BUYER: Lea Michele
SELLER: Norman Jean Roy
LOCATION: Los Angeles, CA
SIZE: 1,805 square feet, 2 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms
YOUR MAMAS NOTES: No doubt a result of too much late night and early morning gin, Your Mama seems to be well behind the celebrity real estate 8-ball this week. We are just now getting to the modestly-sized and fully-updated and upgraded if hardly inexpensive Los Angeles, CA bungalow purchased last week by Glee gal Lea Michele for $1,400,000 and already much discussed by just about every celebrity and property gossip across the globe.
Miss Michele is most probably widely known by tee-vee watching tweens, teens and gays for her downright committed portrayal of enormously talented, wildly insecure and insufferably ambitious singing dervish Rachel Barry on Glee, a plum role for which she was nominated for an Emmy in 2010 and reportedly earns about $40-45,000 per episode. Howevuh, puppies, before the 25-year old Bronx-born brunette went Hollywood and rocketed to boob-toob super stardom in 2009 she was a bone fide Broadway sensation with prominent roles in highly acclaimed musical productions like Les Misérables, Ragtime, Fiddler on the Roof and the sensationally successful rock-musical Spring Awakening.
Like her 23-year old Glee co-star Kevin McHale—he’s the one who scoots around in a wheelchair but in real life is not confined to a wheelchair—who just laid out $1,025,000 for a glassy and re-worked mid-century modern in the Hollywood Hills and Twilighter Anna Kendrik who recently spent a smidgen over a million bucks on a newly renovated contemporary above L.A.’s quintessentially L.A. Beachwood Canyon ‘hood, Miss Michele smartly and humbly opted for a more prudently priced (and sized) residence rather than go berserk and drop a few million on a flashy (and high-maintenance) real estate monument to her new-found financial prowess.
Listen, we wish Miss Michele all future success but—let’s get real kittens—Hollywood ain’t nuthin’ if not a cautionary tale about the easy come and easy go of fame and fortune built on the shifting sands of Show Business. Sometimes young actors peak early and fade into oblivion young. Just think of all those kids on Beverly Hills 90210 and Melrose Place back in the 1990s. Sure, some went on to big time careers and glossy magazine covers. But others, well, not so much.
Anyhoo, eagle-eyed (and sober) children may recognize Miz Michele’s new crib as the very same high-hedged and electronically-gated property situated in a centrally-located and celebrity-friendly area of Hollywood known as Sunset Square and owned by celebrity picture taker Norman Jean Roy. Your Mama discussed Mister Roy’s now Miss Michele’s domestic digs in mid-March (2012) when he listed the property on the open market with an asking price of $1,395,000.
Property records and listing information shows the single-story, mid-block bungalow was originally built in 1920 and measures in at 1,805 square feet with 2 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, an office (or potential 3rd bedroom), L-shaped living/dining/den area with fireplace and French doors, well-equipped galley-style kitchen, and a bespoke master bathroom with steam shower.
A vine-draped trellis shades a dining deck with built-in barbecue station that extends off the back of the house and steps down to a compact, hedge-girdled back yard with paver-stone parking pad, detached two-car garage with loft storage area, and a plunge-sized solar-heated saltwater swimming pool sunk into a lush patch of unnaturally green grass.
Miss Michele, according to property records and previous reports, paid five grand over Mister Roy’s asking price, an indication—but not, of course, proof—she may have faced a bit of competition during the negotiations to acquire the modernized and well-maintained bungalow.
Mis Michele’s new abode sits in the very same neck of the Hollywood woods as homes owned by Tinseltowners like Academy Award-winning filmmaker Dustin Lance Black (purchased fall 2010 for $1,455,000), inestimable actress and activist Sally Struthers (purchased February 1991 for $762,500), and stylish actress Selma Blair (listed earlier this year for $1,780,000 and no longer on the open market). Reality queen turned clothing designer Lauren Conrad’s Sunset Square residence is currently in escrow with an asking price of $2,100,000 and Nip/Tuck actor Dylan Walsh and his estranged wife Joanna Going recently sold their former family home in the ‘hood for $1,425,000 to writer Deborah Schoeneman and her husband Josh Groban.
Having nothing at all to do with Miss Michele’s recent real estate activities…Miz Schoeneman once wrote features for the real estate section of The New York Observer as well as contributes or contributed to other publications and websites that include (but are not limited to) New York Magazine, The New York Times, Angeleno and The Huffington Post. She penned a 2006 novel about celebrity gossips called 4% Famous and currently writes for the Judd Apatow-produced tee-vee show Girls. Incidentally and also of no consequence to anything related to Miss Michele, Miz Schoeneman’s bio photo on her website shows her sitting pretty in a tufted pink leather booth at The Madonna Inn, a fabulously campy and famously garish hotel-motel in San Luis Obispo (CA) where Your Mama occasionally likes to eat and drink with our elementary school pals Bee-bah and The Chicken. Miz Schoeneman’s husband Josh Groban is not, in case anyone might be curious, the singer Josh Groban but rather the Josh Groban who is a senior advisor to California governor Jerry Brown.
But we digress…
listing photos: Sotheby’s International Realty / Los Feliz