Goetz Estate on the Market

Times Staff Writer

Art lovers got a preview last week, at the Beverly Hills Hotel, of the fabulous Goetz collection of Impressionist and modern paintings and sculpture, which will be auctioned by Christie’s on Nov. 14 in New York.

And that brings to mind: The Goetz estate in Holmby Hills is for sale.

It’s only $12 million--a lot, sure, but not much compared to what the 29 works of art are expected to fetch--at least $50 million!

(Among the paintings is Picasso’s 1901 work “Maternite,” which could go for as much as $10 million. Exhibited in the same room with the art was a 407.48-carat diamond, worth at least $20 million. It wasn’t owned by the Goetzes but will be the largest diamond ever auctioned when it’s offered by Christie’s Oct. 19. Imagine holding that in your hand! It was nice!!)


Sale of the art and Holmby Hills estate will benefit Judith Shepherd of Beverly Hills and Barbara Windom of Malibu, daughters of the late William and Edith (Edie) Mayer Goetz. William Goetz, a Hollywood producer, died in 1969, but his wife, one of the two daughters of movie mogul Louis B. Mayer, died this past June at age 83. (His younger daughter, Irene Mayer Selznick, who was once married to the late Hollywood genius David O. Selznick, lives in New York.)

The Goetz house, a 17,000-square-foot Georgian with a pool house, was built in 1934 on two flat acres at 300 Delfern Drive, described as “about the best address in town.” It certainly was for years while the Goetzes, married in 1930, held legendary dinner parties for such stars as David Niven, Loretta Young, Joan Crawford, Judy Garland and Cary Grant. It’s listed with Norman Foster of Mimi Styne Realtors, Beverly Hills.

With scheduling of the space shuttle Discovery’s launch last Thursday, John Solie, described as “the only artist chosen by NASA to sketch and paint the launch and landing (planned Monday),” put his Santa Monica Canyon home on the market for $550,000 so he and his wife can move to a secluded property in Oregon. Solie already completed one painting for NASA to memorialize the crew of the space shuttle Challenger.

His Santa Monica house has two bedrooms, a family room, studio, four fireplaces and a view of the ocean, which is only a block away. Karen Walton of Fred Sands’ Santa Monica office has the listing.

Where oh where will the American Cinematheque go? After years of talk about the planned project as a movie buff’s paradise (with film and video theaters and a multimedia performance lab) . . . and after more than a year of silence on the subject (since Gary Essert, project artistic director, announced in May, 1987, that the center would not be located in the Pan Pacific Auditorium as originally planned), we should finally learn where its permanent site will be at a press conference Thursday at the Columbia Bar and Grill in Hollywood.

And in case you didn’t know . . . Jon Jerde, designer of the banners and flags for the ’84 Olympics in L.A., is the architect. (Cinematheque offices moved Friday from the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel to 1717 N. Highland Ave.)


Bi-coastal resident James Spada, who wrote the best seller “Grace: The Secret Lives of a Princess” and just signed a contract with Bantam Books to write a biography on the late actor Peter Lawford, has purchased a Craftsman-style house in the Hollywood foothills. He was renting here.

Spada will restore the house but just left for London to research his new book, says Tim Enright of the Enright Co. in L.A., which represented Spada in the home acquisition.

Besides Mayor Sonny Bono, racing legend Parnelli Jones was at a press conference a few days ago at the Los Angeles Hilton to publicize the Palm Springs Vintage Grand Prix Nov. 18-20. And, if you’re wondering what this has to do with real estate . . . Jones asked, “When are you going to write about Rolling Hills? It has some four- and five-acre homes, equestrian facilities and lots of open space.”

Rolling Hills isn’t as pricey as some enclaves on the West Side, but it has at least one famous resident: Parnelli Jones.

Actress Jane Seymour and her business manager/husband David Flynn have sold another house they renovated, and they received more than its $995,000 asking price, says Jana Jones of Alvarez, Hyland & Young, who represented the sellers.

The Flynns have a beautiful home in the Santa Barbara area but have been buying, fixing up and selling Beverly Hills houses as an investment. “They have another they’re working on, which will be priced at about $1.5 million,” Jones said.

Odyssey Entertainment (producer of the movie, “Memories of Me,” starring Billy Crystal, Alan King and Jobeth Williams, which opened last week) just moved into its new quarters--11,650 square feet or almost a full floor--at the 6500 Wilshire Blvd. high-rise owned by Prentiss Properties. The $2.4-million, eight-year lease was negotiated by Joy Hurtig of the L.A. Beitler Commercial Realty Services office and John B. Stern of Prentiss.

How low can you go--when it comes to inventory of homes out there? A Beverly Hills broker, who asked for anonymity, tells this story about the Gabor sisters, Eva and Zsa Zsa:

“Both had their homes for sale, but soon after Zsa Zsa raised the price on hers from $6.9 million to $10 million, Eva took hers--at $5.9 million--off the market.” Why? “She was brought an offer of $4 million. She countered at $4.5 million. The people making the offers came up to $4.4 million. She panicked, couldn’t find anything out there to buy, so took her house off the market.”