Hot Property: French Montana looks to double his money on Hidden Hills home


Rapper French Montana is shooting for the stars in Hidden Hills. Four years after buying Selena Gomez’s Mediterranean mansion for $3.3 million, he’s trying to double his money by listing the property for sale at $6.599 million.

The steep price hike reflects a bit of remodeling. The rapper painted over Gomez’s bold tones of purple and turquoise and added a $400,000 recording studio in the guesthouse. Other amenities include a gym, a movie theater and a wine cellar.

The three-acre compound centers on a custom home of 7,800 square feet. Dark hardwood accents offset bright shades of white and tan in the expansive living spaces, which include a two-story great room, chef’s kitchen, breakfast nook and formal dining room.


There’s a massage chair in the master suite, as well as a spa tub and steam shower. It’s one of five bedrooms along with six bathrooms across two stories.

Outside, hanging lights top a tile courtyard with a fountain. In the entertainer’s backyard, patios and lawns surround a swimming pool and spa. A dining cabana with a brick pizza oven and an elephant statue shrouded in ivy complete the scene.

Gabriel Palmrot of Douglas Elliman holds the listing.

A prolific mixtape artist, Montana has released more than a dozen during his career in addition to three studio albums — the most recent of which, “Montana,” dropped in 2019. His hits include “Pop That,” “Unforgettable” and “No Stylist.”

Actor double-dips in sale

A two-for-one special did the trick for Forest Whitaker, who has sold a pair of properties on a combined lot in the Hollywood Hills for $3.85 million.


The Oscar-winning actor had been trying to unload the homes for the last three years, offering them separately in 2018 for $3.5 million and $1.5 million. Last fall, he put the complete compound up for sale at $3.995 million.

Each boasts its own entrance and driveway, but they share a gated 1.6-acre lot with a swimming pool and spa surrounded by landscaped patios and secluded nooks. In total, the houses combine for 11 bedrooms and 11 bathrooms across 6,700 square feet.

The larger home clocks in at 4,700 square feet, offering expansive living spaces with a more dramatic style. There’s a voluminous great room with dual staircases, as well as a dining room, a living room and a center-island kitchen.

Upstairs, a master suite with a corner fireplace enjoys a spa tub and balcony. Down below, there’s an entertainer’s den with a game room and custom shelving accessed by a ladder.

Across the property, the smaller home covers 2,000 square feet. Its three-story floor plan feels a bit more relaxed with brighter living spaces marked by white walls and carpet. There’s a den with a fireplace, a tile kitchen and a movie theater with tiered seating.


The 58-year-old Whitaker took home an Academy Award for best actor for his role in the 2006 film “The Last King of Scotland.” More recently, the Texas native starred as Saw Gerrera in “Rogue One: A Star Wars Story” and as Zuri in “Black Panther.”

Michael Nourmand and Adam Sires of Nourmand & Associates held the listing, according to the Wall Street Journal. Charles H. Le of ReMax Estate Properties represented the buyer.

The new king of Trousdale

Former Los Angeles Kings left wing Ilya Kovalchuk, who was waived by the team in December, has bought a home in the Trousdale section of Beverly Hills for $11.2 million.

The single-story house, built in 2018, has clean lines, slabs of ribboned marble and pocketing doors that take in city and ocean views. Some 6,200 square feet of interior holds a subdued chef’s kitchen with an island, a formal dining room, an office, five bedrooms and 5.5 bathrooms. A wet bar sits in the far corner of the open-concept living room.


Outside, grounds of more than half an acre center on a swimming pool with a raised spa and baja deck. A dining pavilion and built-in barbecue sit across from the pool.

The property originally came up for sale in early 2018 for $16.888 million and was more recently listed for $11.495 million.

“Beverly Hills real estate is an international luxury brand that is a tried and true investment,” Rodeo Realty agent Michael Rabbani said. “Buying real estate in Beverly Hills is an investment to the likes of buying gold.”

Rabbani shared the listing with Joe Babajian, also of Rodeo Realty, and Hilton and Hyland’s Rayni and Branden Williams. Nina Moshkovich of Nelson Shelton Real Estate Era Powered represented the buyer.

Kovalchuk, 36, signed a three-year, $18.75-million contract with the Kings last summer, but lasted less than halfway through the deal before being waived by the team. The two-time all-star and Olympic gold medalist has since signed a one-year pact with the Montreal Canadiens.

Closing out the year


Michael Clifford, guitarist for pop-punk outfit 5 Seconds of Summer, had something extra to celebrate this New Year’s Eve. Records show he shelled out $2.025 million for an entertainer’s haven in Valley Village, with the sale closing on the final day of 2019.

Though the property covers less than half an acre, it somehow manages to cram in eight bedrooms, 10 bathrooms and a decked-out yard with fire pits, fountains, an outdoor kitchen, sunken conversation pit and sleek swimming pool and spa.

Two structures fill out the fenced grounds: a 2,400-square-foot main house and an 1,800-square-foot guesthouse. A whitewashed open floor plan anchors the main home; it combines a family room, dining area, office, chef’s kitchen and living room with an eye-catching wall of stacked stone.

A wall of glass lines the master bedroom, taking in views of the backyard and guesthouse on the other end of the property. Amenities fill the guesthouse floor plan. There’s an indoor-outdoor screening room, as well as a chic billiards room with gray hardwood floors.

Tucked at the very back of the lot is a Zen garden complete with walking paths, a grassy lawn and fire pit.


Federico Rolon of Compass held the listing. Keven Stirdivant of Kase Real Estate represented the buyer.

Clifford formed 5 Seconds of Summer in Sydney, Australia, with Luke Hemmings, Calum Hood and Ashton Irwin in 2011. Between three studio albums, their hits include “Youngblood,” “Easier” and “Teeth.”

Former magical kingdom for lease

In the Hollywood Hills, the longtime home of Disney animator Art Babbitt and his late wife, actress-singer-dancer Barbara Perry, has come up for lease at $6,500 a month.

Tucked away in the Outpost Estates neighborhood, the restored Spanish-style house puts forth a sunny disposition with a blond facade and sunburst orange accents. Inside, colorful tile risers line a staircase leading upstairs.

A beamed-ceiling great room with a fireplace and an adjacent bar is at the heart of the 1920s house. Also within 2,083 square feet of space are a period kitchen, three bedrooms and two bathrooms. An upstairs sunroom/yoga studio takes in tree-top and city views.


French doors in the great room open directly to a tiled patio for outdoor entertaining. A two-car garage sits off the front.

Babbitt, who died in 1992 at 84, was one of Walt Disney’s earliest animators and the developer of the Goofy cartoon character. His other works included the first animation of Donald Duck in “The Wise Little Hen” and Geppetto the wood-carver in “Pinocchio” (1940). He also created the famous dancing mushroom scene in “Fantasia.”

Perry, who died last year at 97, was a renowned tap dancer early in her career, headlining at such nightclubs as Chez Paree in Chicago and Cocoanut Grove in L.A. As an actress, she appeared on episodes of “The Dick Van Dyke Show” and “The Andy Griffith Show.” More recently, she had roles on the comedies “How I Met Your Mother” and “Baskets.”

Stephanie Mora of Sotheby’s International Realty holds the listing.