sized bedroom, 33-foot long walk in closet and a bathroom that only Victoria Gotti (and Nic Cage) could love with its spectacularly silly spa tub set in the center of the room and surrounded by columns .

The second floor includes a landing/sitting room and a second master suite with a dressing room, large bathroom and access to two balconies. Another suite of rooms on the second floor includes a mini-kitchen, a commodious closet, an elevator landing and both a full and a half bathroom. The extreme rear of the second floor is a separate staff or guest suite with bathroom, walk in closet and eat in kitchen.

The lone terlit on the third floor is located off the large landing which separates two suites of rooms. One side contains yet another small kitchen and a couple of sitting rooms painted an eye-popping and grimace making shade of hot pink and then further punished with banal brown leather furniture, crushed velvet drapery, heavily carved wood pieces and a couple of wall mounted flat screen boob-toobs. The other two rooms on the opposite side of the landing are, we presume, bedrooms.

The grounds include well tended box hedges that surround a terrace with formal gardens and a gurgling fountain as well as a large brick terrace that encircles an in-ground swimming pool. Listing information also indicates there is off street parking, but honestly children, we can't figure out where that is or how many automobiles can be parked on the property.

Given that Mister Cage owns at least two (some say three) houses in New Orleans, it's unclear whether he and his much younger wifey and child occupy this house or the blood soaked and rumored to be haunted LaLaurie house, which is also currently for sale.

SELLER: Nicolas Cage
LOCATION: Royal Street, New Orleans, LA
PRICE: $3,550,000
SIZE: 10,284 square feet, 6 bedrooms, 6 full and 2 half bathrooms
DESCRIPTION: One of the most beautiful homes in America. This home was originally built for French royalty and all the details of this period show it. Named the LaLaurie Mansion and known for its ghostly history, it is the height of superlative. if you want the best of the best, then here it is! Galleries, widow's walks, parking and prime location.

YOUR MAMAS NOTES: Although he already owned one house over in the Garden District, in December of 2006 Mister Cage could not resist his historical real estate desiring demons and spent what records show was $3,450,000 to purchase a second home in New Orleans.

According to listing information, the four floor French quarter mansion, commonly known as the LaLaurie House, was originally built for French royalty. However, it was later owners Dr. Louis Lalaurie and his wife Delphine who moved into the house in the early 1830s and who gave the property both its name and its witchy and macabre reputation as a house of unspeakable horrors. Mister and Missus Lalaurie were prominent pillars of New Orleans high society and well known for their lavish parties and for swanning around town with their impeccably dressed daughters. However, the couple had a deeply perverted and bloodcurdling dark side that will scare the skin right off the children.

Like many big living rich folks of that era, the Lalaurie House was taken care of by slaves. Sadly, and although it wasn't uncommon for slaves to be mistreated, Mister and Missus Lalaurie launched slave abuse into an entirely new and savagely sadistic realm of hell. The cook, the same one who prepared feasts for the Lalaurie family and their friends, was allegedly kept chained to the fireplace in the kitchen. Missus Lalaurie, whip in hand, was seen by a neighbor chasing her personal servant up to the roof of the house from where the tortured young girl leaped to her death. Later, authorities investigated and found a secret door in the attic behind which more than a dozen brutally abused slaves were chained to the wall and locked in cages. There were reportedly severed body parts strewn about the floor and decapitated heads in buckets. Some of the men had their private parts lopped off and a hole had been drilled into the top of the head of one male victim where a stick was inserted to "stir" his brain. More than a couple women had been cut open, their intestines pulled out and tied around their waists. Another woman had her arms and legs ruthlessly amputated and yet another had all of her limbs broken and re-set at alarming and unnatural angles. Shockingly, the Lalauries managed to escape authorities and their barbaric crimes against humanity were never prosecuted. It's unknown what fate befell the sick and twisted Lalauries, but Karma is a bitch children and even though it pains and challenges our own Karma to say so, Your Mama can only hope they met an untimely and hideously painful end.

Anyhoo, property records and multiple reports show Mister Cage picked up his haunted house in December of 2006. Records also reveal that Mister Cage paid $3,450,000 for the six bedroom house which has 8 terlits divided into six full and 2 half bathrooms. The property was first listed in the fall of 2008 with an asking price of $3,900,000 but has since been karate chopped to $3,550,000. It doesn't take even a brief consult with our bejeweled abacus to determine that when the property sells and after the fat real estate fees are paid, Mister Cage will likely lose boo-coo bucks on his real estate folly.

The sinister looking grey lady lords over the corner of Royal and Governor Nicholls Streets, measures 10,284 square feet, according to listing information, and wraps around a brick courtyard filled with a bunch of raggedy looking trees and potted plants. The house is entered on the ground floor through a narrow foyer with a classy black and white checkerboard floor. To the right of the entrance are two generously proportioned reception rooms, each with a gray and yellow marble fireplace surround, gray and white checkerboard floors, tall windows, built in book cases, a bunch of kooky Gothik meets Art Deco furniture and some really wretched looking paintings. Much to Your Mama's chagrin and dismay, it is our humble and meaningless opinion that these are indeed the best rooms of the house in terms of day-core. Behind these rooms is a pooper for the guests and small suite of rooms used for we don't know what. To the right of the foyer is a staff or guest suite with sitting room, kitchenette, full bathroom and bedroom. At the rear of the property is a garage that looks large enough to hold one big car or perhaps two itty-bitty but impossibly cute FourTwo Smart cars which would be perfect for tooling around the French Quarter and down to the the Jolie-Pitts place on Governor Nicholls Street.

The main part of the second floor contains the primary public rooms which include the dining room, a butlers pantry, a 1980s looking kitchen with some updated appliances and a double parlor style living room with wood floors, elaborate pilasters and pediments, dee-voon dentil ceiling moulding and a hodgepodge of unfortunate leather and brocade furniture. On the walls hang more of that upsetting artwork that, we're sorry Mister Cage, makes our flesh crawl. At the rear of the second floor there are two staff or guest suites with small kitchens and bathrooms that open to a balcony that wraps around the courtyard below. A mezzanine level contains two more staff or guest suites each with a small kitchen and bathroom.

Up on the third floor are the principle family bedrooms. Each of the bedrooms has its own private pooper and the master features a good sized bathroom and a walk in closet for all of Mister Cage's black jeans and leather jackets.

While it is well known that Mister Cage owns the Lalaurie House and a giant house in the Garden District, it has been reported (and whispered in Your Mama's big ear by Little Mary) that he and his family actually live next door when they are in town. Perhaps the viscious history and lingering bad juju makes the Lalaurie House simply too frightening to live. Or maybe Mister Cage is just strange like that.

Eventually, of course, Mister Cage will either make a butt load of money that will enable him to keep all his many dee-luxe digs or they will sell at prices that will surely leave him a few hundred grand (or maybe even a few million) in the hole. What is clear is that according to a recent interview in a German publication regarding the sale of his Bavarian schloss, Mister Cage said, "Due to the difficult economic situation, unfortunately, I was no longer able to keep it." Pity that.