Farrukh Ghori





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Here Now, the Year's Very Best in Celebrity Mansion News

Monday, December 30, 2013, by Amy Schellenbaum

Whether it's because they sell sun-soaked Caribbean manses or rehabHamptons palaces, whether it's because they decorate eight cabins or flipaustere estates or recruit all-star designers to gloss-up their purchases, celebrity home news is always a good time. Here now, the absolute best moments of celebrity real estate and design, from the details on Mark Wahlberg's 30,000-square-foot Xanadu to the slick interiors of Sir Elton John's Martin Lawrence Bullard-designed swankspace.

  • ↑ Sir Elton John and his producer husband, David Furnish called upon longtime friend Martyn Lawrence Bullard—the sassy-pants, ultra high-endcelebrity designer and star of Bravo's Million Dollar Decorators—to boost the panache of the otherwise low-key abode, which the couple purchased last year.
  • ↑ Bullard, who also decorated the eye-popping Los Angeles condo John and Furnish listed last spring, suited up the 1966 single-story in lots of contemporary art and custom furniture, meshing the trim lines of the home's design origins and some 1970s-ish glam. "We focused on things that are colorful and positive and celebrations of life," Furnish says. The living room features Bullard-designed club chairs upholstered in Mongolian lamb, a print by American digital artist Jeremy Blake, and a pink-lacquer cocktail table by Lawson-Fenning. Elsewhere, there's a silver mylar ceiling, a second-century Roman sculpture, a Bullard-designed kelly-green sofa, and a Roy Lichtenstein piece in the backyard. [link]
  • ↑ Facing mounting debt over her multimillion dollar home renovation, in February Baywatch's Pamela Anderson listed her airy Malibu digs, asking$7.75M for the 2,700-square-foot beach house. "The house just enveloped me financially and I didn't know how to handle it," she's admitted about the property. Well, The Real Estalker has unearthed a much more robust bundle of photos—ones that aren't oddly staged or reliant on strange angles—revealing a surprisingly gorgeous contemporary spread with a nice flow between indoors and out, as the hackneyed expression goes.
  • ↑ The place is light and decorated with restraint, featuring a garage-style opening melding the living area—baby grand piano, cushy white sofas, and a slab of slate-colored stone below the fireplace—with the backyard. Upstairs, the master bedroom boasts gleaming wooden wardrobes and a corner fireplace, and a guest bedroom is home to a $14,000 bathtub manufactured by Agape, a schmancy Italian design firm. Outdoor amenities include the aforementioned saltwater pool, teak decking, a teepee, a garden with figs, herbs, and avocados, plus olive trees and lavender. It's splendid, for sure, though it's all admittedly dampened a bit by the, you know, financially crippling effects such a spectacular renovation incurred. [link]
  • ↑ Back in summer 2011, newlyweds Katy Perry and Russell Brand dropped$6.5M on a cavernous compound in Los Angeles, complete with coffered ceilings, huge fireplaces, and a stone-walled foyer. Ever since the couple's divorce last year, pop princess and "Teenage Dream" Perry has been trying to sell the house as a pocket listing; that is, without hulking all 8,835 square feet of faux Mediterranean manse into the realm of public mastication. Ah, but sometimes a gurl girl's got to do what a girl's got to do, and having failed to find a buyer willing to fork out the near $8M she was hoping for, Perry finallyofficially listed the place in April for $6.95M, offering a glimpse into the overwrought Spanish spread she never got around to actually living in. [link]
  • ↑ In 2009, when Ellen DeGeneres and Portia De Rossi bought their compound at the foothills of L.A.'s Santa Monica mountains, the place—at one time a Hollywood estate, in other years a monastery, a rehab center, and a horse facility—seemed a perfect fit for both: de Rossi could spend time with her horses while DeGeneres had eight cabins (plus a few horse barns) to revamp with imported brick and antique furniture. "I can only change the furniture so much and I get bored," Ellen, something of a design and antiques obsessive,told Elle Decor this month. "Then I need a new structure to work on." As seen in the photos above, there's hardly any part of the estate left untouched by the couple: the horse barn has a French chair from the early 1900s, and another outbuilding boasts a 17th-century Swedish farm table and circa-1930 armchairs. [link]
  • ↑ Ellen DeGeneres and her actress wife, Portia de Rossi, have sold Hidden Valley Farm, their stunning equestrian estate in Thousand Oaks, Calif., only six weeks after the property was first listed for $11M. The ranch must have seen a serious amount of interested buyers, because the Hollywood power couple and prolific house flippers upped the price in August to $12.995M, which is the last official ask. [link]
  • ↑ Not long after pop diva Christina Aguilera's bonkers, burlesque-inspiredBeverly Hills mansion finally sold—it had been listed nearly two years prior—the singer has found herself a new Mediterranean-style house on the cusp of Sherman Oaks and Beverly Hills, dropping $10M on a 11,107-square-foot sprawl in the celeb-saturated Mulholland Estates enclave of L.A.
  • ↑ Aguilera bought the mansion from private equity billionaire Tom Gores, who had snatched up the property—which brags six bedrooms, a bathhouse, saltwater pool, and gazebo—for $4.595M in 1999. The brokerbabble touts "meticulous custom design" and "rare finishings," but if the strange things foundin her old place—barbie heads! naked mannequins with eye patches! arm sconces!—are any indication, Aguilera needs rare, custom furnishings like she needs a hole in the head. Also on the property: an enclosed loggia, hand-painted finishes, "state of the art" security systems, two bars, and a marble bath with a steam shower. [link]
  • ↑ In April, country songstress Taylor Swift, the veritable connoisseur of Grammys, sparkly dresses, and ex boyfriends, is adding 'historic real estate' to her list of collectibles, having just laid down $17.75M in cash for a gorgeous, rambling seaside estate in Watch Hill, R.I. News of this purchase, a 1930 manse on five acres called High Watch, came only eight months ago Swift bought a Cape Cod compound nearby the family estate belonging to then-beau Conor Kennedy (which she flipped for an $870K profit following the split—she is, after all, queen of cashing in on breakups). Her new place boasts eight fireplaces, a 45-foot-long sun room, white oak floors, verandas, a library, and multiple kitchens. [link]
  • ↑ Comedic actor Vince VaughnWedding Crashers, Anchorman, Dodgeball—has picked up what is perhaps Southern California's least offensive, unobtrusive, and numbingly traditional house, a five-bedroom Colonial Vaughnbought for $3.925M. Though once noted as one of the priciest listings in the city of La Cañada Flintridge, the 5,563-square-foot abode—boasting a veryFather of the Bride-style façade, some nice, unexceptional interiors, an amply treed tennis court, and a swimming pool—ended up selling to Vaughn for less than a quarter of what the actor is asking for his other property, an exponentially flashier 12,000-square-foot triplex penthouse in Chicago that has been floundering on the market since 2011. [link]
  • ↑ Right at the beginning of summer, Jennifer Lopez purchased a Hamptons estate that last listed for $9.995M. On the property? A 8,659-square-foot main house on three acres, a second-story gazebo, sauna, steam room, theater, and pool. Oh, and plenty of room for a stalker-squatter to live there unnoticed.[link]
  • ↑ In May, actress Drew Barrymore hulked her cozy—well, as cozy as 6,258 square feet could possibly be—six-bedroom home in Montecito, Calif., on the market for $7.5M. It's a mild surprise that Barrymore's selling the 1937 SoCal estate, which the Charlie's Angels actress snatched up for $5.705M in 2010, as not even a year ago Barrymore and art consultant Will Kopelman got hitched on the property before the eyes of God, Reese Witherspoon, Jimmy Fallon, and Cameron Diaz. Anyway, the two-acre listing boasts a library, a genuine sun room, at least four fireplaces, a two-story guesthouse, and a huge kitchen that, in the immortal words of The Real Estalker, is "either loaded with vintage charm or a hot damn mess desperate out for for a redo." It's all above. [link]
  • ↑ In May, comedian, actor, and "wild and crazy guy" Steve Martin listed his Caribbean mansion in the postcard-perfect town of Lurin, St. Barthelemy, asking $11.24M for the 28,191-square-foot Villa Au Soleil. Inside the "tropical colonial," which Martin bought in 2008: exposed wood beams aplenty, views from, like, everywhere, and a private hot tub on the master bedroom terrace. There's also, as the brokerbabble puts it, "lush tropical gardens," a lily pond, a Balinese-style gazebo with a flat-screen TV, a "spectacular infinity pool," a multi-level sun deck, and a bird's-eye view of St. Barth's tiny airplane runway.
  • ↑ The PR people also brag about the half-acre property's "strong rental history," which seems to indicate that Martin hasn't had much trouble renting out the place in the off-season, which he started doing in fall 2008, asking $28K a week. Since its original list, the place has chopped its ask to $10.5M. [link]
  • ↑ Just six weeks after closing on a $4.34M mansion in Austin, Texas, cycling's most famous doper, Lance Armstrong, has sold that very mansion to racing driver Bret Curtis for an undisclosed sum. While it remains unclear if Armstrong flipped the property for a quick profit or sold for some other reason, he has moved on to a new Austin home, this one purchased from former Lieutenant Governor Ben Barnes just five days after closing on the lakefront pad. Barnes—no stranger to controversy himself after being caught up in Texas' Sharpstown scandal—and his wife had owned the 1924 Mediterranean-style manse in the Old West neighborhood since the mid-1980s. The 15,800-square-foot mansion, squeezed onto a half-acre lot, seems less than ideal for an embattled public figure, but that hasn't prevented Armstrong from quickly forking over millions for it. [link]
  • ↑ Actor Elijah Wood—aka Frodo from The Lord of the Ringsbought up a supremely Victorian mansion in Austin, Texas, for about $1M. Built in 1890 and bragging much in the way of voguish turn-of-the-century architectural details—the curling eaves! the unnecessary moulding! the two porches!—the entire 3,285-square-foot structure actually originated in Marlin, Texas, but has since been picked up, driven two hours south, and updated with (faux?) marble floors and a glassy attic. [link]
  • ↑ In August, singer Celine Dion listed her 5.7-acre, custom-built spread on Jupiter Island, Fla., which brags a 10,000-square-foot "Bahamian-inspired" main house, plus an eight-bedroom guesthouse, a tennis house (with a simulated golf range), a pool house (with a kitchen), and a beach house (with a massage room). There's also 415 feet of beach frontage and three pools, one of which abuts the ocean while the other two compose the home's very own water park, complete with a lazy river. [link]
  • ↑ When you're really rich and beautiful and build a much-whispered-about14,000-square-foot acid-washed limestone mansion from scratch, there's no better place for a big reveal than the glossy pages of Architectural Digest.Despite an early slipup by the builder, who released photos of the project prematurely, the magazine continued apace and published the "French chateau via the Pacific Coast Highway" built for New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady and supermodel Gisele Bündchen'.
  • ↑ It was important for the Bündchen, whom interior designer Joan Behnkedescribes as an "earth mother"—"she's drawn to certain things because of the energy they give off"—that the home incorporate as many reclaimed materials as possible, from the decking and floorboards to the tiles, bricks, doors, and marble fireplace surrounds. In addition, composting, gray-water technology, solar panels, and eco-friendly construction materials were all factored into the overall design, which was completed by architect Richard Landry. (Brady tells Rus that he's "all about team dynamics and putting the right people together," presumably while huddling.) The neutral interiors are filled with pieces from RH and Christian Liaigre, Loro Piana fabrics, Tai Ping carpets, custom pieces, and, of course, a black-and-white photo of Gillette Stadium hanging over the fireplace in the master bath. [link]
  • ↑ In October Elle Decor published a huge spread on Cameron Diaz'sManhattan apartment. Adding oomph to the story is the fact that the 2,400-square-foot unit was decorated by maximalist glamourpuss—sorry, that would be, ahem, "the West Coast's reigning queen of razzle-dazzle"—Kelly Wearstler, who was just the person to indulge the actress's "love of sparkly, shiny things."
  • ↑ Originally the apartment had "all-white rooms done up in a vaguely nautical theme," but Wearstler fixed all that with metallic tones, de Gournay wallpapers, chairs from Milo Baughman and Vladimir Kagan, dramatic light fixtures, luxe silks, vintage pieces from the 1960s, and, as one would expect, a couple of decorative disembodied body parts. [link]
  • ↑ Villa Maria, the 1919 Victorian summer mansion fashion frontman and Nine West founder Vince Camuto lovingly restored has endured quite the exciting year. The Hamptons sprawler that, in June, was primo Architectural Digestfodder, what with its Roman Catholic past and "summery, not ostentatious" redo by NYC architect André Tchelistcheff hit the market in October asking $49.5M.
  • ↑ The Camutos, who bought the place in 2005 from the Sisters of the Order of St. Dominic of Amityville for $35M, are ready to take on their next major Hamptons renovation: "We love transforming iconic properties, although this was certainly not a speculative project," said the Camutos in a statement. "Another opportunity has become available on a slightly smaller scale which we are very excited about." Intrigue for 2014.[link]
  • ↑ In October Dwell published a peek inside the "cabin loft" of actor Vincent Kartheiser, a.k.a. Pete Campbell on AMC's Mad Men. The totally custom spread, swathed in unadulterated organic midcentury yumminess and designed by Funn Roberts has all the types of goodies Dwell is obsessed with: Herman Miller lounges, Eames molded plastic chairs, a bed that drops from the ceiling, and—the best part—a headboard made of "a huge slab of redwood [fastened] to the wall ... on hinges so that, when the bed is raised, the piece of wood can flip down to double as a desk."
  • ↑ Upon hitting it big with Mad Men, Kartheiser, a Minnesota native, went a bit off-script, snatching up a 580-square-foot cabin in a city filled with bloated, multimillion-dollar real estate. Small it may be, but here it means that every detail, from the closet's shoji-inspired fiberglass-and-steel screens to the Montauk black slate in the (open) bathroom, is handpicked to forge a nugget of "Japanese-industrial" appeal. [link]
  • ↑ After pouring in some $20M into a renovation, a balls-to-the-wall overhaul that, in 2010, caught the eye of Harper's Bazaar, designer Tommy Hilfigeronce again listed his penthouse atop the famous NYC Plaza, this time asking $80M. [link]
  • ↑ After more than a year and a half groping for a buyer, after months quietly asking $28M, after many moons giving tours to the likes of David and Victoria Beckham, TMZ reported in October that superstar songstress Madonna finally sold her Beverly Hills mansion for $20M, $2.5M shy of her first official ask.Though rumors that Madge was looking to unload her French Chateau-style spread began swirling in March 2012, the Queen of Pop did not officially list her place until January of this year, when she heaved the compound, complete with a 17,000-square-foot main house and a tennis court, onto the market asking $22.5M. The $20M final sale may be a far cry from the $28M she was originally hoping for, but considering Madonna bought the place (from actress Sela Ward) for $12M just a decade ago, she's still pocketing $8M. [link]
  • ↑ In September, Wayne Newton's Las Vegas estate, hit the market for $70M, but that optimistic ask did not last long, as Casa de Shenandoah, as the property is called, got PriceChopped by $22M—nearly a third of its original ask—in November. It's now listed for $48M. Included: eight separate homes, a "car museum," 37 stables, an "equestrian pool," a tennis court, and, best of all, a "jumbo jet and terminal" meant to be used—as if there were any doubt by those marbleized interiors—"for entertaining." [link]
  • ↑ As architect Richard Landry, noted chateau sire to the stars and favorite among Saudi princes and Patriots quarterbacks alike, finished up his latest Southern California xanadu—a French manor in Beverly Park for actor Mark Wahlberg—home construction details oozed between the cracks like the grout between the rocks of a backyard water park. Eight fast facts about the 30,000-square-foot mansion, this way. [link]
  • ↑ Last week, singer Sheryl Crow officially relisted her Tennessee Ranch in College Grove for $3.85M, a full $3.65M less than the original ask. The Grammy Award-winner first listed Cross Creek Farm in March 2010 for $7.5M, only to PriceChop the cost by a whopping 40 percent the very next year—asking just $4.5M in May 2011. [link]
  • ↑ Ever since July 2012, A-list actor Leonardo DiCaprio has been trying to get rid of his beachfront Malibu spread, first with an attempt to rent it out in July 2012 and then with an official list, asking $23M in November 2012. Still, there were no bites for his narrow seven-bedroom, despite its rare patch of green abutting the boardwalk and it's primo location inside the body-guarding gates of the celebrity-saturated Malibu Colony neighborhood. And so the Inception starre-listed this summer, asking $18.9M. Last week, DiCaprio successfully sold the property, taking $17.35M for the seven-bedroom[link]

Source: Curbed.com

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