A brand new, spec-built uber-modern mansion on a plum, celeb-pedigreed parcel high above Bel Air recently traded hands in a covert, off-market deal for the notable sum of $34.5 million — and the secretive, super-rich buyer, we first heard from Platinum Triangle real estate mover and shaker Peter Propertyseller, was Canadian pharmacy tycoon Daryl Katz. Though the rakishly maned Canuck tends to keep a fairly low profile for a prominent businessman with a fortune in excess of $3 billion, he was launched into the showbiz spotlight this spring when it was announced he’s gone into partnership with veteran producer Joel Silver to develop, produce and/or finance a full slate of feature films, television fare and digital content.
The 4.6-acre estate, owned for decades by Canadian-born television personality Art Linkletter, was last sold by the late Linkletter’s heirs in May 2012 for $10.6 million, and the buyer, per property records, was a corporate entity controlled, so the scuttlebutt goes, by Canadian businessman and property developer Francesco Aquilini. The residence, a sprawling 1950s modern of faded-but-spectacular mid-century splendor, was soon razed, and the in-demand services of the prolific, contemporary mansion specialists at McClean Design engaged to conjure a gigantic, glass-walled mansion. That manse is now endowed, according to the architect’s website and other online resources, with a glass-doored four-car garage, a free-standing all-glass wine-storage cabinet in the dining room, and a curved infinity-edge swimming pool. The property’s unusually high perch provides toe-curling views that sweep across and down the canyon, over Beverly Hills and, on a clear day, extend well beyond the Downtown skyline.
Katz, the not-entirely beloved owner of the Edmonton Oilers professional hockey team, unsurprisingly maintains a billionaire-style portfolio of private residences that our research suggests include, but may not be limited to: a 25,000-ish square-foot contemporary in his hometown of Edmonton, reported to have indoor and outdoor pools, plus a private ice hockey rink; a 6,000-plus square-foot penthouse in Vancouver; and a nearly 7,000-square-foot compound inside the guarded gates of the prestigious Bighorn golf and resort community in California’s Palm Desert.