Got the blues, brother?

Times Staff Writer

Think buying and selling a house these days is migraine-inducing?

Multiply it times four and pass the Excedrin to Dan Aykroyd.

The comic actor and his wife, Donna Dixon, paid $14.5 million in February for a 5,244-square-foot house in Pacific Palisades that wasn’t listed in the Multiple Listing Service.

Just two months earlier, they sold their 4,828-square-foot home on Woodrow Wilson Drive to “Vacation” star Beverly D’Angelo (you know, the actress who looks like Lauren Hutton) for $3.8 million, according to public records. It’s a five- or six-bedroom, 5 1/2-bathroom, two-story home built in 1951 and has a pool and six fireplaces. (Apparently, there is no such thing as too many fireplaces.) The original listing price was $4.2 million back in November.

Then Aykroyd sold another property for $2.13 million in the Sunset Strip area that he owned with his brother, Peter. This 1922 Colonial-style house has three bedrooms and 2 1/2 bathrooms in about 4,100 square feet.


Lastly, Aykroyd and Dixon listed their 3,400-square-foot, three-story condo on Manhattan’s Upper East Side for $7 million. It has four bedrooms, 4 1/2 bathrooms and unobstructed views of the Manhattan skyline, including the Empire State and Chrysler buildings. The town house occupies the top three floors of a 47-story postwar, full-service building with a 24-hour doorman, concierge and high-speed elevators.

New York listing agent Roger Erickson from Sotheby’s International Realty reports no serious nibbles yet.

One purchase, two sales and one listing still active: Is Aykroyd a glutton for punishment or what?

The 55-year-old Aykroyd came on the public’s radar in the 1970s as a cast member of “Saturday Night Live.” His popular Blues Brothers routine with John Belushi remains a pop-culture staple. He is filming “Ghost Busters: The Video Game” and was in the 2007 movie “I Now Pronounce You Chuck and Larry.”

Barry Sloane of Sotheby’s International Realty was the listing agent on the two Los Angeles properties that sold, according to the MLS.

Geffen expands Carbon footprint

Media mogul David Geffen apparently can’t get enough of Malibu’s Carbon Beach. He recently spent about $10 million on a 1,473-square-foot, two-bedroom house near his main beachfront home. The house sits on a 45-foot strip of beautiful beach and is already leased out.


What makes the transaction interesting is that Geffen owned this same property once before. He bought it in 1996 for about $1.2 million and sold it two years later to Richard Lovett, president of Creative Artists Agency, for an undisclosed amount, according to public records. Then, in 2007, it was bought by Peter Morton, co-founder of the Hard Rock Cafe chain, who sold it back to Geffen earlier this year.

Geffen’s own multi-lot, Cape Cod-style palace along the stretch of oceanfront known as Billionaires’ Beach shares sand with neighbors including Oracle Chief Executive Larry Ellison and Haim Saban, the “Mighty Morphin Power Rangers” tycoon. The eastern outcropping of Carbon Beach is called Dealmakers’ Rock because so much Hollywood business is conducted there.

Geffen recently completed a major renovation of the Malibu Beach Inn, a 47-room luxury Carbon Beach hotel where summer room rates are as high as $850 a night for a 600-square-foot waterfront suite.

A few local real estate agents -- perhaps with bruised feelings since Geffen’s purchase was handled sans brokers -- wonder if he is planning something grander with his multiple holdings along Carbon Beach. There is speculation that he envisions turning that stretch of Malibu into an exclusive destination resort for the world’s wealthiest visitors. But for now, the latest acquisition is just a rental.

Smell of jasmine in the morning

Add this to your list of life’s regrets: You may never sleep on the same pillow as Robert Duvall. I know; I’m weeping too.

Duvall and his Argentine wife, Luciana, have sold their House of Jasmines, the seven-room boutique hotel near Salta, in northern Argentina, that they owned and frequented. A representative for the new owner would not disclose the sales price.

Duvall and many of his American actor friends, including Brad Pitt and Richard Gere, have stayed in the luxury inn, where, before the sale, a picture of Duvall in a cowboy hat hung prominently over the fireplace.

One of the inn’s greatest attractions was the possibility of having a close encounter with a major celebrity.

The 120-year-old ranch sits on about 300 acres in the foothills of the Andes Mountains, and the theme is definitely horsy. It’s decorated with rustic colonial furniture, saddles and horse-themed prints.

Either by horseback or on foot, guests can roam the grounds, which are filled with sweet-smelling roses, orchids and, of course, the ubiquitous jasmine for which the colonial estancia is named. It had been managed by Duvall’s sister-in-law, Florencia Pedraza.

Each of the seven rooms is different, and all have four-poster beds, antique furniture and fluffy duvets.

Miles of trails and open fields surround a swimming pool and a rose garden. The farmhouse is close to Salta’s airport, and is about a 15-minute drive from the city center.

The 77-year-old Oscar-winning Duvall is known for his roles in “The Godfather” and “Tender Mercies.” He delivered one of Hollywood’s most memorable lines -- “I love the smell of napalm in the morning” -- as Lt. Col. Kilgore in the 1979 film “Apocalypse Now.” The six-time Oscar nominee stars in the upcoming film “Glad All Over.”

End of his term in Beverly Hills

Now, to add a little decorum to the proceedings. Former U.S. Secretary of State Warren Christopher, a fixture on the national political scene, has listed his gracious Connecticut farmhouse-style home near Beverly Hills at $3,259,000.

Christopher and his wife, the former Marie Wyllis, have purchased a two-bedroom, 2 1/2 -bathroom condominium in a gated Century City community. Their new 2,400-square-foot home has high ceilings, hardwood floors, French doors and a fireplace. They plan to customize it before taking occupancy.

The one-story, 4,000-square-foot house that they are selling has three bedrooms, three bathrooms and a convertible den/family room. There is a large country kitchen and a service wing. A separate guest studio has a private bath. The whole shebang sits on an 18,000-square-foot lot, unusually large for the area.

Adding charm to the already charming 1930s home are its authentic period architectural details: oversized ceiling beams, cedar siding, plank hardwood floors and blacksmith-forged hardware -- doorknobs and hinges. The home sits among sycamore and birch trees and has an expansive lawn and gardens. There is a pool and entertainment patio.

Christopher served under President Clinton as the 63rd secretary of State. As deputy secretary of State under President Carter, he received the Medal of Freedom -- the nation’s highest civilian award -- for his role in negotiating the release of 52 American hostages in Iran. And in Los Angeles, he was chairman of the independent commission that bore his name, which made recommendations to reform the city’s Police Department after the Rodney King beating incident.

Christopher’s roots in the L.A. area run deep, and he has lived in the Beverly Hills area home since the 1970s. He is the senior partner at O’Melveny & Myers law firm.

Coldwell Banker Beverly Hills North agent Stephen Baker, who represented the Christophers in both buying and selling, said they intend to split their time between Century City and their longtime home in the Santa Barbara area.


To see previous columns on celebrity realty transactions, go to