BUYERS: Michael Strahan and Nicole Mitchell Murphy
LOCATION: Los Angeles, CA
SIZE: 15,600 square feet, 9 bedrooms, 11 full and 3 half bathrooms
YOUR MAMAS NOTES: In case any of y’all celebrity real estate-o-philes haven’t heard, retired professional pigskinner turned turned wildly popular morning chat show host Michael Strahan—he took over for Regis Philbin in the fall of 2012—and his long-time fiancée Nicole Mitchell Murphy—she’s a former model, reality television denizen, and the ex-wife of Eddie Murphy—have been on a serious real estate whirligig the last few years.
In April 2011, after a four year long slog, Miz Mitchell Murphy finally unloaded a 9,200 square foot Spanish-y mansion in the guard-gated Oaks community in Calabasas, CA for $5,515,000, a pocketbook plundering two million dollar loss against the $7.5 million she paid for the place in 2006.*
In November 2009, not long after he and Miz Mitchell Murphy were engaged, property records show the gap-toothed former defensive end shelled out $5 million for a 10,000-ish square foot faux-Tuscan macmansion in L.A.’s tony Brentwood area that he/they sold in March 2012 for $6,150,000.
A few months later the couple coughed up $7.9 million for a 1926 Mediterranean tear down in the super-prime lower Bel Air area. It’s not clear if Mister Strahan and/or Miz Mitchell Murphy ever moved in—we think not—but what is clear is that they flipped the property less than a year later for $11 million in an off-market deal to mid-priced handbag mogul and bone fide real estate baller Bruce Makowsky for $11 million. (Mister Makowsky, according to the sorts of sources who know these sorts of things, razed the residence.)
Since Mister Strahan tapes Live! With Kelly and Michael in New York City it’s no surprise he and his betrothed have peeped some spacious and immoderately expensive apartments for them and however many of their combined nine children—she has five children with her ex-husband and he has four, two from each of his previous two wives—live with them. So the gossip goes, the couple recently looked at but passed on a 5,500 square foot, multi-winged duplex penthouse on the Upper West Side that was previously toured by actor Bradley Cooper and is currently listed at $20,000,000, reduced from $24.9 million and down considerably from its original asking price of $29 million.
Back on the west coast, as per celebrity gossip juggernaut TMZ, the couple lease an opulent, Neo-classical/semi-Italian villa in Beverly Hill’s guard-gated and (in)famously ostentatious Beverly Park enclave. The house is owned, as it turns out, by none other than the aforementioned purse pasha Bruce Makowsky who owns at least two other mansions in Beverly Park. However, hunties, the unmarried couple will soon decamp Beverly Park and head back to Brentwood where they are—according to our impossibly well-connected informant Peter Propertyseller—in contract to acquire a big and brand new residential behemoth listed with a fat $17 million price tag.**
Listing details show the freshly finished, 15,600 square foot center hall neo-Colonial style mansion, tightly wedged onto a walled, double-gated, and high-hedged shy acre that backs up to a thickly treed ravine, was designed by Harvard educated, CalArts-trained, and Santa Monica-based residential architect Winston Brock Chappell. There are, as per digital marketing materials, 9 bedroom suites and a total of 11 full and three half bathrooms on three luxuriously-appointed and elevator-serviced floors.
Guests are surely meant to be impressed into silence and awe by the cavernous foyer and voluminous adjoining formal living room that both have 20-foot boxed wood ceilings, black glass chandeliers, and French white oak floors stained a deep and dark chocolate. Main floor spaces also include a roomy but hardly huge formal dining room (below, top), a compact den with built-in entertainment center (above, lower right), and a fully-paneled library with flat-screen surmounted fireplace and French doors. The bodily evacuation and maquillage reapplication needs of guests are accommodated in a pair of convenient, party-friendly powder rooms. Somewhere there are, as per listing details, two guest/family bedrooms with private bathrooms on the main floor.
Less formal, main floor family quarters orbit around an open-concept great room comprised of an informal dining area that overlooks and opens to the back yard, a fireplace anchored family room, and an all-white center island kitchen fitted and kitted with snow white cabinetry, slab marble counter tops, and top-quality appliances.
The fully-finished basement offers two more bedrooms (suitable for less-favored family members, guests or live-in domestic staff) plus a windowless lounge area. Other basement-level creature comforts include: a windowless game room with billiard and poker tables; an also windowless 20-seat screening room with tiered seating and a 15-foot screen; a fitness room with attached bathroom, dry sauna, and steam room; and a 1000-bottle temperature-controlled wine cellar and tasting room equipped—like the paneled library upstairs—with a costly air filtration system for efficient removal of cigar (and other) smoke. Other notable features in the basement designed to impress and entice the rich and/or famous are a cedar-lined storage room for furs, gowns, and tuxedos as well as a separate walk-in safe for cash, jewels, and other valuable.
The upper level master suite occupies a wing of its own with separate sitting room, a vaulted ceiling and fireplace in the bedroom, a private terrace, and dual walk-in closets and bathrooms, at least one of which as a free-standing soaking tub and direct access tot he pergola-shaded private terrace that overlooks the backyard and thickly treed canyon behind. Four more guest/family bedrooms on the upper level each have private bathrooms and walk-in closets and there are, as per digital marketing materials, two additional guest/family bedrooms on the main floor.
The usable, flat area of the back yard isn’t particularly large for a home of this magnitude and expense but it is jam packed with mansion-type amenities: deep, stone-tiled verandas; a long and narrow patch of grass that wraps around the side of the house; a 59-foot long swimming pool and inset spa; and an open-air pavilion replete with pool bath, fireplace, wet bar, integrated ceiling heaters, and an outdoor kitchen/barbecue set up.
*F.Y.I., the non-celeb buyer caught a classic and an almost immediate case of The Real Estate Fickle and sold the six bedroom residence a year later for $6.5 million to douchey, Lambo-driving rapscallion, Justin Bieber.
**Peter Propertyseller told Your Mama that he heard through the Platinum Triangle property gossip grapevine the deal was going down for $16 million but the transaction has yet to be completed and/or recorded so the sale price—and the actual transaction itself—are still just some good ol’ fashioned celebrity real estate rumor and gossip, at least until you read about it in one of the more respectable property gossip columns.
listing photos: The Agency