North Beverly Park Delivers Bargains for Billionaires

North Beverly Park Real estate bargain

Though it’s but four miles and a 10-minute drive from the showy hubbub of Rodeo Drive up to the guarded gatehouse of North Beverly Park, the much ballyhooed and occasionally maligned development of train-station-sized Neo-Tuscan villas and downright steroidal faux-chateaus is an ultra-private and utterly serene world apart from the hustle, bustle and hoi polloi.

Since its inception in the early 1990s, the sprawling and exactingly manicured community, divided into a north and smaller south section, has attracted a veritable army of high-net-worth individuals with a penchant for palace-proportioned homes. Current owners include a Saudi royal or two, a slew of entertainment industry bigwigs such as Sumner Redstone, Sylvester Stallone, Rod Stewart, Reba McEntire and Denzel Washington, Haim Saban, Ron Tutor and Avi Arad, and billionaire brothers Tom and Alec Gores.

Even still, while prices in some of L.A.’s most prime residential locales, i.e. Holmby Hills and Trousdale Estates, often exceed $3,000 per square foot, according to MLS data, Beverly Park, the north section in particular, remains a billionaire’s bargain, with average sale prices over the past few years that average about $1,650 per square foot. We wondered, with the skyrocketing prices that have mansions and estates in other parts of the city not infrequently trading for upwards of $40 million, why haven’t the prices in Beverly Park North kept pace?

We got on the horn and hollered at a handful of Platinum Triangle real estate movers and shakers who regularly do business in Beverly Park, and though some common objections came up, such as the lack of panty-dropping city lights views from most estates and the less-than-perfect approach to the enclave up much more humble San Ysidro Drive, all agreed that despite any perceived drawbacks, Beverly Park is primed for a significant price surge.

Hilton & Hyland’s Josh Altman, one of the stars of “Million Dollar Listing,” has brokered several big deals in Beverly Park, and he forecasts run-of-the-mill multimillionaires soon being priced out of the development by the bottomless bank accounts of billionaires. He also opined that the current marketplace’s unusually high demand for mega-mansions and the low inventory of super-sized cribs on massive lots in other prime parts of the city will most assuredly and soon drive Beverly Park prices into orbit.

Low-key but high-powered Elliman agents Connie Blankenship and Michelle Oliver, who have done more than 10 lease and purchase deals in Beverly Park North, told us that many of the domain’s homeowners are pouring tens of millions of dollars into extensive updates and upgrades to their existing mansions, which will eventually be reflected in sale prices. Add to that the exceptionally spacious and flat multi-acre lots, a hyper-vigilant 24/7 security detail, easy access to Beverly Hills and Century City, and convenient proximity to Van Nuys airport, which accommodates private jets. “It’s just a matter of time,” they optimistically declared, “until North Beverly Park achieves $2,500-3,000 per square foot.”

Even in L.A.’s currently electrified high-end marketplace, Beverly Park estates change hands infrequently, with only about half a dozen sales in the past three years. There are just two estates, both in the North section, currently listed on the open market: A five-acre-plus compound that belongs to tool-and-die tycoon Eric Smidt arrived in March with Coldwell Banker’s Linda May, carrying a $45 million pricetag. In July, Blankenship and Oliver listed for $25 million an approximately 12,500-square-foot quasi-Italianate villa that handbag designer-turned-real estate mogul Bruce Makowsky bought three years ago for $13.45 million.

Officially listed estates in Beverly Park are, however, just the tip of the real estate iceberg; surreptitiously shopped whisper listings are de riguer. While they were politely mum about the rumors we heard about the Makowsky villa being in escrow in the low $20 millions, Blankenship and Oliver did reveal that they also represent an off-market, 13,000-square-foot mansion formerly owned by “Real Housewives of Beverly Hills” cast member Adrienne Maloof, who sold it in fall 2012 for $19.5 million. The new owners, per the agents, have a $35 million asking price on the 8 bedroom and 10 bathroom spread that is also available to let short term at a mind-bending quarter-million dollars per month.

Although he also politely declined to confirm, deny or comment, we heard word from a well-connected tattletale that Altman can show, on the down low, one of the few contemporary mansions in Beverly Park, formerly owned by soft-porn purveyor Norm Zada — and last sold by Altman in late 2010 for $16.5 million — at a price somewhere north of $30 million.

Another plugged-in informant tattled that one of the two vacant lots in Beverly Park is available off-market, and that the owner has turned down offers between $25 million and $29 million, while another agent told us that last year, if you knew who to call, Mark Wahlberg would allow his then-still-under-construction 30,000-ish-square-foot chateau-style manse to be covertly toured with an asking price in the high $60 millions.

The lesson here, if it somehow wasn’t clear, is that every major player in the real estate game we chatted with thinks Beverly Park bargain-shoppers better get on the stick quick, lest they be faced with purchase prices past well past $40 million-$50 million. Don’t laugh. It’s probably gonna happen sooner than anyone thinks.

 

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  1. Michael Churchill says:

    Correct me if I am wrong, but hunks of junk in the Hollywood Hills, Sunset Strip, Bel-Air and Bird Streets way up the most treacherous one-way roads with all hillside and a pool for a non-backyard are being sold for more $$ than Beverly Park for just the dirt…to developers!!??? Your Mama, you make a good point. The market is just bananas and no area is safe!! It’s all about flat, buildable pads. If developers hit Beverly Park why wouldn’t it change the game for that area? I haven’t seen any major new developments/flips in that area so I guess time will tell. I’m just so tired of these 10,0000 sq ft “modern masterpieces” hanging over a cliff with a great view being marketed at $40,000,000+. Ridiculous!

  2. James Christy says:

    Prices in Beverly Park will lag behind the market long term, anyone who thinks they will fly to the moon is dreaming. The location is in Beverly Hills Post Office not the City of Beverly Hills so you have crappy LA City services and roads, hopefully it never rains because pothole-ville will be the new name. Second people want to be closer to the action and activity of the city, WEHO is blowing up, Hollywood is blowing up, Beverly Hills high end restaurant scene only gets better each year. Who wants to travel 20 minuets up a steep hill at night after a great meal at Craigs or a show or event in Beverly Hills. Convenience is what people pay for, wealthy people have lots money but not time, only places to consider would be Trousdale, Bird Streets, Beverly Hills Flats and above Sunset, Holmby Hills, Lower Bel Air. The other locations will go up but not as much. I always prefer Beverly Hills over all the rest just so I don’t have deal with LA City b.s., they take care of the residents like no other and that’s important when you have $10 million worth of art on your walls, or need to correct a situation, or have your thoughts heard by the mayor directly.

  3. WrteStufLA says:

    Wow. NEWSFLASH!– Beverly Park realtors warn that you need to be buying “Now, now, NOW!!

    Comparing Beverly Park properties to those in other nabes on a per-square-foot basis is absurd — these houses are gargantuan. Automatically assuming 20,000 square feet x $3,000/foot is a “correct” price point … ? Even in this Era of Oligarchs, at any one time there are only so many Buyers around who are able to spend $40MM+ on a house, and many (most?) don’t feel the need to purchase 10,000 more square feet than they need.

  4. Critic says:

    54 Beverly Park Way was renovated and is on the Realtor’s website as a pocket listing so….

    I think that Beverly Park prices will rise, though not as fast as they predict. I agree with Mama and several commentators, Beverly Park has its drawbacks. The location (up San Ysidro in BHPO with LA city services), lack of views and lack of any historic architecture (though Richard Manion tries his hardest) come to mind. However, Beverly Park does offer privacy, space and security. As they hopefully get more 90s spec homes renovated (Richard Manion’s redux of a French-ish home in South Beverly Park comes to mind), I think prices will continue to rise.

    • lil' gay boy says:

      I confess I was unfamiliar with Manion’s work. I see from his website that he got his degree at Columbia and worked for both Robert A.M. Stern and Venturi, Rauch and Scott Brown. If imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, then he’s full compliments; I see no less than three of his compositions that instantly reminded me of Gold Coast estates. A distinct international sensibility with an East Coast flavor; well done.

      I was always curious as to why there was a sprinkling of deft compositions amongst the dross of Beverly Park — you’ve solved it for me…thanks so much! But it begs the question; if Manion can do it so easily, why can’t Landry?

  5. Jamiekins says:

    The realtors that are optimistic about this area may be a tad over exuberant about it’s future. I do like a few of the homes that have extra property. After seeing a few of the homes sky rocket I understand that it is possible for that to happen however, given the amount of homes in the hills, as they say, that are in possession of some of those incredible views, I would probably opt for a home with a view. Holmby Hills is my personal favorite. Many of those homes do not possess a view, but I do think the homes have so much more character for the money. I did map the upper side and as I said there were a few that I thought were very nice. The architect’s didn’t wow me, due to the lack of their adroit skills in design.
    I’m just not sure that everyone would share the Realtor’s thought on how much it is going to rise.
    On the other hand in the last few months you have shown homes that went from $12.000.000 to
    $65.000.000 or more, and it has been more than a couple. But I always like to see a home. Making decisions about a home from photos or maps just really isn’t fair to a home. I am so pleased that you wrote about this area I have been curious about it for a long time.
    Love ya Mama !

  6. Nana says:

    Mama, when did you become a shill for the greedy agents? beverly park is outdated and just not cool anymore. please come back to us

  7. Watcher says:

    They’re all stucco and pre-cast concrete mansions from the 90’s-00’s.
    THATS why they don’t compare to Holmby and Trousdale.
    Land or not.

  8. Nana says:

    Beverly Park is so gross and vulgar. Not one house in the place has any architectural worth or future value. There’s a reason why 90% of the homes are owned by new-money tycoons.

  9. lil' gay boy says:

    It’s kinda sad; the enclave could have been so much more than it is. Although it lacks heart-stopping views, the privacy, security and ample lots seem a fair compensation.

    But much of the architecture is borderline and skates awfully close to ghastly; the handful of contemporaries in the development are, for the most part, “the exception that proves the rule”. Many of the houses Richard Landry himself did not design were sadly influenced by him; he never seems to quite reproduce or successfully reference the historical styles that are his chosen aesthetic — they always seem too tall, too wide, or just too much. Proof of the aphorism, “…just because you can, doesn’t mean you should…”

    Constructed with the ne plus ultra of materials, they should be more than they are but, alas, don’t quite gel — their impeccable execution keeps them from tipping off that slope into a vulgarity embodied by, say, a roadside diner called The Pompeii.

    Josh Altman? If I were on fire I wouldn’t believe him if he said I looked “…a tad warm…” Blankenship and Oliver are much more credible in their restraint.

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