Jeff Bezos’ deal for Paul Allen’s undeveloped land falls through

Amazon founder Jeff Bezos' purchase of a development site in Beverly Crest has fallen through. The 120-acre site, owned by the estate of late Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen, remains for sale at $110 million.
(David Ryder / Getty Images)

Apparently even the world’s richest man gets cold feet. Amazon founder Jeff Bezos has pulled out of a deal to purchase the “Enchanted Hill,” a prized Beverly Crest development site, from the estate of late Microsoft Corp. co-founder Paul Allen, according to real estate sources not authorized to comment publicly on the deal.

The Wall Street Journal reported in February that Bezos bought the property through an umbrella company for $90 million, citing an unnamed source who called the purchase “an investment.”

The undeveloped land is currently for sale at $110 million, according to an active listing for the property. Jeff Hyland, Rick Hilton, Jesse Lally and Zach Goldsmith, all with Hilton & Hyland, are the agents on record and declined to comment.


Among the largest remaining undeveloped sites in Beverly Crest, the sprawling hilltop comprises five flat lots totaling 120 acres.

The property was once the estate of cowboy actor Fred Thomson and his Oscar-winning screenwriter wife, Frances Marion, who had a Wallace Neff-designed home built on the site. The couple’s neighbor at the time, actress Greta Garbo, coined the name “Enchanted Hill.”

Allen, who died two years ago at 65, purchased the property in 1997 for $20 million with intentions to develop the property as his personal compound. During his ownership, the house was razed and a one-mile private street was added. Utilities and two guard-gated entrances were also installed.

Bezos, 56, previously lit the real estate world ablaze earlier this year with the $165-million purchase of David Geffen’s Beverly Hills estate. The Georgian-style mansion, once owned by movie mogul Jack Warner, sits on nine acres with multiple structures, formal gardens and a private golf course. Elsewhere on the grounds are a pool and a tennis court.

The multibillionaire also owns other homes in Beverly Hills as well as Seattle, Texas and Washington, D.C. A year ago, he reportedly paid about $80 million for a trio of adjoining apartments in New York City. The 2019 Land Report, which identifies the country’s 100 largest landowners, ranked him 25th.