Canadian gonzo journalist turned alt-media tycoon Shane Smith, co-founder and Executive Chairman of the millennially focused Vice Media empire, has listed the smaller of his two multi-million dollar homes in the laid-back Rustic Canyon area of Pacific Palisades, Calif., with a $4.495 million asking price and appears to have landed a buyer for his downtown New York City residence that came up for sale last year at $5.85 million.
The newly minted and audaciously bearded billionaire purchased the Rustic Canyon contemporary almost three years ago for $3.825 million. The property came up for rent in 2017 at $17,500 per month and the price was dropped to $15,500 per month before it was taken off the rental market just after the first of the year. Mostly out of view from the street behind a towering hedge that surrounds a front yard swimming pool and described in marketing materials as a “rustic-ranch” that makes use of “natural and organic elements throughout,” the two-story glass, concrete and wood pavilion packs in five bedrooms and four bathrooms in just over 2,600 square feet.
Rather than swing open, the front door unconventionally slides open to a long and slender combination living and dining room with charcoal-colored stone floor tiles, an austere white brick fireplace, a pitched ceiling and a combination of floor-to-ceiling and clerestory windows that fill the room with ambient light. Seemingly unchanged during Smith’s ownership, the kitchen has sand-colored countertops on simple, dark brown cabinetry, up-to-date stainless steel appliances and a huge window over the sink that tips thrillingly out over the yard. At least one main floor bedroom opens to a quiet terrace while the second floor master suite evokes the playful spirit of a tree house with gigantic windows that look out into a leafy tangle of surrounding treetops.
Smith and his wife, budding short film director Tamyka Smith, have long owned a cooperative apartment in downtown Manhattan’s swanky Tribeca neighborhood that they scooped up in two transactions, the first in 2009 and the second about three years later, that totaled $2.975 million. The now combined units, which together measure roughly 3,200 square feet, were put up for sale last fall at $5.85 million and online resources indicate the four-bedroom and 3.5-bathroom duplex is in contract to be sold to an unknown buyer for an unknown amount.
A key-lock elevator opens directly into a sprawling, open-plan living and entertaining area that is more than 30-feet wide and nearly 60-feet long with designated living and dining spaces plus a cozy TV lounge and a cook-friendly kitchen finished with a chic and practical mix of stainless steel and black granite countertops. Three guest bedrooms are clustered at the rear of the apartment, one is barely larger than a prison cell and the largest includes a closet-lined dressing corridor plus an en suite bathroom, while the master suite privately occupies the entire upper floor and comprises a dedicated office, a walk-in closet, a soaking tub cavalierly set at an angle in an open corner of the bedroom and a bifurcated bathroom with walls sheathed floor-to-ceiling in distinctive, fan-shaped black and white tiles.
The Smiths relocated from New York to Los Angeles sometime after the fall of 2015 when they paid a gasp-worthy $23 million for an elegant if down-on-her-heels 3.5-acre, 1930s Spanish Colonial estate on the Santa Monica side of Rustic Canyon that previously belonged to film director Henry Jaglom and actress/writer Victoria Foyt. In the fall of 2016, after a fairly quick but comprehensive refurbishment that included replacing the plumbing and electrical systems, the Smiths let The Wall Street Journal in for a peek and poke around that revealed the lavishly appointed main residence includes an “onyx-walled speakeasy bar” secreted behind a trick door and incorporates a snazzy and no doubt profoundly expensive selection of “handblown glass chandeliers from Venice,” “antique Persian rugs and various vintage French and Italian furnishings.”