SELLER: Casey and Jean Kasem
LOCATION: Los Angeles, CA
SIZE: 12,000+/- square feet, 7 bedrooms, 17 bathrooms
YOUR MAMAS NOTES: While a few of the children lodged angry and articulate complaints about Your Mama’s work ethic last night we received an unexpected ringy-dingy from a deliciously well-connected Platinum Triangle real estate insider with whom we’re pleasantly acquainted—let’s call her Paulina Propertypurveyor—who spilled the high-end real estate beans about Top 40 radio pioneer Casey Kasem and his crib-hawking former actress wife Jean quietly making their Los Angeles, CA estate available for purchase with a lip-smacking asking price of $42,000,000.
Although it seems rather quaint and even Old-Timey nowadays, once upon a time music lovers voluntarily and in droves tuned their radio dials each week to listen to Mister Kasem enthusiastically count down the forty most popular pop and pop-rock songs on American Top 40, his long-running, highly rated, terrifically lucrative, and nationally syndicated radio program that spawned a half dozen or more satellite radio programs such as Casey’s Hot 20 and Casey’s Countdown. Along with pioneering and then milking the Top 40 radio genre for all it’s worth, Mister Kasem also did voice over work for scads and scores of commercials and cartoons. Maybe some of y’all may or may not already know that for forty years, until 2009, Mister Kasem—now 80 years old—provided the voice for half-witted hippie Shaggy in the Scooby-Doo franchise.
Statuesque Missus Kasem, bless her platinum pony-tailed heart, used to be a bit of a bit-part actress. Her Showbiz salad days were, without question, 1984 to 1993 when she portrayed the beautiful and sinfully curvaceous but woefully feeble-minded hausfrau Loretta Tortelli on Cheers and its blessedly short-lived spin off The Tortellis. Since she (essentially) retired from Tinseltown in the late 1990s—she did do a week on Hollywood Squares in 2003—Missus Kasem has secured a dozen or more trademarks and patents for her expanding line of pricey (and frequently ostentatious) baby cribs and other such baby-centric products. ‘Tis true, butter beans. She’s a bit of a high-end crib tycooness.
Anyhoo, Mister and Missus Kasem were married in 1980 and property records show they acquired their huge house just north of Sunset Boulevard in the fulsomely affluent Holmby Hills area of Los Angeles almost a decade later, in July 1989. They paid—brace yourselves—just $1,725,000 for the 2.39-acre estate, which they bought from attorney/real estate developer Abraham M. Lurie. A few quick calculations on Your Mama’s bejeweled abacus shows that’s almost 25 times less than its current $42,00,000 price tag.
The Los Angeles County Tax Man shows the single-story, multi-winged mansion was originally built in 1954 and measures 7,609 square feet with seven bedrooms and nine bathrooms. Marketing materials generously (and surreptitiously) provided by our pal Paulina Propertypurveyor shows the “freshly rehabbed” house encompasses a significantly more substantial 12,000 square feet (plus or minus) with 7 bedrooms and an astounding 17 bathrooms. Have mercy! Seventeen bathing and evacuating facilities in one home means Mister and Missus Casem probably need at least two, part-time minimum wage workers whose only domestic concerns are scrubbing showers and polishing crappers.
The high-hedged and no-doubt heavily fortified estate has a long, gated driveway that cuts across a vast swathe of unnaturally green grass; a circular motor court at the front of the house that can, as per marketing materials we perused, “comfortably fit 15+ vehicles” (plus a few more in a rear motor court and three car attached garage); several large stone terraces for large-scale entertaining and elegant outdoor lounging; a parterre garden tucked back behind the garage; a sunken, north/south oriented tennis court with subterranean cabana; and a campy, heart-shaped swimming pool backed by a trio of even more campy gazebos.
The neighboring mansions and estates, must hidden behind gates and high hedges like Mister and Missus Kasem’s, are owned by rich and famous folks who include actress turned entrepreneurs Connie Stevens and Jaclyn Smith, fashion tycoon Max Azria, couture collecting society maven Betsey Bloomingdale, sitcom star Kelsey Grammer and/or his reality tee-vee star ex-wife Camille Grammer—we’re not sure which of them was granted ownership of this house in their bitter bitter bitter divorce last year, and Richard and Lauren King who had their own Holmby Hills estate next door to the Kasem crib listed last year for $65,000,000.
A quick spin through public property records available on the interweb indicates Mister and Missus Kasem maintain a somewhat slender real estate portfolio. Besides their sprawling spread in Holmby Hills the Kasems also own a quartet of vacant desert parcels that total 6.56 acres near the unlikely (and difficult-to-love) Lancaster, CA, as well as a petite, ocean-view one bedroom and 1.5 bathroom condo at Malibu’s Holiday House that—as it turns out—is currently available for lease at $12,000 per month. A person wouldn’t know it looking at the ticky-tacky balcony railing or the antique-looking carved stone mantelpiece shown in listing photos (above) but the Holiday House was originally built in 1956 and designed by cutting edge architect Richard Neutra. (It once looked like this, now it looks like this.)