Wednesday, December 30, 2009

UPDATE: Randolph Duke

Back in December of 2008, red carpet dress dee-ziner and HSN habiliment hawker Randoph Duke listed his cantilevered and aggressively cuspidated Los Angeles house with a searing asking price of $8,250,000. Later, in June of 2009, Miss Duke slashed the price tag of the 3 bedroom and 3.5 pooper property to $6,500,000.

It was shortly after that that Your Mama schlepped our fat ass through and around the 3 bedroom and 3.5 pooper XTEN Architecture designed house in the Hollywood Hills. Here's what we recall from our visit: The street on which the contemporary crib is located–anorexically narrow Fareholm Drive–offers residents undeniably spectacular views but cosmetically it's not a very attractive or particularly upscale appearing street despite its most famous fat livin' inhabitant, attention craving Kanye West who resides in a multi-floor modern a few curves down the street.

We also recall the angular residence had a driveway far to small to turn a car around–although one just wide enough for someone to back out a gleaming, white Rolls Royce Phantom, that most of the glass walls slid open making for a truly seamless integration of the interior spaces with the exterior terraces, patios, swimming pool and spa and that the master bedroom, despite its lack of an actual door for privacy, is a Sybarite's paradise with huge views, a fireplace for romantical evenings, plenty of storage for an entire wardrobe of his SPIRITED line of ladees duds, a large bathroom and several private terraces including one tucked up behind the house that connects to the outdoor dining room located off one end of the living room.

Anyhoo, thanks to Emily Emailer and confirmed with property records, Your Mama can tell you that Miss Duke finally sold the house in early December 2009 for–drum roll please–$5,300,000. Now chickens, five and some million bucks is a lot of damn dollars but a few flicks of the well worn beads on our bejeweled abacus reveals that it's also just 64% of the original asking price. We're certain Miss Duke and all his accountants and real estate people are thrilled the house sold, but surely it stings just a little to get so much less than was desired.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Steve Booshehmee Lists Sunset Strip House

SELLER: Steve Buscemi
LOCATION: Los Angeles, CA
PRICE: $6,250,000
SIZE: 3 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms
DESCRIPTION: Sited on one of the premier promontories above the Sunset Strip, this European Architectural feels as if it floats among the stars. All major room overlook a dramatic pool and grassy lawn to an unbroken, unobstructed sweep of view across the Los Angeles basin to the Pacific Ocean. The just completed renovation and expansion have created a remarkable two-story residence which combines contemporary luxury with a respect for the details of a distinguished origin.

YOUR MAMAS NOTES: While Your Mama was sipping gin spiked egg nog with the Dr. Cooter's family we received a missive from Big Dave over at Celebrity Address Aerial who let us know that snaggle-toothed actor/director Steve Buscemi–that's pronounced boo-SHEM-ee–listed a house high above Los Angeles' Sunset Strip with a sky high asking price of $6,250,000.

Mister Buscemi, well known for playing creeps and criminals on screen (The Sopranos, Miller's Crossing, Fargo, The Big Lebowski) also has a handful of nice credits on his IMDB for directing multiple episodes of Oz, The Sopranos, 30 Rock and, most recently, 4 episodes of the wicked and wonderful Nurse Jackie on the HBO.

Anyhoo, property records are a wee bit confusing on this one to Your Mama's holiday hacked and gin saturated mind, but as best as we can tell Mister Buscemi–a dead ringer for John Waters in a dark alley–bought the property in July 0f 2006 for an undisclosed amount of money. It could also be that he's owned the property since sometime in the 1990s. We don't know. The property consists of at least three–and possibly four–adjacent parcels sited on a small but significant promontory allowing for knee buckling views of the glittery lights of Tinseltown from downtown to the Pacific Ocean.

Property records show the recently rehabbed residence was originally built in 1942 and measures 1,956 square feet with 2 bedrooms and 2 poopers. However, listing information indicates the "European Architectural" includes 3 bedrooms and 3 poopers. Your Mama does can't say with certainty why the discrepancy, but we suspect it might have something to do with the recent renovation and expansion mentioned in listing information.

Sitting at the very tip of a hair pin curve on a cul-de-sac off dizzingly swervy Sunset Plaza Drive and fronted by an itty-bitty motor court and 2-car garage, the little-windowed front facade gives few clues to the exploding views that slap you in the damn face at the back of the house which is all floor to ceiling sliding glass doors that open to the back yard.

Listing photos don't reveal much of the interior spaces but, let's be honestly children, whomever buys Mister Booshehmee's Sunset Strip property at whatever price it eventually sells for probably will care little about the interior spaces with it's polished and reddish wood floors, 2 fireplaces and oddly configured but well appointed kitchen. For better or worse and like it or not, in Los Angeles, a house like this is all about that glittering carpet of lights and the small but flat back yard with its infinity edged plunge pool, spa, fire pit and patch of grass just big enough for a couple long bodied bitches.

From the looks of things, Your Mama would guess–and hope–that Mister Booshehmee and family have already moved on to bigger and better digs since there appears to be little in the way of day-core other than a couple of Barcelona chairs, a surfboard shaped glass dining room table with six white chairs and a trio of stainless steel stools pulled up to the breakfast counter in the kitchen. Besides, that orchid sitting on the coffee table in the living room is a dead damn ringer that this place is staged. Or at least, that's what Your Mama thinks.

Property records also indicate that Mister Buscemi owns a 2 bedroom and 2 pooper condo in a tawdry complex on the western side of Las Vegas that was purchased in October of 2006 for $200,000 as well as a house sitting on just more than an acre not too far from posh Park City, UT in the unfortunately named Heber City. It also appears, according to property records, that Mister Buscemi also owns house in the Park Slope neighborhood of his native Brooklyn, NY. which was purchased way back in June of 1997 for $579,000. But honestly butter beans, we're not sure of these things.

Monday, December 28, 2009

The Widda Safra's Real Estate Madness

Listen chickens, today is a travel day for Your Mama so we just don't have too much time to blather on like we usually do so in an effort not to leave y'all completely high and dry real estate wise we're going to drop a tidbit about some recent real estate activity at New York City's high-fallutin' 820 Fifth Avenue, without question one of Manhattan's most exclusive and coveted co-operative apartment houses and also one of the most difficult to get into.

International socialite Lily Safra, the widow of deceased Lebonese billionaire Edmond Safra who perished in a nasty conflagration that swept through the couple's penthouse in Monaco back in 1999, has long occupied the top floor of the ridiculously high-nosed 820 Fifth Avenue. She also, according to several of our better connected New York City sources, owns the smaller of the two maisonette units at 820. Your Mama doesn't know what she uses that apartment for so don't nobody bother asking. If we knew, we'd certainly tell you.

Anyhoo, the long elevator ride to the 12 floor must have gotten a bit annoying for the Widda Safra–or something–because on the 16th of December, according to the peeps at Property Shark, the kohl eyed and wildy rich woman snatched up the 4th floor of 820 Fifth Avenue for a toe curling $33,000,000 and, in turn, sold her 12th floor sprawler to hedge fund honcho Ken Griffin for an even more hair raising $40,000,000. Billionaires clearly weather recessions far differently than Your Mama and the Dr. Cooter do.

This is not–it might flabbergast the children to know–the first time the Widda Safra has owned the 4th floor of 820 Fifth Avenue. In the early naughts, the Widda Safra reportedly paid khaki pants king Tommy Hilfiger somewhere in the neighborhood of $18,000,000 for the full floor unit. As the story goes–and Your Mama has no idea if the story is really true–the Widda Safra purchased the palatial apartment for one of her two daughters who quickly had a real estate change of mind and decided she didn't want to live downstairs from mumsey after all. The apartment was flipped back on the market and eventually sold in 2003 for around $23,500,000, a tidy profit by any standard. The buyers: home builder Ara Hovnanian and his ar-teest wifey Rachel.

The Hovnanians had the 4th floor unit all did up and done over by dee-voon Dutch architect Piet Boon who worked over the 18-room beast into a minimalist vision in white, black and blue with elaborate and intricate moldings painted the same glaring white as the winter white walls, all the better to display their impressive collection of Hirsts and Matisses. Back in the early spring of 2008, the Hovnanians floated their very contemporary apartment on the market as a quiet listing–meaning it wasn't officially for sale, but for those with the right connections and the right number dollars in their bank accounts was indeed for sale–with an asking price widely reported to be a blistering $36,000,000.

The Hovnanians were, natch, no fools when the Widda Safra–the very same ladee who sold them their apartment–made it known she'd be willing to pay $33,000,000 to buy the apartment...again. They wisely saw a gift horse knocking on their finely feathered nest who not only has pockets deep enough to pay thirty-some million for the apartment, but also a gift horse with the necessary clout–not to mention a couple of current addys at 820 already–to pass muster with the notoriously stringent co-op board.

Your Mama hasn't any idea if Miz Safra plans on keeping all the gallery white walls and ultra-modern bathroom fixtures, but iffin she were to ask Your Mama, which of course she will not, we'd tell her she'd be a loon to trade out anything installed by the magnificent Mister Boon.

The Widda Safra is, all the children well know by now, currently entangled in an ugly legal imbroglio with Russian oligarch Mikail Prokhorov over the fifty-five million (or so) clams the billionaire gave the billionairess as a deposit on the purchase of her legendary estate La Leopolda in the South of France. In short, he backed out of the deal and wants his deposit back and she claims he's not entitled to its return according to French law. Their attorneys are duking it out in court and a ruling of the mess is expected in March of 2010.

photo: Property Shark

Thursday, December 24, 2009


Your Mama and the Dr. Cooter wish all the children the happiest of holidays and an even happier New Year filled with health, wealth and a bottomless pitcher of gin & tonics.

Taylor Swift Buys Big Girl Penthouse in Nashville

BUYER: Taylor Swift
LOCATION: Nashville, TN
PRICE: $1,990,000
SIZE: 4,062 square feet, 3 bedrooms, 4.5 bathrooms

YOUR MAMAS NOTES: Iffin Your Mama is being honest–and we always are–we'd tell the children that the only bits and pieces we know about 20-year old country music sensation Taylor Swift is that purity ring wearing tweener singer Joe Jonas broke up with her over the telephone sometime in 2008 and that her moment to shine at the 2009 MTV Video Music Awards was tarnished when she was accepting the Best Female Video award and a seemingly intoxicated Kanye West–he was, after all, clutching a half empty bottle of Hennessey while walking the red carpet earlier in the evening–clamored up on the stage looking like a damn fool with his ridiculous haircut and blathering on about beautiful and big booty-ed Beyoncé's Single Ladies video. Beyoncé looked mor-ti-fide, Kanye was asked to leave and, later, a very dignified Miss Swift very graciously accepted his apology. Lo-werd have mercy children, it's a good thing Kanye West didn't rain on our damn parade because Your Mama would not have been nearly as nice as Miss Swift. We'd have told Mister West to go, ahem, screw hisself and then smacked his ass clear back to the Middle Ages because we are not nearly as forgiving as young Miss Swift is when it comes to public displays of jack-assery.

Anyhoo, thanks to the gender neutrally named Robin Black down in Music City, we've also recently learned that the 20-year old singer/songwriter just bought her first home. A few minutes clicking and clacking through the interweb turns up multiple reports about young Miss Swift snatching up a dee-luxe penthouse condo at The Adelicia complex in downtown Nashville.

According to our Robin Black who forwarded property records supporting his claim, Miss Swift forked over a very grown up $1,990,000 for her new bachelorette pad. According to The Adelicia's website, little Miss Swift's penthouse measures an adult-sized 4,063 square feet and includes 3 bedrooms and 4.5 poopers. Miss Swift's new home also has a double height living room wrapped in floor to ceiling glass and divided into two seating areas by a huge freestanding fireplace, a wrap around balcony, gore-may kitchen, dining room and an 80+ square foot wine storage room, which is kind of ironic if not particularly funny since Miss Swift is not old even enough to drink legally. Two of Miss Swift's three bedrooms are on the main floor while the upper floor includes a study overlooking the living room, an entertainment room, laundry facilities, and a master bedroom with twin vanities, a glassy bathroom with separate tub and shower and a walk in closet larger than many studio apartments in Manhattan.

According to one report, Miss Swift is all kinds of excited about shopping for tile and wallpaper and taking off her cowgirl boots and putting on her interior decorator hat. She reveals her plans to do over the day-core in a, "whimsical, quirky, eclectic tree house" style. Oh dear. Listen to Your Mama here Miss Swift, because we like you and we want to help you from creating a decorating disaster of epic proportions. Do not, and we repeat, do not do up your penthouse like a damn tree house. Not only will you get tired of that crap in six months or a year, no one will ever want to buy it when you decide to sell it because, let's be honest hunny, there really aren't that many–if any–people who will ever be the market for a multi-million dollar penthouse in Nashville done up and worked over like a damn tree house. Okay?

The 18-story mixed use tower offers residents all the luxuries and conveniences a fancy, modern day apartment tower should, including a 3,000 square foot gym with a yoga/Pilates room, a sprawling rooftop deck with Olympic length lap pool and a couple of community barbecue grills, a private pool-side lounge with catering kitchen for private soirees, private conference rooms, a resident's only dog park, and 24/7 concierge and security services.

Other buyers at The Adelicia are reported to include Dancing With the Stars dancer turned country music singer Julianne Hough, Kings of Leon lead singer Caleb Followill, and filthy rich American Idol founder Simon Fuller who, like Miss Swift, also selected a penthouse unit according to property records. Maybe the can all get together at the private pool-side lounge for a meet and greet barbecue soiree.

Your Mama congratulates Miss Swift on her success–it's not every 20-year old who can purchase a two million dollar anything–and sincerely wish her a happy home and a Kanye West free MTV Video Music Award ceremony in 2010.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Cher Hoists Hawaiian Hideaway Up on the Auction Block

LOCATION: Lau'eki Street, Kailua Kona, HI
PRICE: $8-12,000,000 (estimated)
SIZE: 8,821 square feet, 6 bedrooms, 6 full and 2 half bathrooms

YOUR MAMAS NOTES: Not only has iconic singer/songwriter/actor/director/producer Cher been trying to unload* her massive mansion in Malee-boo, CA for an ear piercing $45,000,000–now reduced to a still booty clenching $41,000,000–she's also recently put a never occupied Hawaiian hideaway up for auction with a pre-auction estimated selling price between eight and twelve million clams.

The recently completed residence sits on a .76-acre lot at the fancy Four Seasons Hualalai community on the Kona-Kohala Coast on the Big Island of Hawaii. Altogether, according to listing information, the compound covers 8,821 square feet of interior space with 6 bedrooms and 6 full and 2 half poopers.

The main house is entered through a courtyard and covered porch where floor-to-ceiling mahogany doors slide open to reveal a seamless integration between the well-appointed–if too neutral for Your Mama's taste–interior spaces and outdoor spaces which all have dazzling views across the 4th fairway and to the glittering blue ocean. In the event of inclement weather or a rare chill on the air, sliding glass doors close off the main living space, which includes a vaulted ceiling inlaid with grass thatching, several seating areas, art niches, and mahogany detailing.

The dining room, according to listing information, has sliding doors on all four sides that can either close or open the space to the living room, kitchen and outdoors. The adjacent kitchen features a large center island, high grade appliances including dual convection ovens, dual dishwashers, a built-in espresso maker, and a dual-climate wine refrigerator.

The master suite, located within the main house, includes an expansive bedroom with walls of glass that slide open to a private lanai with views of the pool, golf course and ocean. The master bath has been fitted with double vanity with a wood counter top, a free-standing soaking tub and a walk-in shower as well as an outdoor shower.

In addition to the main house, there are 5 free-standing bungalows–four with bedroom suites and a fifth designed as a media room and bar–that surround an Zen-like courtyard with streamlined landscaping, walking path and fountain.

The infinity-edged swimming pool and spa has several lounging areas including a nearby lanai and a shallow shelf in the pool itself on which several chaise lounges eagerly beckon for Your Mama's big booty, Cher's surgically enhanced and unnaturally wrinkle-free face and a big ol' pitcher of gin & tonics. The backside of the swimming pool has a few palm trees for that island feel and a tumble of razor sharp volcanic rocks, which will cut a persons feet to bloody shreds if they make the damn fool effort to scramble across them bare footed.

The property is scheduled to be auctioned on the 18th of January so any of you children who might have a 10 or so million to spare and would like to own a Hawaiian hideaway custom-designed by Cher herself have a few weeks to get your financial affairs in order.

*The Malee-boo manse is not currently on the open market.

photos: Concierge Auctions

British Jokester Russell Brand Goes Hollywood

BUYER: Russell Brand (and Katy Perry)
LOCATION: Los Angeles, CA
PRICE: $3,250,000
SIZE: 4,706 square feet, 4 bedrooms, 4.5 bathrooms
DESCRIPTION: Walled and gated, this stately home has been renovated and updated with style and flair. Wood floors, marble surfaces, and floor plan. The living room is large and bright, with den, formal dining room, a large chef's kitchen with family room, and 4 bedrooms/4.5 baths. The master bedroom is over sized and has unusually high ceilings and city views. The grounds are expansive, with rolling lawns, formal gardens, pool and spa, with a gated entry and driveway.

YOUR MAMAS NOTES: Okay chickens, Your Mama is going to try and clear up a little matter about the Los Angeles house controversial British comedian Russell Perry bought where he and girl kissing singer/songwriter Katy Perry will, allegedly, live in sin because we're hearing something very different that what has been widely reported.

Your Mama has received numerous emails the last few days from the children wanting to know if the international reports about Mister Brand buying Britney Spears' old house up in the Summit community above Beverly Hills, which–the poor lamb–has been unsuccessfully trying to unload for years.

We're not sure quite how that real estate rumor got started but, based on the very good word of Phoebe Fillsyourmamainonallthingslosfeliz, we can tell you that Mister Brand and Miss Perry did not only not purchase the former home of back in the superstar saddle Miss Spears', they didn't even buy a mansion in the guard gated Summit community at all. No babies, according to our well informed sources, Mister Brand bought a house in the Los Feliz area of Los Angeles, a far cry from the not quite Beverly Hills Summit community.

Property records show the 4 bedroom and 4.5 pooper property was picked up for $3,250,000, which is only an itty bit higher than the $3,200,000 the tax man's records show the seller–award winning music video director Mark Romanek and his wife Brigette–paid for the house back in May of 2006.

Situated on a corner lot above lovely Los Feliz Boulevard, the residence stands four stories tall and measures, according to property records, 4,706 square feet. The walled, gated and highly hedged property can be accessed via a walk gate at the front of the house or an electronic drive gate at the side the leads around to a motor court and three car garage.

According to property records, the residence was built in 1922 but has subsequently been fully updated and renovated with modern standards and a contemporary aspect. The white-walled rooms have dark chocolate wood floors, marble counter tops, and numerous French doors that open to multiple awning covered terraces and balconies with views of downtown and beyond.

The formal entry opens to a large, square-ish, step down livng room with fireplace. The corner living room opens to a small den/library as well as the dining room with a trio of arched windows, a crystal dripping chandelier and a shimmering, blue and silver wallpaper applied to one wall. The gore-may, eat in kitchen has white cabinetry with glass fronted uppers, marble counter tops, a large work island with breakfast bar, lots of windows for lights and all the high end cooking accoutrement one can and should expect in a three and some million dollar house.

Upstairs, antique carved wood double doors open to the rather large master bedroom, which has high ceilings, a fireplace, city views and enough multi-paned French door to make a cleaning gurl hate you. The master bath has industrial feeling, dark gray concrete floors set off by luxe amenities like a double vanity, spa tub and separate shower. At the time of the sale, one of the other three bedrooms was finished with a stunning stenciled and gold leafed ceiling which is the perfect decorative accent to some of Miss Perry's rather inventive and colorful 1940s inspired outfits.

The terraced grounds have flat lawns, stone balustrades, fountains, swimming pool, spa and several terraces for outdoor entertaining and early afternoon cocktailing.
In addition to buying a big house in Los Angeles, Mister Brand has also, it has been widely reported, listed his glamorous and dramatically decorated and excessively wallpapered, 5-floor London terrace house (shown above) in November of 2009. Listing information shows Mister Brand's London house has a double reception room on the first floor, 3-4 bedrooms, 3.5 bathrooms–one of which Mister Brand uses as an office/study and another as a yoga room, and a hot tub in the wee back yard. The property is currently listed at £2,500,000, which becomes a much more substantial sounding 4,006,080 U.S. dollars at today's rates according to Your Mama's currency converting contraption.

As for Miss Spears, well puppies, as fer as Your Mama knows, when she's not strutting her stuff while on tour she's hunkered down in a huge leased house in a double gated community in Calabasas, CA. Her former 6 bedroom and 6.5 pooper faux-Tuscan white elephant in the Summit community that Mister Brand was erroneously reported to have purchased does not appear to be currently listed on the open market nor, according to property records, does it appear to have been sold.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

More Legal Wrangling Over La Leopolda

International socialite Lily Safra did not want to sell La Leopolda, her lavish and legendarily high-maintenance 20ish acre estate in the South of France. Back in late November of 2009, Your Mama heard from Miz Safra's man in Paris who told us, "A purchase proposal was spontaneously–and repeatedly–made by one potential buyer and was finally accepted last year. However, the purchase was never completed. The residence is not being sold and was never offered for sale." Our little pea brain translates that to: Miz Safra was not–and is still not–seeking a buyer for La Leopolda, but, let's be honest chickens, when someone offers you half a billion bucks for a house, you say yes.

The "potential buyer" was Russian billionaire Mikhail Prokhorov who provided Miz Safra a reported £35,000,000 down payment for the purchase of La Leopolda. It is this titanic deposit that has Miz Safra and Mister Prokhorov duking it out in the French courts.

According to a recent report in the Telegraph, Mister Prokhorov's legal people told a court in Nice that in August of 2008 a promesse de vente–that's a sale agreement to all us English speakers–was signed by Mister Prokhorov signaling his intent to purchase the Belle Epoque mansion. The agreed upon price, according to the Telegraph, was a jaw dropping and record breaking £347,000,000, a number that included £17,400,000 for the furnishings.

According to Your Mama's currency converting contraption, those figures translate at today's rates to $50,139, 200 for the deposit, $24,926,400 for the furniture and a total purchase price of $497,095,000. For the sake of simplicity, let's just say that based on the reported numbers, Miz Safra agreed to sell La Leopolda for approximately $475,000,000, the furnishings for an additional twenty-five million clams all of which was secured with a fifty million smacker deposit.

The big deal was to go down in January of 2009 but apparently Mister Prokhorov, who is by some accounts Russia's richest man, got a serious case of the real estate cold feet and decided not to complete the high-priced purchase. He requested his deposit be returned. She said, "nyet," then issued a public statement saying the ginormous deposit would be donated to various charities. She's rich like that. He cried foul. Then they went to court.

Miz Safra's legal people say that, according to French law, purchasers lose their deposit if they bail on the sale after the promesse de vente has been signed. Mister Prokhorov's legal peeps insist the promesse de vente became null and void due to two "anomalies." Their first argument states that Mister Prokhorov was not given a seven day "cooling off" period during which a buyer can typically back out of a sales agreement without penalty.

Their second legal beef is a claim that Miz Safra's legal proxy unlawfully included the agreed upon price for the furniture in with the price of the house making for an inaccurate reporting of the transaction figures to the French government.

Miz Safra's legal peeps said, in effect, "Pffft, that's silly" and then, somewhat curiously, demanded Mister Prokhorov compensate Miz Safra a whopping £1,300,000–or, at today's rates, $1,862,320 for all us Americanos–for the cost of "moving furniture." We'd bet our long bodied bitches Linda and Beverly that request didn't sit well with Mister Prokhorov or his legal team.

Miz Safra's legal representative, an homme by the name of Jean-Michel Darrios, claims to have an ace in their legal hole regarding this whole brouhaha and is quoted in the Telegraph, "We have written proof that Mr. Prokhorov, via his lawyers, continued to confirm his intention to by the property well after the sale agreement."

A verdict is due in March of 2010.

Monday, December 21, 2009

As an aside...

...First we lost the New York Post's inestimable celebrity real estate writer Braden Keil who died in early 2009 after a long battle with skin cancer and who was replaced by his wife Jennifer. Then we lost the mighty fine Max Abelson at the New York Observer who moved on to greener pastures at the pink paper and who was replaced by the lovely Chloe Malle. And now we read that (celebrity) real estate writer Josh Barbanel who penned the Big Deals column and other stories for the New York Times was laid off.

Laid off. Another sign of the economic times and yet another sign of the rather fragile state of newspapers and print media in general. We'll miss Mister Barbanel's insight into the glittery world of New York City real estate and will cross our fingers and toes he lands on his feet, soon and solidly.

UPDATE: Nic Cage

Oh dear. Your Mama regrets to report that it looks like it may not be a very merry real estate Christmas for the financially embattled and beleaguered Oscar winning actor Nic Cage. After weeks wasted in escrow, his legendary estate on Copa de Oro Road in Los Angeles' posh and pricey Bel Air neighborhood–formerly owned by Tom Jones and Dean Martin–is back on the market with an asking price of $17,500,000.

A Bev Hills real estate insider we'll call Little Birdie whispered in our ear that the house has actually been in escrow a couple of times and that we should not be surprised if it goes into escrow again very, very soon.

photo: Pacific Coast News

George Lindeman Junior Lists Art Filled Mansion in Miami

SELLER: George Lindemann Jr.
LOCATION: Sunset Island, Miami Beach, FL
PRICE: $29,900,750
SIZE: 11,388 square feet, 7 bedrooms, 7.5 bathrooms
DESCRIPTION: This historically significant waterfront property designed by Maurice Fatio encompasses 70,886 SF of land on which rests approx 11,388 SF breathtaking, Neoclassic home w/ a contemporary feel. The home sits on a tip lot on Sunset Island. From there, sweeping bay views & color-soaked sunsets provide a dazzling backdrop to this crown jewel, aptly named, La Tranquilla. An Olympic-sized pool blends effortlessly into the verdant & well-manicured surroundings of this tropical haven spanning 1.63 acres.

YOUR MAMAS NOTES: Your Mama suggests the children get right up, grab a nice big cup of coffee, spike it with whatever makes yer head spin and settle in for the long haul because we won't be getting to the meat of this real estate matter for quite some time.

George Lindemann, Sr., one of the United States' wealthier citizens, made tens of millions developing the first permanent-wear soft contact lens and later made well over a billion bucks selling a nascent cellular technology concern to the Bell Atlantic Corporation. Currently, Mister Lindemann is chairman of the board, president and CEO of the Southern Union Company, the largest natural gas pipeline company in the United States. Mister Lindemann is said to own as much as 10% of that company and, additionally, a significant stake in Verizon and a whole mess of Spanish language radio stations too. The Lindemanns, George Senior and his wife Dr. Frayda Lindemann, are major philanthropists, patrons of the arts and regulars on the upper crust party and charity circuit in New York, Palm Beach and beyond. Together they have three adult children: Adam, Sloan and George Jr.

Now that we know who the primary players are in our little game of real estate what's what, we're going to present an admittedly incomplete run down of the very fancy residential real estate holdings and transactions of the Lindemann family because, let's be honest, it's always fun and exciting to whittle away an hour or two looking at and marveling over how wildly, filthy, stinking rich people live.

George Senior and Dr. Frayda, who happen to be besties with fallen financier Walter Noel and his well kept wife Monica, famously sold their ocean front mansion on Blossom Way in Palm Beach in June of 2008 for a heart stopping $68,500,000. The buyer is widely reported to be Venezuelan big living banker and polo pasha Victor Vargas. The elder Lindemanns, who are based in Greenwich, CT, decamped to a smaller but still huge ocean front mansion father north in Palm Beach, which they bought in September of 2008 for $23,500,000 and hired high class architect Peter Marino to work over.

In 1986, according to property records, Mister and Missus Dr. Lindemann purchased a townhouse on swank but staid Sutton Place in New York City that once was owned by Aristotle Onassis. They sold the house a few years later for $8,375,000 and, unfortunately, Your Mama loses all track of their New York City real estate trail right then and there. However, Your Mama is hard pressed to believed these two luxe-livers haven't since bought themselves a pricey and posh apartment in one of the better buildings on Park or Fifth Avenue.

Anyhoo, since at least mid 1980s, according to property records, the Lindemann family seat has been a 9+ acre water front estate on Indian Field Road in Greenwich, CT. In addition a waterside swimming pool, tennis court, private beach, guest house and acres of lush landscaping, there is, according to property records, a very dignified 12,639 square foot, 12 bedroom Tudor-style mansion that would make a robber baron weep. As best as we can tell from peeping and poking around property records, the stately estate is now in the name of Sloan Lindemann, however we're pretty sure it's still occupied by the elder Lindemanns. Anyone? Bueller? Bueller?

Speaking of Sloan...In the late 1990s, she and her investment banker/natural health-care and housecleaning products pushing huzband Roger Barnett lived in Manhattan at 550 Park Avenue in a 4,500 sq. ft. sprawler with 12 rooms. In late 2000, they traded up to a 33-foot wide, 5-floor Georgian style mansion on East 69th Street that records show they picked up for $11,050,000. At the time Mister and Missus Barnett bought the townhouse, according to a report from the time, the 1881 structure had a marble foyer, library, a full width living room, a dining room with 14 foot ceilings, two single bedrooms and three two-bedroom suites that shared 5 poopers and, natch, staff quarters. There were–and perhaps still are–separate passenger and staff elevators because, apparently, people with more money than the damn Pope don't always like sharing elevators with the help. Our research turned up multiple reports that stated the interiors were done up and did over by architect Peter Marino who–as we mentioned earlier–has had a hand in several homes of Sloan's folks. Back in mid-2007 there were rumors running around the upper crust real estate circles that Mister and Missus Barnett were quietly shopping their townhouse around for somewhere in the neighborhood of $62,000,000. It was rumored (and reported) that Mister and Missus Barnett had previously received one offer in the mid-fifty million clam range, but they didn't go for it. Silly rabbits.

In early 2005, after selling their ocean front weekend house at the bottom of Squabble Lane in Southampton, NY to pet product tycoon Leonard Stern for $20,000,000, the Sloan and Roger Barnetts packed up and headed west where they bought a massive mansion in San Francisco from Ingrid and Reuben Hills of the Hills Brothers coffee fortune. According to previous reports and property records, the 1931 built manse, situated on a particularly peacocky block of nabobish Broadway Street, measures 11,455 square feet and includes 9 bedrooms, 9 or more poopers, a central courtyard and panoramic views encompassing the Golden Gate Bridge and Alcatraz Island. The purchase price is unknown but the hoity-toity house was last listed at a staggering $29,500,000. It had been listed, the children might get a kick out of knowing, as high as $45,000,000. To give the children a feel for the sort of west coast neighborhood the east coast Barnetts landed, their nearby neighbors include billionaire Larry Ellison, oil rich socialites Ann and Gordon Getty, Levi Strauss heir Peter Haas, and dashing writer and tech entrepreneur Trevor Traina–whose father was once married to prolific romance writer Danielle Steel–and his stunning wife Alexis. As best as Your Mama can tell from property records and previous reports, the Barnetts live primarily at their San Francisco mansion but continue to maintain their Manhattan townhouse, but don't nobody quote us on that because we really don't know nuthin' from a nutcracker.

Sloan's brother Adam Lindemann, a heavy hitting New York City-based contemporary art collector, used to live in a 10th floor spread at 730 Park Avenue when he was married to his first wife, socialite Elizabeth Graham. That is, until they went splitsville in the early naughts. The formerly happy couple also owned a 4.62 acre, 5 bedroom and 4 pooper property on North Street in Greenwich, CT they sold in September of 2001 for $3,583,000 as well as another house on Fords Lane in quietly ritzy Rye, NY that was sold in October of 2002 for $10,500,000. Ex-Missus Lindemann sold the 5 bedroom and 5.5 pooper co-operative apartment at 730 Park Avenue post-dee-vorce, in June 2006, for $21,500,000 and moved her things just one floor down into an 11-room bacherlorette pad at 730 she bought in August of 2006 for $10,500,000.

In 2006, Mister Lindemann remarried former gallerist Amalia Dayan, who herself has a rather impressive family pedigree. For a time they lived in an art-filled apartment at the Time Warner Center surrounded by high priced and high profile pieces by big fish artists like Jack Pierson, Glenn Brown, Damien Hirst, and Jeff Koons. One of the bedrooms in the high-floor condo, shared by two of Mister Lindemann's three daughters from his first marriage, was wrapped in wallpaper by Japanese super star Takashi Murakami. The art consuming couple have traded that apartment in–or soon will be–for a David Adjaye designed carriage house on East 77th Street that record show Mister Lindemann bought in May of 2004 for $6,750,000. On weekends, Mister and second Missus Lindemann either head up to the Catskills where they own a mock-Tudor done over with the assistance of artist Richard Woods–which means it's probably an extravaganza of faux bois–or they head out east to Montauk where property records show that in December of 2007 Mister Lindemann spent $15,000,000 on a 3.31 acre bluff top and ocean front property with a sizable shingled cottage built in the 1970s, which they also had David Adjaye do over.

Now then, let's get to the man of the hour, George Lindemann Jr., whose unfortunate claim to fame is that in the late 1990s he did some time in the pokey after he was convicted of insurance fraud related to hiring some thug to electrocute one of his show horses in order to collect a quarter of a million clams in insurance money. After being sprung from the big house, Mister Lindemann re-created himself from a horseman into a philanthropist and voracious contemporary art collector based in Miami, FL. Thanks to Mimi MiamiBeach we've learned that the former felon has put his historic, art-filled Miami Beach mansion on the market with a toe curling $29,900,750 asking price. If that number doesn't cause the children to bust out in a case of hives, maybe the bank account draining $210,269 in annual taxes and $15,000 per year homeowner association fees will.

Public property records on George Junior's Sunset Island estate are a wee bit confusing and convoluted, as they often can be when dealing with billionaire families who have co-mingling financial interests in family businesses and trusts. According to one of our interweb sources, George Junior purchased the property through a trust in June of 2000 for $8,425,000. In 2004, the property was transferred from the trust directly to George Jr. and his mother Dr. Frayda. At some point between 2004 and 2008, George Senior and sister Sloan were added on the records and in early 2008 the property was again transferred from that group of Lindemanns directly to an eponymous trust controlled by George Junior.

Listing information shows the simply but meticulously manicured 1.63 acre lot claims 453 feet of water front and hosts a 1936 Neoclassical beauty designed by famed high society architect Maurice Fatio. According to listing information, the sprawling single story concrete block stucco residence, called La Tranquilla, measures 11,388 square feet with 7 bedrooms and 7.5 poopers. At the front, an electronic gate opens to a large circular drive. The driveway leads around one side of the house to a small motor court and 3-car garage and on the other side, a path from the driveway leads around the house to the water where there is private dockage. A vast, piazza like patio stretches between the two wings at the back of the house and a rectangular, Olympic length swimming pool and spa extends from the back of the house towards the water.

The "W" shaped concrete stucco built residence retains its original character on the exterior and every convenience and modern amenity has been added to the beautifully proportioned interior. However, as lovely as the house may be, it's a wee bit difficult for Your Mama to look past all that blue chip contemporary art that is practically bursting out through the arched French doors and black shuttered windows. Just a few of the notable artists Your Mama recognizes around the house include Fred Tomaselli, John Currin, Anish Kapoor, Keith Haring, Matthew Ritchie, Marc Newsom, Raqib Shaw, Shiro Kuramata, and Wendell Castle just to name a few. Your Mama encourages the children to call out any other big–or not so big–name artists represented in George Junior's undeniably impressive collection.

Given that George Junior is shoulder deep in the Miami art scene and a major player in the city's fun in the sun Art Basel Miami Beach, Your Mama would not bet our long bodied bitches Linda and Beverly that he'll be leaving the area. But then again, what do we know? If we've said it once we've said a thousand and one times, who are we to understand the real estate ways of the ridiculously rich?

George Junior's name–plus that of another Lindemann–also appears on the records a Miami Beach condominium at theIl Villagio complex on Ocean Drive that was purchased in April of 2006 for $2,950,000. In July of 2009, records also reveal, George Junior spent an undisclosed but, based on mortgage information, enormous amount of money on an 11,113 square foot house in Aspen, CO.

Ain't life sweet for the children of billionaires?

Sunday, December 20, 2009

UPDATE: Julius Shulman

All you modernist architecture buffs fasten your seat belts because Your Mama had a few minutes to spare this evening between afternoon gin & tonics and evening nerve pills so we thought we'd toss up a few photos of the Raphael S. Soriano designed residence in the Hollywood Hills of the late, great architectural photographer Julius Shulman that recently hit on the market with an asking price of $2,495,000.

We could do without the ash gray bathtub, the harvest gold wall to wall carpeting and, let's be honest butter beans, the kitchen could use a little sprucing, but the dressing room is dee-voon, the dining room table and chairs are almost too much to bear–in a good way–and we'll take two of those glass orb table lamps in the living room please.

P.S. More photos of this modernist masterpiece can be seen here.

Friday, December 18, 2009

David Boreanaz Moving On

SELLER: David Boreanaz and Jaime Bergman
LOCATION: Los Angeles, CA
PRICE: $3,249,000
SIZE: 3,152 square feet, 3 bedrooms, 3.5 bathrooms
DESCRIPTION: Private & tranquil home set in the hills above the Sunset Strip. This pristine residence has been transformed over the years into a luxurious compound. Vaulted ceilings in the living rm. Updated kitchen w/ a family rm & eat-in area. Upstairs is the private master suite w/ city views. Amazing detached state of the art media/guest house w/ a full dark hued bar. Upstairs is a bed + office/bed & full bath. Tranquil sitting areas w/ fire pits, an outdoor kitchen and romantic fireplace.

YOUR MAMAS NOTES: Bones actor David Boreanaz has been much in the news lately, or at least splashed across all the gossip glossies, tabloids and blogs, due to his alleged affair with now infamous VIP party hostess and alleged ho wrangler Rachel Uchitel who has become a household name lately due to her alleged affair with that 14-timing dog Tiger Woods. Now listen children, Your Mama ain't saying there's a connection, because we certainly don't know nuthin' from a screwdriver, but not long after word leaked out that Mister Boreanaz had allegedly done the dirty with Miss Uchitel while his acturuss wifey Jaime Bergman was preggers with their second baby, the married couple's house above Los Angeles' Sunset Strip hit the market with an asking price of $3,249,000.

Mister Boreanaz is the Saturn Award winning lead player and a producer on a tee-vee program called Bones. His past entertainment bizness successes include a few years on Buffy the Vampire Slayer, which lucky for him, turned into a spin-off show called Angel. In the late 1990s Mister Boreanaz's blondie baby momma Jaime Bergman worked as a St. Pauli Girl and later bared her boobies and baby maker in the slick pages of Playboy as well as appeared in at least a couple of Playboy videos. Miss Bergman moved into more mainstream fare with roles like "Girl #2" in Shasta McNasty and "Buxum Blond" in Soulkeeper before she had a good couple of years playing the naughtily named B.J. Cummings on a program called Son of the Beach, a short-lived parody on Baywatch.

Property records are a wee bit wacky on this one, but best as we can tell, Mister Boreanaz bought his two parcel property in May of 2000 for an undisclosed amount of money. As best as we can sort out from listing information, the compound like residence contains 3 bedrooms and 3.5 poopers in the main house and another one or two bedrooms and a single pooper in the detached guesthouse/media room that opens up to the brick terrace that surrounds the dark bottomed swimming pool and spa.

The property is fully walled, gated and hedged–meaning there ain't nuthin' for none of you people to see iffin any of you puppies get a wild and stoopid hair to hop in your hoopdies and head up into the hills above the Sunset Strip. Behind the gates, the front facade of the ranch style residence presents an unassuming and lackluster air of modesty and, quite frankly, looks like about 80% of the houses in far less glittery but no less celebified Studio City, CA.

Inside, things improve dramatically. On one side of the narrow entrance hall is a living room with wood floors, a fireplace and a vaulted and beamed ceiling. Mister and Missus Boreanaz have furnished the room in a comfortable and traditional–if not particularly inspired–manner with a brown leather sofa and a couple of chunky brown leather chairs flanking the fireplace. What Your Mama appreciates most about the day-core in this room are those deep orange velvet curtains and that the knick knacks and paddy whacks actually look like they were bought and placed around the room by the home owner and not a nice, gay decorator trying to make it look like the home owner did the decorating.

Opposite the living room is the family room which has the same wood floors and vaulted and beamed ceiling as the living room. A huge red sectional sofa is tucked up into the corner for the best viewing of the flat screen tee-vee mounted on the wall. The cottage vibe continues in the renovated and well equipped eat-in kitchen which has more of the same lovely wood floors and vaulted and beamed ceiling as in the living and family rooms, top grade stainless steel appliances, a work island wrapped with beadboard and topped with a chopping board wood counter top.

The simply and barely furnished master bedroom is privately situated on the second floor, according to listing information, and includes a vaulted ceiling, built-in cabinetry, French doors that open to a small, private balcony, an updated pooper wrapped mostly in a yellow-ish tumbled stone tile, and a custom fitted walk-in closet.

The media room has state of the art equipment, according to listing information, and dark, chocolate wood built-ins, deep red velvet black out curtains, and a cozy if hard to keep clean white sofa and a couple of white upholstered chairs surround a dark red, tufted ottoman. A good chunk of the media room is, unfortunately, dedicated to a saloon-like space with a lot of dark wood, a built-in bar with a few bar stools, and a circular built-in booth lit by a crystal chandelier. About the only nice thing we're prepared to say about this saloon-like space is that it's a perfectly convenient spot near all the booze where liquor lovers like Your Mama can belly up to the bar on movie night.

Beside the swimming pool and behind the guesthouse/media room, are a fire pit with built-in seating surrounding it and a trellis shaded outdoor entertainment area with a fireplace and a built-in barbecue center that includes several cooking surfaces, a sink, a fridge and a beer tap. Now chickens, we know that some of you beer people will swoon over the built-in beer tap but it only reminds Your Mama of those three horrible frat house parties we made the mistake of going to a thousand years ago, back in our university days. Of course, if that tap could be converted to a gin & tonic dispenser we just might feel differently about it.

One of the Boreanaz's nearby neighbors is none other than celebrity plastic surgeon Richard Ellenbogen who the children may recall appeared regularly on that disturbing reality program Dr. 90210 and who, coincidentally, listed his house directly across the street from Mister and Missus Boreanz in October of 2009. Dr. Ellenbogen's vine covered villa remains for sale with an asking price of $3,495,000.

Property records show Mister Boreanaz also owns a 1,680 square foot condo in Park City, UT that he picked up in July 2006 for $829,920.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

A Preening Park Avenue Penthouse

SELLER: Your Mama Don't Know
LOCATION: 778 Park Avenue, New York, NY
PRICE: $24,500,000
SIZE: 4 bedrooms, 4.5 bathrooms

YOUR MAMAS NOTES: Okay puppies, buckle your seat belts because Your Mama going slightly out of our celebrity real estate purview in order to discuss a penthouse apartment in one of New York City's whitest white glove buildings, 778 Park Avenue.

No chickens, were not going to blather on about the late Brooke Astor's 14-room residence on the 15th and 16th floors of the ridiculously dignified Rosario Candela designed apartment tower that was first listed in May of 2008 at $46,000,000 and is still sitting unsold at $24,900,000. Instead, we're gonna rip into another penthouse at 778, this one located on the 18th and 19th floors and recently heaved on to the market with an asking price of $24,500,000. If that eye-popping price don't make y'all want to pull your teeth out from anxiety and flabbergast, maybe the $15,420 monthly maintenance fees will. Lo-ward knows the monthlies have Your Mama reaching for the smelling salts and nerve pills.

Because co-operative apartment buildings in New York City have historically not been required to file property transfer documents–buyers technically purchase shares of stock allocated to a particular apartment and not the actual apartment–and because Your Mama's powers for sussing and sorting out property proprietorship only go so far, we feel we must to confess that we don't have the slightest ideeur who owns this place. But day-um is it ever a New York City damn doozy. We're certain one of the children knows who this 9-room hunk of refined residential fabulosity belongs to and perhaps they'll be so kind and generous as to sneak the name to Your Mama. Come on you Park Avenue kiddies, no one will ever know it was you.

Before any of you children start in on Your Mama about how the day-core looks like the inside of a damn half-and-half carton, recognize that the first thing we'd do is throw some color around the rooms and hang a few choice pieces of artwork, say something like this. Or this. Or maybe one of these beauties. Despite the lack of intense color, and maybe because of, every inch of this place oozes a certain kind of don't wear your shoes in the house sophistication that is certainly not how Your Mama and the Dr. Cooter do up our day-core. Even still, we could quite easily and gleefully slip into that cloud like living room, open to French doors that lead to one of the penthouses five small terraces and spend a few hours with all the latest gossip glossies and our back log of New Yorker magazines we've been meaning to read while the sizzle, crackle, hum and horns of New York City waft through the room like the smell of bacon cooking in the morning.

What Your Mama is really drawn to here, however, is not the elegant and understated–and still somehow not quite finished looking–day-core, but the floor plan, which has Your Mama hyperventilating with desire and real estate envy. It's not often that Your Mama runs across an apartment in a top tier building that induces uncontrollable salivation because, let's be honest babies, Your Mamais not nor will ever be a Park Avenue sort of person no matter how many hideously expensive hot pink boxes of Fauchon chocolate we throw down our gullet.

Anyhoo, we digress...At first glance the floor plan looks like a higgledy-piggledy collection of rooms that barely relate to each other, but upon closer examination we find a complicated yet completely sensible program that is really rather well resolved and successfully separates the public rooms from the private spaces. The public rooms include a commodious but still intimately sized living room situated four or five steps down from the foyer with a fireplace, 12-foot high ceilings, park and city views and terrace access. Speaking of the foyer, this really is one of the better foyers Your Mama has laid eyeballs on in a long time. Call us ka-ray-zee, and we're shore you will, but we rather adore how the utter simplicity and swooping contemporary built-in sofa that wraps around the back wall sets the stage for the (mostly) blissful marriage of this pre-war cougar to a much younger and more modern but still traditionally minded huzband.

The library, located off the foyer and paneled with wood that has a rich red undertone and a bright red over note, acts as the bridge between the public rooms and the bedroom wing. Listing information shows the duplex penthouse includes 4 bedrooms and 4.5 marble poopers. However, from the looks of things it's currently being utilized as a very roomy two or maybe three bedroom aerie with the very privately situated master suite being comprised of two rooms–a sitting room and a boo-dwar–plus two wonderfully windowed poopers and four closets, two of them being walk-ins large enough for all the Lanvin and Louboutins a ladee could want. A guest bedroom with a slim terrace and private pooper completes the bedroom wing and a flex-use space on the second floor above the kitchen can be used as an additional bedroom, staff quarters, gym, yoga studio, s/m dungeon, or etc. Given it's access is through the kitchen, Your Mama and the Dr. Cooter would definitely utilize the space as a home office where we could spend out days tapping our fat fingers to the nubbins on our trusty laptop trying to provide the children with some good real estate meat to chew on.

The one significant beef we have with the floor plan is the lack of an informal eating area and the dearth of windows and natural light in the kitchen, which our imperious, sun seeking house gurl Svetlana would probably have a hissy fit about. Otherwise it's a perfectly lovely cooker with white cabinets lower cabinets and white, glass fronted upper cabinets, wood floors and counter tops that look like they might be a gorgeous, glossy mahogany or possibly copper. Anyone? Bueller? Bueller?

Twenty four and some million smackers is a hell of a lot of money for this or any other apartment, but considering the most recent sale recorded at 778 Park Avenue was in August of 2008 when a 1 bedroom and 1.5 pooper penthouse doo-plex (plus one staff room and bathroom) on the 19th and 20th floors went for $10,250,000, the current asking price may just be in the ball park. 778 Park Avenue, some of the children may recall, is the same hotsy-totsy building where well born wedding and lifestyle guru Vera Wang sold her 14-room, full floor apartment for $33,600,000 so that she could move into her parent's old place at the even more hoity-toity 740 Park Avenue.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

The Julius Shulman House Hits The Market

SELLER: Estate of Julius Shulman
LOCATION: Woodrow Wilson Drive, Los Angeles, CA
PRICE: $2,495,000
SIZE: 3,382 square feet, 3 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms

YOUR MAMAS NOTES: All day long Your Mama has been getting communiques, calls and taps on the shoulder about the renowned architecture photographer Julius Shulman's house in the Laurel Canyon area of Los Angeles hitting the market with an asking price of $2,495,000. We'd love to say we were the first to put something up about it, but in fact the fine folks at Curbed LA beat us to the punch by about two minutes.

Mister Shulman, who went to meet the great photo developer in the sky in July of 2009 at the ripe old age of 98, was perhaps the most famous and accomplished photographer of architecturally significant homes. Over the course of his sixty-some year career he snapped iconic images of dozens of architecturally significant structures including Richard Neutra's Kaufmann House in Palm Springs, John Lautner's Chemosphere in the Hollywood Hills, and Pierre Koenig's Case Study House #22 (a.k.a. The Stahl House) in Los Angeles, arguably the most famous architectural photo ever taken in the United States. Mister Shulman also framed up and photographed of buildings and residences by influential 20th-century architects such as Frank Lloyd Wright, Charles and Ray Eames, Mies van der Rohe and the outrageously amazing Oscar Neimeyer.

In 1947, Mister Shulman commissioned modernist architect Raphael S. Soriano to design a steel-framed residence and studio on a secluded .76-acre lot at the end of a 175-foot semi-private driveway on Woodrow Wilson Drive that backs up to conservancy land, ensuring privacy and seclusion. According to listing information the resulting residence (and studio) measures 3,382 square feet and includes 3 bedrooms and 3 poopers.

Sadly, the Shulman House remains the last unaltered and unmolested residence designed and built by Raphael S. Soriano making it a hot commodity and serious architectural collectors item. According to listing information, the residence retains its original cork panels, flooring, fixtures and hardwood walls as well as extensive built-ins including drawers, shelves, headboards, pedestal beds, bookcases and china cabinets. The expansive living room, according to listing information, has a floor to ceiling fireplace and floor to to ceiling sliding glass doors while the kitchen includes the original cook top, double ovens, fixtures and built in bench seating in the breakfast nook.

The studio, located across a brick courtyard and just 16 feet from the main house, features a built-in desk and cabinetry, a fireplace, private pooper and, natch, a dark room where Mister Shulman developed many of his famous photographs. The indoor spaces bleed into the outdoor spaces through huge walls of sliding glass doors, screened patios.

Much to Your Mama's architecture loving peace of mind, the property was designated a Los Angeles Historic-Cultural Monument in 1987. A hefty handful of images of the Shulman House can be seen here.


Conservative Commentator Glenn Beck Lists at a Loss

SELLER: Glenn Beck
LOCATION: New Canaan, CT
PRICE: $3,999,000
SIZE: 8,720 square feet, 6 bedrooms, 5 full and 3 half bathrooms

YOUR MAMAS NOTES: Thanks to Big Dave over at Celebrity Address Aerial, who recently sent Your Mama a most lovely missive, we've learned that the eerily successful, pasty faced right wing crybaby Glenn Beck has listed his family manse in New Canaan, CT with an asking price of $3,999,000.

Mister Beck is, of course, the conservative/libertarian darling of the allegedly fair and balanced Fox News who regularly espouses provocative and sometimes contradictory points of view that include–but are hardly limited to: Believing global warming is a "manufactured crisis"; Suggesting on national tee-vee that the U.S. government is building FEMA concentration camps in an effort to institute a totalitarian state, a statement he has since denied and retracted; And repeatedly putting forward the notion that Obama's nearly dead in the water health care plan is a Trojan Horse designed to make reparations for slavery. Listen chickens, Your Mama does not want to get into a heated political debate because this is neither the time nor the place to do so. However, even though we do actually believe that Mister Beck sincerely thinks of himself as an American patriot standing up for all that is right and good in this country, we'd be lying like a rug if we didn't say that we think 99 percent of what Mister Beck tearfully moans and groans about on the boob-toob ain't nuthin' but a heaping pile of steaming dog poo.

Anyhoo, according to public property records, the former Catholic turned Mormon and his second wifey Tania purchased their 2.87 acre property in December of 2005 for $4,250,000. A few flicks of the well worn beads on our bejeweled abacus reveals that even at a full price sale at it's current asking, Mister and Missus Beck are looking at a $250,000 loss plus the fat real estate fees that will need to be paid. But don't none of you children cry over Mister Becks financial loss because it ain't nuthin' but spilled milk. According to the folks at Forbes, Mister Beck hauled in around $23,000,000 in 2008 and will likely pocket much more in 2009. So, you know, he can well afford to take a quarter million dollar hit on his damn house without anyone feeling the least bit sorry for him because ain't none of his four children gonna go hungry or without adequate health care.

Listing information shows the 4-floor, 16-room Colonial style house was built in 2004, measures a sizable 8,720 square feet–or 11,320 square feet depending where on the listing one peeps–and includes 6 bedrooms and 5 full and 3 half poopers. Your Mama imagines that with 8 damn terlits Missus Beck is either a bizzy little bee scrubbing all them terlits or they've got a part-time minimum wage gurl whose only responsibility is brushing up the bowls several times a week.

Listing photos of the recovering alcoholic and drug addict's lake front mansion are few, but it's really not much of a surprise to Your Mama that the day-core of what we can see runs toward the traditional and the patriotic with herringbone wood floors, a large, antique looking American flag in the foyer, a dignified moss green paint on the walls in the living room and at least 4 fireplaces. We'd bet our long-bodied bitches Linda and Beverly that there is at least one Barca-damn-lounger in the house too.

Other amenities at the well-groomed Beck estate include, according to listing information, garage parking for four cars, four (or more) fireplaces, a full, finished walk-out basement, a second floor laundry facility, and a finished attic space. Given Mister Beck's lightening rod status, we imagine he's had the security beefed up to Fort Knox standards and any of the children who might have the damn fool notion to drive by Mister Beck's house ought to remember that Mister Beck believes whole heartedly in the Second Amendment and, quite possibly, bears arms.

The extensive grounds, which are well surrounded by thick woods for privacy and magnificent fall-time leaf peeping, include an acre or two of meticulously maintained lawns, stacked stone walls and white fencing, an in-ground swimming pool and spa and, in the front yard, a civic-center sized flag pole Your Mama likes to imagine Mister Beck climbing up and sliding down while blubbering like a baby with his trademark, near hysterical patriotic zeal.

Given that they are filthy rich, it's quite possible–and likely–that Mister and Missus Beck own several properties either for personal use or as investments. However, the only other property besides their primary residence in New Canaan that a peep and a poke around property records turns up is an 1,845 square foot house in Fort Lauderdale that Missus Beck purchased in her own name in July of 2000 for $156,800. Where the Becks are headed to is a complete mystery to Your Mama but iffin we were to wager a few dollars on it, we'd guess they're moving on to even more luxurious, private and expensive circumstances.