We hear from Platinum Triangle real estate uber-insider Peter Propertyseller that Ben Affleck and Jennifer Garner have quietly — and not surprisingly, given their impending divorce — engaged the services of one of L.A.’s top brokers to surreptitiously shop their Hollywood-pedigreed compound in Pacific Palisades, with an asking price somewhere in the neighborhood of $45 million.
Peter also snitched that media scion Lachlan Murdoch, the newly appointed co-chairman of News Corp. and executive chairman of 21st Century Fox, went for a peep, but did not move forward with an offer.
The more than three-acre compound, privately situated down a long, gated, tree-lined and paparazzi-proof driveway, includes a multi-winged, ranch-style main residence designed and built by vaunted architect Cliff May in the late 1930s, and owned in the late 1940s and early 1950s by Gregory Peck. The estate, which occupies a private promontory that overlooks rustic Sullivan Canyon, was acquired in 1992 by uber-producer Brian Grazer, who originally asked more than $27 million for the property, but in the end sold to Affleck and Garner in March 2009 for $17.55 million.
Although they made extensive renovations over the years, at the time of the erstwhile couple’s purchase, the sprawling, single-level main residence had five bedrooms and eight bathrooms in about 8,800 square feet. A sizable secondary structure housed an office, art studio, gym and two bathrooms, while an extensive subterranean guesthouse contained two bedrooms, three bathrooms, an entertainment lounge and a state-of-the-art screening room. The estate’s many recreational amenities include a piazza-sized canyon-view terrace, a soccer-pitch-sized lawn, a half-court basketball court, and a swimming pool with open-air cabana.
Affleck, a two-time Oscar winner with at least a half-dozen projects in various stages of production, continues to own a riverfront estate with an elegant plantation-style mansion along a wide bend of Blackbeard Creek south of Savannah, Ga., that he bought in 2003 for a little bit more than $7 million.