(Hilton & Hyland)
(Hilton & Hyland)
The recent nine-figure sale of the Manor in Holmby Hills has pushed the L.A. County price record further into the stratosphere, but it’s just the latest eye-popping number for a high-end market that has seen its fair share of mega-deals through the years. Here’s a look at L.A.’s most expensive sales historically.
A new top dog
Formula One heiress Petra Ecclestone and a mystery buyer made history this month with the record $119.75-million sale of the Manor in Holmby Hills.
Dubbed Candyland for former owner Candy Spelling, widow of producer Aaron Spelling, the sprawling residence measures 56,500 square feet, or about 1,500 square feet larger than the White House, with 14 bedrooms and 27 bathrooms.
The mansion has more than 120 rooms that were customized for specific purposes during the Spellings ownership. Among them were a flower-cutting room, a humidity-controlled silver storage room, a barbershop and multiple gift-wrapping rooms.
A lounge/entry lined in black-striped marble, a large aquarium in the study and a nightclub makeover in the basement level are among additions introduced by Ecclestone. What was once a room specifically used for Candy Spelling’s doll collecting was converted into a hair salon and massage parlor.
Between a rock and a good offer
Hard Rock Cafe co-founder Peter Morton in 2018 sold his oceanfront home on Pacific Coast Highway to natural-gas billionaire Michael S. Smith and his wife, Iris Smith, for $110 million.
A desirable half-acre lot on Billionaires’ Beach is the main draw of the estate, which comprises two structures and has 100 feet of beach frontage.
Designed by architect Richard Meier, the main house and guesthouse feature teak wood siding, automated shutters and windows and wraparound balconies that face the ocean. The two homes combine for about 8,000 square feet of living space with seven bedrooms and nine bathrooms.
The grounds include a swimming pool and courtyard.
Making a play for the Playboy Mansion
In 2016, Los Angeles was center stage to one of the bigger real estate circuses in recent memory. The listing of the Playboy Mansion in Holmby Hills attracted rumored interest from a cast of characters that included Hustler publisher Larry Flynt, Beacher’s Madhouse creator Jeff Beacher and even actor Charlie Sheen.
Ultimately, it was Daren Metropoulos, the son of billionaire investor C. Dean Metropoulos and principal at the investment firm Metropoulos & Co., who made real estate history with a $100-million purchase.
The longtime home and workspace of Hugh Hefner was designed by Arthur R. Kelly in the Gothic Tudor style and completed in 1927. The 29-room house includes chef’s and catering kitchens, a game room and a screening room with a built-in pipe organ. Twelve bedrooms lie within 20,000 square feet of living space; the master suite spans two floors.
Adding to its mystique, the estate is also among a select number of L.A. homes to have a zoo license. Albino peacocks and other animals are known to roam freely through the park-like grounds. Aviaries and arboretums hold a collection of exotic birds and monkeys.
Trading spaces, literally
In 2018, Platinum Equity founder and Detroit Pistons owner Tom Gores parlayed his own holdings to land a mega-mansion in another $100-million deal.
The complex transaction saw Gores trade a number of his own properties as opposed to financing or making an all-cash purchase. As part of the deal, he retained a stake in the other properties in the event that they are developed or sold.
What Gores acquired in the sales was a modern showplace of more than 30,000 square feet. Developed by Gala Asher and Ed Berman, the mansion sits on a lot where Barbra Streisand once had a home.
The property includes several guesthouses and has 10 bedrooms and 20 bathrooms. The master suite alone is more than 5,000 square feet — nearly twice the size of the average single-family home in the U.S.
Doling out a few million
In 2000, Dole Food Co. owner David Murdock and financier Gary Winnick cut a $94-million deal that would stand as the county price record for more than a decade.
The centerpiece of the transaction was Murdock’s $8.4-acre trophy estate known as Casa Encantada. Built in the 1930s for glass manufacturing heiress Hilda Boldt Weber, the property was later owned by Hilton Hotels founder Conrad Hilton for three decades starting in 1950.
The knoll-top property abuts several holes on the private Bel-Air Country Club and includes a swimming pool, a pool house and a tennis court. The 28,725 square feet of building space has seven bedrooms and 20 bathrooms, according to tax records.
A star-studded affair
Owlwood, once home to actor Tony Curtis and later singing duo Sonny and Cher, may move up the list after coming back on the market for $110 million. But for now, it sits on the roster at $90 million, the selling price in 2016 to a development group headed by former Woodbridge Luxury Homes chief Robert Shapiro.
The new listing comes after Shapiro was arrested earlier this year; he stands accused of bilking thousands of investors in a $1.3-billion Ponzi scheme that fueled his luxury lifestyle. Owlwood is among Woodbridge’s holdings that are being liquidated to pay back investors.
Located on about 10 acres, the residence centers on a 12,200-square-foot Italian Revival-style mansion that has nine bedrooms. Two guesthouses, a pair of gatehouses and a tennis court also are on the grounds.
In 2002, Ameriquest Capital Corp. founder Roland Arnall and his wife, Dawn, acquired the storied home along with two adjacent properties — the former homes of actress Jayne Mansfield and actress-swimmer Esther Williams — that were absorbed into the Owlwood estate.
Both the Mansfield and Williams residences were later razed, although the pool house and 70-foot-long swimming pool from Williams’ former home were retained.
Billionaire bidding war
Once believed to be L.A. County’s first $100-million home sale, the Fleur de Lys deal in 2014 actually priced the property at $88.3 million. The disparity, revealed a few months after an initial flurry of publicity, can be attributed to the priceless art and antique furnishings negotiated outside of the closing price.
No less than three billionaires engaged in a bidding war to secure the five-acre trophy property, with the all-cash deal closing in 10 days.
The seller, socialite Suzanne Saperstein, built the 50,000-square-foot residence with her then-husband, Metro Networks founder David Saperstein. Built in 2002, the estate was inspired by Vaux-le-Victome, a palace outside of Paris, and features gold-leaf paneled ceilings, imported limestone blocks and a ballroom with space for 500.
The 4.6 acres of grounds include two motor courts, a swimming pool and spa complex and a tennis court.
Jay and Bey come home
After flirting with numerous L.A. properties for years, hip-hop power couple Jay-Z and Beyoncé finally made a splash in the market in 2017, paying $88 million for a modern mansion built on speculation.
Hidden behind walls and gates, the monolithic showplace is a superstar in its own right with six structures combining to offer about 30,000 square feet of interior space. Features include a spa and wellness facility, a media room and four outdoor swimming pools. The home’s pocketing glass doors and windows are lined with bulletproof glass.
Also within the approximately two-acre compound is a full basketball court and separate staff quarters. There is garage space for 15 vehicles as well as a motor court and an area for staff parking.