SELLER: Virginia Madsen
LOCATION: Thousand Oaks, CA
SIZE: 3,691 square feet, 4 bedrooms, 4.5 bathrooms
YOUR MAMAS NOTES: We have a lovely fella we’ll call Missy Hoo Hoo to thank for the kindly communique that informed Your Mama that Oscar-nominated actress Virginia Madsen has her reasonably spacious if fairly ordinary tract house inside the guarded gates of the Rancho Conejo development in affluent Thousand Oaks, CA, on the market with a $1,088,000 asking price.*
Miz Madsen, in case some of the younger children don’t know, has shaken her Showbiz money maker in Hollywood since the mid-1980s but didn’t reach her to-date professional salad days until 2004 when she was nominated for an Academy Award for her quirky turn as a waitress in the low budget and much ballyhooed film Sideways. While the Oscar nod—she was also nominated for a Golden Globe—didn’t catapult her to superstar leading lady status, she has worked steadily ever since. There have been numerous television programs (Justice League, Monk, Scoundrels, Witches of East End), a fair number of movies (The Number 23, The Haunting in Connecticut), and a bevy of television movies (Anna Nicole, Hatfields & McCoys). As per her resume on the Internet Movie Data Base, she has lead roles in at least four movies currently in one stage of production or another.
Property records show Miz Madsen acquired herThousand Oaks abode in November 2005 for $1,351,000. A couple of quick calculations on our bejeweled abacus shows that even if her young and scruffy-chinned real estate agent manages to coax a full price offer, his Tinseltown client still faces a hardly inconsequential $263,000 loss, not counting carrying costs, improvement expenses and real estate fees.
Current listing details show the two-story house was built in 2004 and backs up to a public park that Your Mama imagines could get loud with screaming children at least every now and then. There are four bedrooms, 4.5 bathrooms and a garaging for three cars in two bays, both with direct access to the house. Your Mama isn’t an educated expert so we really can’t be sure what blend of architectural styles are present here but there’s plenty of used red brick veneer applied to the exterior’s lower level and there’s a whole lotta quintessentially tan stucco on the upper level. Some of the vinyl-framed windows have (probably faux) shutters, the roof’s edges are lined with brown clay tiles, and there’s a minuscule, second floor veranda that overlooks the red brick driveway.
Inside, listing photos suggest Miz Madsen has an unrestrained passion that borders on an addiction to elaborate wall treatments. In the narrow entrance hall and unexpectedly voluminous, double-height formal dining room the walls are slathered in a questionable, duo tone crosshatched situation that looks a little like an over-scaled linen pattern. Beige, natural stone tiles the in front hall and dining room switch to mahogany-toned wood with a semi-gloss treatment in the “formal” living room where we can’t not notice the at least as equally labor intensive—and probably more questionable—bronze toned paint treatment on the walls and the ceiling.**
Around the backside of the staircase in the formal dining room the an eat-in center island kitchen has faux-aged raised panel cabinetry, speckled tan granite counter tops, high quality appliances and—you got it, Tea Cups and Tiddlywinks—a hand-applied custom faux-paint treatment. The kitchen opens into a family room with television surmounted gas fireplace, plantation shuttered windows and doors to the backyard, and even more of the same buttery colored paint treatment as in the kitchen. Inexplicably and much to the chagrin of Feng Shui experts and aficionados around the world, the floor in the family room is partly done with a natural stone tile and partly with wood, or some of that new-fangled porcelain tile that looks like wood.
Honestly, children, Your Mama never thought we’d have to make a hard and fast rule about this but all but Rule No. 187 in Your Mama’s Big Book of Decoratin’ Dos and Don’ts now avers with laser sharp self-righteousness that, “A single room in a well-dressed residence shall not have more than one floor material installed at the same time. It’s confusing and unnecessary and, functional as it may be in any given circumstance, it just looks like shit. It does and y’all know it does, too.” Talk about needing a goddamn nerve pill. Pleeze.
Along with the discrete power room, one of the three guest/family bedrooms is tucked back into a private corner of the house were it has direct access to a private bathroom. Two more guest/family bedrooms on the second floor each also have an en suite pooper. Double doors*** lead into the master bedroom where—in our humble and meaningless opinion—the taupe-toned shag wall-to-wall carpeting clashes angrily with the haute-glammy silver-leaf treatment applied to the walls. French doors open to a private balcony with park and sunset views and there’s a an L-shaped walk-in closet off the spacious if entirely beige bathroom that’s outfitted with twin sinks, a jetted garden tub and separate shower stall. The upper floor is finished with a spacious secondary family room and a sink-equipped laundry room.
As in many upscale housing developments from coast to coast in the United States, Miz Madsen’s Thousand Oaks’ backyard is unquestionably compact. It’s barely bigger than a decent sized courtyard, really. But it is carefully outfitted with a narrow strip of flag stone terracing, a plunge-sized salt water swimming pool and raised spa that comfortably seats eight, and a vine-draped and curtain-hung pergola that shades a seating area around a built-in fire pit. The property backs directly up to a publicly accessible park with tennis courts, soccer pitch, a couple of softball/baseball diamonds, and a children’s playground.
We freely confess that we haven’t a clue where Miz Madsen plans to decamp not that her Thousand Oaks home is about to be sold. It’s possible, if somewhat unlikely seeming, she’ll hole up in the three bedroom and three bathroom condo in the western end of West Hollywood that property records reveal she picked up in 2006 for $860,000 and appears to co-own with her mother. But we sorta doubt it.
*As of today, online listings indicate the property is deep in escrow with an unknown buyer at an unknown price.
**Do not even ask, children, because we will not go there over all the chocolate brown contempo-style furnishings Miz Madsen done shoved up in her bronze-toned formal living room. Your Mama is plum out of nerve pills and we simply can not tolerate those wacky-footed abominations another second without needing at least two pills and a gin and tonic chaser, extra lime, please and thank you.
***Double door entries to master bedrooms in suburban tract homes are another of Your Mama’s many pet peeves. Aren’t double doored master bedrooms, after all, just a cliché of tract house design meant to invoke a false sense of grandeur? No? Yes? Are we just being snobby? Anyways…
listing photos: Coldwell Banker