More Room for His Grammys

TIMES STAFF WRITER

Grammy Award-winning singer-songwriter-producer Kenneth "Babyface" Edmonds and his wife and business partner, Tracey Edmonds, have purchased a Holmby Hills home for nearly $13 million.

Edmonds, 40, has written songs for Whitney Houston, Michael Jackson and Madonna, and he has created more than 100 R&B; and pop hits. His wife, 32, is president of the record company Yab Yum, and she is president and chief executive of Edmonds Entertainment, which produces movies. In their first one, "Soul Food" (1997), she had a cameo role. She also heads Edmonds Management, which provides career guidance to TV and movie actors.

Escrow closed Tuesday on the couple's new home, a 20,000-square-foot, Palladian-style house on 2 1/2 acres near the Playboy Mansion. Built in 1990 on the site of a home once owned by Jack Benny, the house was sold by psychologist and author Irene Kassorla and her investor husband, Norman.

The estate, listed at $18.9 million in October, has a main house with four bedrooms and staff quarters, a guest house with two bedrooms and an office, a pool with a pavilion and five kitchens. The dining room can seat 40. The gated estate also has a 50-foot-long reflection pool, a sunken tennis court and a motor court for 50 cars.

The Edmondses are selling their former home, also in Holmby Hills, for about $6.3 million, sources said. That home is about 12,000 square feet and on an acre with gardens, a pool, pool house, sauna and gym. The seven-bedroom home was built in 1989.

Kassorla and her husband have been looking for a smaller home in the L.A. area, and they have said they plan to build a house in Italy.

Raymond Bekeris of John Bruce Nelson & Associates represented the Edmondses in buying their new home; Ronnie Kassorla, the sellers' daughter, had the listing with the same realty firm.

Kelly Lange, who left KNBC-TV earlier this year after anchoring the news there for 28 years, has listed her Mulholland-area home at $2.75 million.

Lange, who was one of the highest paid anchors in Los Angeles, quit her KNBC job when her contract expired, expressing her desire to pursue other opportunities.

Lange's first novel, the murder-mystery "Trophy Wife," was published in 1995. Her second one, "Gossip" (Simon & Schuster) came out last year. She has started work on a third.

In June, after she received the 1999 Los Angeles Area Governors Award from the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences, she joined KRLA-AM (1110) as a Sunday talk-show host.

Lange has built and refurbished a number of homes in the L.A. area. She customized the house she has listed. She has owned it for about 4 1/2 years. She has purchased a house in the Beverly Hills area, which she is renovating.

Built in 1993, the house she listed has six bedrooms in 10,000 square feet. The three-story Mediterranean-style house has city views, a library, gym, sauna, wine cellar, pool and spa.

Joy Denton of Sotheby's International Realty, Beverly Hills, has the listing.

Nancy O'Dell, co-host with Pat O'Brien of the syndicated TV show "Access Hollywood," and her husband, Dr. Richard O'Dell, have purchased a home in the West Valley for about $1.4 million.

Before joining "Access Hollywood," she was a co-anchor in Miami.

The Mediterranean-style house, in a gated community, has five bedrooms in nearly 6,000 square feet. Built eight years ago, the house also has an entertainment center that cost an estimated $150,000 to build and a dining room that sits 20.

Jim Pascucci of Re/Max Center in Encino had the listing, and Jad Najjar of Prudential-John Aaroe & Associates, Beverly Hills, represented the O'Dells.

Director-actor David Nelson, the older son of Ozzie and Harriet, and his wife, interior decorator Yvonne Nelson, have sold their Encino home for about $900,000 to a businessman from the East Coast and his family.

The Nelsons had lived in the 3,000-square-foot house on an acre for 17 years. Built in 1952, the Cape Cod-style house has a country decor designed by Yvonne Nelson. She and her husband have been building a home in Newport Beach.

David Nelson, 62, appeared on his parents' TV show "The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet," which aired on ABC from 1952 to 1966. In recent years, he has directed TV commercials and promotional films.

Carol Hurwitz of Hurwitz-James, Brentwood, represented the buyers, and Connie Nelson of Coldwell Banker Previews, Studio City, had the listing.

A Tarzana home built as a weekend retreat for actress Marion Davies in the 1930s has been listed at just under $1.7 million.

The current owners, former clothiers Patty and Ron Ross, have owned the home for 22 years. "We are the fourth owners," she said. Besides Davies, former owners include actor James MacArthur and his wife, actress Joyce Bulifant, and, at another time, TV producer Ralph Andrews.

Davies had the house built to look like a carriage house she had seen in Germany. Construction started in 1935, and it was completed in 1942. A gigantic oak tree, which is a neighborhood landmark, stands in front of the wood-and-stone house.

The house has 3-foot thick walls and large recessed window screens "so you can open up the whole living room," Patty Ross said. The house, which has four bedrooms in about 4,000 square feet plus a guest house, is on 1.5 acres with a long, private drive.

Barry Sloane and Heidi Lake of Fred Sands Estates, Beverly Hills, have the listing.

There has been a jump in sales of Westside homes at more than $2.5 million each, from 140 for the first six months of 1998 to 162 for the same period of this year.

Of the 162, 37 sold at prices above $5 million each, in contrast with 24 for January to mid-June of last year. In the over $7 million category, there have been 13 so far this year compared to 10 for the first six months of 1998.

"The new money buying these houses is generated by computer and Internet businesses," said Cecelia Waeschle of Coldwell Banker Previews, Beverly Hills. Waeschle has tracked L.A.'s high-end market since 1987.

Did you miss Thursday's Hot Property column in Southern California Living? Want to see previous columns on celebrity real estate transactions? Visit http://www.latimes.com/hotproperty.

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