SELLER: Connie Stevens
LOCATION: Los Angeles, CA
SIZE: 12,000 (or so) square feet (total), 7 bedrooms, 8 bathrooms
YOUR MAMAS NOTES: Looks like the sharp downturn in the economy a few years ago put a pecuniary pinch on on the pocketbook of Tinseltown icon turned skin care tycoon Connie Stevens
who—as first reported last week by the ever industrious kids at Curbed—listed her grandly proportioned celebrity-style estate in the Holmby Hills area of Los Angeles last week with an asking price of $17,999,000.
As it turns out her Holmby Hills spread isn’t the only residence Miz Stevens currently has on the open market, recently sold or—woe is her—lost to the hungry and unforgiving maw of foreclosure. Before we get to all that complicated and ugly real estate business, however, let’s start with the compound-like Holmby Hills estate that property records indicate Miz Stevens picked up way back in February 1974 for $350,000. No babies, Your Mama’s early morning gin & tonic did not cause us to omit a zero; She actually paid $350,000 for nearly two acres in the geographic heart of one of Los Angeles’ most exclusive and expensive neighborhoods.
A double-gated red brick circular drive cuts through a towering privacy hedge and bends tightly up to a hotel-like black and white striped awning over the front door of the stately main house, a 1939 white brick center hall Colonial designed by the revered architect Paul Williams. Current listing information shows there are seven bedrooms and eight bathrooms (including a two bedroom staff suite) in the main house that the Los Angeles County Tax Man’s records indicate measures in at a considerable but hardly colossal 8,460 square feet.
In addition to the main house, additional living quarters includes two, two story one bedroom townhouse type guesthouses—one for each of her daughters, Joely and Tricia—a separate chauffeur’s apartment and a two bathroom pool house.
As far as Your Mama knows no interior photos of the house have been released as part of the marketing for the mansion but listing information does reveal the main mansion contains a double-height foyer with a quintessentially Paul Williams “grand sweeping circular staircase,” formal living and dining rooms, a library/study, a billiard room and a spacious open-plan family room that adjoins the eat-in kitchen. There are, as per listing information, a total of five fireplaces in the main house including one in the second floor master suite that also features a walk-in closet and dressing area.
The fully finished third floor attic contains home fitness room and dance studio, the fully finished basement level a wine cellar and there’s also a separate recording studio and “on line studio,” a room Your Mama imagines is equipped with all the necessary digital accoutrement for surfing the web.
The driveway extends up along the north side of the main mansion where passes under a porte cochere (on top of which is a terraces) and connects to the estate’s extensive automobile parking and storage area that encompasses an attached three car garage plus car ports for up to eight more cars.
The expansive and mostly landscaped but un-fussily groomed grounds include a large flat lawns at the front and back, extensive rose gardens, numerous terraces including a trellis shaded one for shade seekers, an extra long Olympic length swimming pool, a tree-ringed gazebo and spa and a sunken lighted tennis court with viewing deck and what appears to Your Mama to be an enclosed viewing pavilion.
Miz Stevens’s estate is surrounded by other equally and even more monumental estates owned by a long list of L.A. luminaries such as Top 40 radio honcho Kasey Kasem, who Your Mama hears quietly wants forty-two million clams for his 17 pooper property (above), and fashion designer Max Azria, who paid $16,000,000 for a 20,000-plus square foot behemoth with 22 bathrooms originally designed by architect Paul Williams and once owned by prolific novelist Sidney Sheldon.
Also in the hoity toity ‘hood is the Playboy Mansion as well as the super-luxe spread owned by wealthy divorcée and former Dodger’s owner/executive Jamie McCourt (above) who bought the posh property in happier times with ex-hubby Frank McCourt in 2004 from Babyface Edmunds for $21,2500,000 and recently spent God only knows how many millions more to install an partially subterranean indoor swimming pool complex where she swims laps every day. Back in March (2012) Your Mama heard from a well-connected acquaintance we’ll call Heidi N. Holmbyhills that ex-Missus McCourt allows at least one of the Platinum Triangle’s big name Realtors to discreetly shows the property with a $65 million price tag.
Not quite but almost directly across the street from Miz Stevens is the high-hedged and tree ringed backside of a 10,000-plus square foot faux-Tudor residence owned by bitterly divorced former couple Kelsey and Camille Grammer (above). The Grammers have on and off unsuccessfully endeavored to unload the property since mid-2008 when it popped up with a $19.9 million price tag. The house was just re-listed for the 979th time with an asking price of $15,995,000. The children may recall that Mister and third ex-Missus Grammer have had some recent legal wrangles over the house. So the story goes Camille wants to sell it fast and Kelsey wants to move his fourth wife and new baby into it. Oh, what a tangled real estate web some celebrities weave. But, we digress.
Also across the street and next door to the Grammer pad is a nearly two acre estate (above) originally built by gangster Bugsy Siegel for his wife and children, formerly owned by make-up mogul Max Factor and currently owned by three time Emmy winning super producer Bud Yorkin (What’s Happening, All in the Family, Sanford and Son). Mister Yorkin first put the property up for sale in early 2010 with a wildly optimistic $49.5 million and currently has up for grabs with a gigantically reduced $22,900,000 price tag.
Also for sale in the immediate area is the almost three acre estate and low-slung contemporary of the late lawyer Arthur Crowley. The approximately 9,000 square foot single story sprawler was first hoisted on to the open market in early 2011 with a $23,000,000 asking price. Since then the property has been de- and re-listed at least three times and now has an asking price of $17,250,000.
Stay tuned for details and dish on some of the many other properties from California to New York City owned, loved, for sale, sold and/or lost by Miz Stevens.
listing photos: Keller Williams Beverly Hills
listing photo (Kasem): Fortune Homes / Keller Williams Realty
overhead aerial image (McCourt): Google
listing photo (Grammer): Coldwell Banker Previews International
listing photo (Yorkin): Westside Estate Agency
listing photo (Crowley): Coldwell Banker Previews International