After just two months and an avalanche of international publicity, polymath showbiz legend Robert Redford has sold his secluded Napa Valley wine country estate on the outskirts of St. Helena, Calif., for $7 million, about 7% below the $7.5 million asking price. The still prolific, octogenarian actor, director and producer acquired the picturesquely sylvan, not quite 10.5-acre estate in 2004 for an undisclosed amount and, as noted by the Napa Valley Register, the buyer is an Austin, Texas, based corporate entity linked to software executive Mark Friedman and residential and commercial interior designer Velvet Hammerschmidt, a three-time winner on the HGTV reality series “Designer’s Challenge.”
Redford, a 1981 Oscar winner in the Best Directing category for “Ordinary People” and a Golden Globe nominee in the Best Actor category for the 2018 biopic “The Old Man & the Gun,” which he also executive produced, and his wife, artist Sibylle Szaggars Redford, cheekily dubbed the property Danza del Sol, Spanish for Sundance. Secluded in the sylvan foothills north of downtown and nestled into a sun dappled clearing amid ancient oak trees, the casually elegant, white-stucco European-style manor house measures in at 5,225-square-feet with three bedrooms and 3.5 bathrooms.
The casually appointed “formal” living room features a uniquely tiled fireplace and three picture windows that frame a triptych view of the surrounding landscape; the dining room comfortably seats six around a rustic, raw-wood dining table; a cozy den/library offers floor-to-ceiling bookshelves with integrated media equipment; and, arranged around a center island with grey countertops on ordinary white cabinets, the updated if otherwise fairly generic kitchen is open to an informal dining area and family room anchored by massive stone fireplace. Two guest bedrooms share a bathroom on the upper floor while the main-floor master suite offers a private lounge with bow-fronted fireplace and floor-to-ceiling windows with terrace access plus a walk-in closet and a sauna-equipped bathroom.
Opening to tree-shaded dining and lounges terraces with serene, cross-valley views of the surrounding hills, the house sits atop sinuous river rock retaining walls above a swimming pool, spa and open-air poolside pavilion. The property additionally includes a 900-plus square-foot, one-bedroom and one-bathroom art studio with huge glass-paned garage doors that roll up to a flagstone patio plus a 500-square-foot detached garage with workshop/gym and a second detached garage of roughly 960-square-feet. The mostly wooded estate is laced with walking and hiking trails, including a private path to the adjoining Meadowood golf and wellness resort.
Redford, who told The Wall Street Journal last year he plans to buy a home closer to San Francisco to be nearer family, has long and famously maintained a Rocky Mountain ranch property in Sundance, Utah, where in the early 1970s he founded the Sundance Mountain Resort and the following decade created the non-profit Sundance Institute to support the growth of independent artists. In the late 1980s, the property was featured in Architectural Digest where the main residence was described as “a plant-filled solar house built in the seventies of wood, glass, and fieldstone” filled with an extensive collection of contemporary Native American art.
Listing photos: Pacific Union / Compass