Fresh off selling his legendary Beverly Hills estate to Jeff Bezos for a California record $165 million, multibillionaire mogul David Geffen has opted to downsize his living circumstances, in a manner of speaking, by purchasing a nearby compound that also boasts Old Hollywood ties.
The Los Angeles Times first reported rumors of the impending transaction, and now sources say the deal is essentially done. The discounted sale price, believed to be approximately $62 million, is significantly under the last $82.5 million ask and barely half of the optimistic $125 million pricetag the property initially sported, way back in fall 2018. Still, the deal ranks among the priciest transactions ever inked in the city of Beverly Hills.
The 3.3-acre property lies on a knoll just north of Sunset Boulevard, and consists of three contiguous parcels, one formerly owned by Frank Sinatra and the other two by Hollywood mogul Lew Wasserman, who lived for decades in a midcentury modern home on the property. Today, however, those houses are long gone and a new, much larger contemporary mansion has claimed their perch.
The estate’s seller was Tinseltown scion Casey Wasserman, Lew’s grandson and principal heir, and the chairman of the Los Angeles 2028 Olympic committee. Wasserman acquired the estate in the early aughts, razed his grandfather’s home, and hired Pritzker Prize-winning architect Richard Meier to design a large house with all the modern gadgets today’s billionaire homebuyers desire.
The resulting home, completed in 2016, is a starkly austere structure hewn from wood, glass, stone and metal, and spans more than 18,000 square feet, with six bedrooms and a total of 16 bathrooms. There’s a four-car garage and a substantial motorcourt for large events. Through the estate’s many trees, there are peek-a-boo views of the Downtown L.A. and Century City skylines, along with a substantial swathe of the L.A. basin.
Inside, the blocky house is rigidly contemporary, with clean lines and atrium-like living spaces. A great room offers disappearing walls of glass that allow access to a sprawling lawn, dissolving the barrier between the indoors and out. In the backyard, there’s an 85-foot infinity pool and an adjacent poolhouse.
Some of the home’s more notable amenities include an elevator, automated steel-and-glass doors, an art studio, a gym and a screening room. There was also an attempt to mitigate the property’s substantial carbon footprint, with geothermal system for heating and cooling needs, plus a generator for power outages.
Besides the new Beverly Hills house, Geffen owns a vast array of other residences, including a $54 million penthouse on Manhattan’s Fifth Avenue and a $70 million estate in the Hamptons. But his most famous home is undoubtedly the Rising Sun, a $590 million, 453 ft. superyacht where he’s spent much of the last few months self-isolating since the initial coronavirus outbreak, and where he regularly entertains scores of famous friends.
Note: Property records now show that the recorded sale price was $65 million, rather than the rumored $62 million that was originally reported.