Amazon king’s domain

Times Staff Writer

For Jeffrey Bezos, the brains behind, 1994 was a very good year.

Bezos started his “virtual” bookstore in 1994, and now the 43-year-old entrepreneur has purchased a house built in 1994 that -- at close to $30 million -- was one of the highest-priced sales in Beverly Hills in recent years.

The chief executive has come a long way since launching his online store from his garage. And he hopes to go even further. Bezos has bankrolled a company with an eye toward developing rockets for human flight.

As for his new home, Bezos has more than enough room to expand his horizons. The Spanish-style estate is on more than 2 acres and has seven bedrooms and seven bathrooms in nearly 12,000 square feet.

The grounds have rolling lawns, a formal garden, a long, gated drive, a pool and a sunken tennis court. There is a separate guesthouse, a six-car garage and a motorcourt.


The house also has soaring, beamed ceilings and tile detailing, a media room, a gym, an office, a veranda, a patio for outdoor entertaining and city views.

Joyce Rey of Coldwell Banker, Beverly Hills South, had the listing, according to the Multiple Listing Service.

Sue Ellen wants off the ranch

As Sue Ellen, the wife of J.R. Ewing on the series “Dallas,” Linda Gray has done her share of living on a make-believe ranch. She also has lived for the last 20 years on a 3-acre Santa Clarita property that could be described as “a gentlewoman’s ranch.”

But the actress, 66, is ready for a change, and she has put her home on the market at $3.25 million.

Divorced in the ‘80s and with her children grown and moved away, Gray wants to live closer to friends, according to co-listing agent Jonathan Canter.

The home, built in 1973, was designed by architect A. Quincy Jones, known for his modernist-style buildings.

It has five bedrooms and four bathrooms in about 4,500 square feet.

Other features are stainless-steel kitchen appliances, a wood-burning pizza oven and a great room with high ceiling beams, antique wood paneling and floor-to-ceiling windows.

The home also has a two-story guesthouse with a main room for movie screenings or playing games. There is an artist’s studio plus an outdoor fireplace, a tennis court and a pool.

As for its ranch amenities, the property has a working stable, a groomsmen shed, a chicken coop and an organic herb garden.

Kay Pick and Canter, both of Coldwell Banker, Beverly Hills North, have the listing.

An ‘Idol’ maker changes squares

Dorian Holley, a vocal coach on “American Idol,” and his wife, Shawn Chapman Holley, a former member of the O.J. Simpson defense team and a legal analyst for E! network and other TV channels, have purchased an Italian Renaissance Revival home in gated Lafayette Square in Los Angeles’ mid-city for $1.5 million. The 3,500-square-foot home was built in 1923.

The buyers plan to keep their home in Wellington Square, also in the mid-city area, and lease it out for $3,000 a month.

Dorian Holley has toured as a background singer with Michael Jackson, Rod Stewart and Queen Latifah. Shawn Chapman Holley, formerly with the Cochran Firm, is a partner of attorney Howard Weitzman, at Kinsella Weitzman Iser Kump & Aldisert, Santa Monica, and the two attorneys have represented Paris Hilton and Nicole Richie.

John Gould at Coldwell Banker, Beverly Hills North, had the listing, and Gloria Jackson of Probate & Estate Real Estate Co. represented the buyers.

... And a musical pair switches keys

John Trivers and Liz Myers, composers known for their arrangements of Gershwin’s “Rhapsody in Blue” for a United Airlines TV commercial, have moved into a newly built home in Manhattan Beach.

The married couple bought a modern Cape Cod-style home for about $6 million. It has three bedrooms and 3 1/2 bathrooms in 3,000 square feet. Lazar Design/Build of Manhattan Beach designed and built the home.

Myers, a conductor for the Broadway show “Grease,” co-wrote “Shakin’ ” with Eddie Money. Trivers, a bass player, has performed with Tina Turner.

Producer’s perch: Wilshire high-rise

Humberto Gatica -- the Chilean-born music producer who has worked with singers Andrea Bocelli, Michael Buble, Josh Groban and Olivia Newton-John -- has purchased a high-rise condo on Wilshire for close to $1.8 million.

The renovated unit has two bedrooms and 2 1/2 bathrooms in 2,200 square feet, and there are views of the ocean and Bel-Air. The 22-story building was constructed in 1982.

Gatica won his first Grammy in 1984 for his engineering work on the album “17" by Chicago, an achievement he repeated in 1987 for his work with Bruce Swedien on “Bad” by Michael Jackson. Further Grammys followed for his work with Celine Dion and, in 2000, on La Ley’s “Uno” album.

He won Latin Grammys in 2002 in both the album-of-the-year and record-of-the-year categories for his work on “MTV Unplugged” by Alejandro Sanz and another one in 2004 for La Ley’s “Libertad.”

Jane Siegal of Coldwell Banker, Beverly Hills North, had the listing, according to the Multiple Listing Service.

To see previous columns on celebrity realty transactions, go to