Thursday, November 27, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving!



Wishing Everyone a Happy Thanksgiving


from our house to yours!!!


joni & ben webb


georgie & sammie jo


Wednesday, November 26, 2008

The Beige Bisno Behemoth in Beverly Park

SELLER: Robert Bisno
LOCATION: Beverly Park Circle, Beverly Hills, CA
PRICE: $29,500,000
SIZE: 16,800 square feet (approx.), 5 bedrooms, 9 bathrooms
DESCRIPTION: Fabulous estate on over five lush acres. Magnificent entry. Luxurious master suite w/ exquisite his/her master bath, adjoining gym & spa. Features a media room, piano room & wood paneled, two-story office, elevator. Brand new, brick-lined wine cellar w/ its own dining and living areas. Glorious kitchen that leads out to a meticulously manicured rose garden, a gorgeous pool & step-down tennis court. Outdoor cabana w/ expansive living area, bar & bath. Private walking paths throughout the property.

YOUR MAMAS NOTES: While normally we focus on the homes of celebrity types, we're going to branch out just a bit this morning and talk about a huge house recently listed for sale in Beverly Park, the grandiose grand daddy of luxury gated communities in southern California. The mansion, owned by controversial and prolific property developer Robert Bisno and one of six Beverly Park palaces currently on the open market, has popped up with an asking price of $29,500,000.

Some of the children will recall that back in the Spring of 2008 Your Mama has discussed this mammoth mansion on several previous occasions because there was a bit of brouhaha about the opulent property coming thisclose to being foreclosed...a very rare thing along the rarefied and ridiculously rich streets of Beverly Hills.

Although it would seem that big biznessman Bisno managed to pull his large and lavish home from the angry and gaping maw of foreclosure, he's decided to sell the extremely expensive to maintain property which records and listing information reveals measures in at approximately 16,800 square feet and sits on a five-plus acre lot. Sixteen thousand square feet may be the size of damn boo-teek hotel, however, it is hardly one of the larger houses in Beverly Park where really rich real estate size queens go to gloat and strut their deep pockets in a peacockian display meant to impress, well, everybody.

Listing information indicates the Bisno residence has five bedrooms and nine bathrooms including a master bedroom bigger than most houses that features dual master bathrooms, gargantuan walk in closets, and an adjoining gym and spa. Even though we don't like the overall day-core in the master bedroom we are totally and completely in love with that gildeda nd gorgeously campy four poster bed. It's truly horrible, but we could work that shit out.

Other features, according to listing information, are a double height living room done up in all manner of beige and champagne colored furniture and a mostly brown dining room for 12 or more with an intricately carved ceiling that looks like it might have been imported from some old castle somewhere. The two-story paneled office/library includes floor to ceiling book cases filled with books that don't even look like they're real (they may be, they just don't look like it to our untrained eye). The gore-may kitchen features a breakfast room, all the refrigerators, ovens and warming drawers a private chef might require, and the largest and most dangerous copper pot laden pot rack Your Mama has ever had the misfortune of laying our beady little eyes on. Sitting in those hideous armchairs at that breakfast bar is taking your life into your own hands and we do not recommend eating toast or pancakes or anything else while sitting there unless you are wearing a damn football helmet and you have all your life insurance in order.

Other rooms include a grand entrance hall with a swooping staircase, a piano room, den, a lackluster family room with even more champagne colored divans, a beige media room with beige recliners and beige carpeting, and somewhere–rather surprisingly–is a room devoted entirely to a ping pong table. We've never seen this particular quirk before and we really and truly do not know how to process that information.

On the lower floor, the Bisno's have installed a brick lined wine cellar that includes a large game room, a small tasting room as well as its own living room and dining rooms. All the well to do winos of the world will love the basement rooms so that they can can always be comfortable and within safe staggering distance of their high priced wines and spirits. And too, they'll appreciate the elevator to whisk their boozy butts all the way up to the second floor bedrooms.

The extensively landscaped and meticulously maintained grounds include a very green and long lawn that probably costs as much to maintain every year as it does to buy a Mercedes, a long swimmers pool and spa with an adjacent pool house and bath, and a sunken tennis court for which Your Mama and the Dr. Cooter would kill to have in our own, much smaller backyard.

Listen children, other than the tennis court, the dee-voonly ridiculous bed in the master bedroom and the extensive wine cellar there's really little here that we can honestly swoon about. We certainly prefer to live with much more color around us (what is it with very rich people and their beige day-core?), we have far more contemporary taste in furniture and art than we see up in this mansion, and we'd sooner live in a cardboard box than be subjected to the obvious dangers of that leviathan pot rack. However, this is clearly how many of the super rich residents all over Los Angeles like to live as is evidenced by the many (MANY) other mansions we've discussed with very expensive but atrociously banal and beige day-core. Our decorative cries and pleas will surely go unheard and unheeded and that's just fine. Everyone has a right to live any way they want.

Other bonuses of living in Beverly Park are the guarded gates, the smug knowledge that everyone around you is impossibly rich, the private (and heavily armed) private security that patrol the wide and empty streets 24/7, and a private play park for the kids which we're told is NEVER used since everyone in Bev Park has the space and means to provide their youngins with private back yard play grounds. Plus, if you act quickly, you might be lucky enough to have that diminutive musician Prince–who currently leases one of the mega-mansions in Beverly Park–come ringing your bell and knocking on your elaborately carved door with the latest issue of Awake and a few words of whispered religious wisdom.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Guilty Pleasure #1: Goodbye Columbus




In the spring of 1969, when I was 14, my entire family – including aunts, uncles and cousins - descended in masse on the downtown movie theatre to see the just released movie, Goodbye Columbus, based on Philip Roth’s first novella.  Filmed mainly in Westchester County, New York – the movie tells the story of a spoiled, Jewish princess, Brenda, and her summer romance with Neil, the  poor, unambitious librarian from the Bronx.   I suppose the movie was a family event because it was about a contemporary Jewish family – which very few movies were.  Probably every Jewish family saw this film in 1969 – news of it quickly spread in our community.  I remember the older members of my family being very disappointed by the brief nudity and the wedding scene which is a basically a caricature of a vulgar, over-the-top extravaganza.    And my mother was especially turned off by the way Brenda’s father lectured her:  “You have given me a lot of nachas, a lot of joy.  For a million dollars, nobody could buy that joy.  So, when you go back to school and you’re shivering, go to the store and buy yourself a nice leather coat with a fur collar.”  Mom felt that he should have said “Pick up the telephone and call me” rather than use money to buy her love.    This was exactly 40 years ago – and I remember this conversation with my mother like it was yesterday.



The Westchester County Jewish Country Club


Truth be told, unlike the older relatives, I adored the movie – and so did all of my friends.  I didn’t mind the brief nudity or the scandalous story line of premarital  sex.   Instead,  I liked to imagine that maybe one morning I would wake up and be living Brenda’s privileged life.   Brenda, played by Ali McGraw in her first movie role, was gorgeous – tall, tan, and thin.  Her wardrobe was designed by The Villager, which was our Anthropologie.   The musical score was by The Association and all of us had the sound tract, which we played over and over, especially the song “Groovy Just Being Together.” Hey, this WAS the 60’s!!!!   My friends and I went back to see the movie a few more times, without our parents,  and secretly I think we all wished we were Brenda Patimkin, the athletic,  wealthy and slightly rebellious Radcliffe girl.   Although, to be sure,  none of us ever wanted Richard Benjamin - who played Neil Klugman - as a boyfriend!  We all thought Benjamin, also starring in his first starring role, was not cute enough to ever land someone as adorable as Ali McGraw!  And to this day, I still think he was terribly miscast in the role.



The beautiful Ali McGraw in her debut movie performance.  Playing a freshman at Radcliffe, she was actually 30 years old at the time.


But, of course, as usual I had another reason than my friends why I loved the movie – the Patimkins lived in a beautiful, old, three story Colonial Revival house in Westchester County.  It was traditional, classic, and totally WASPy, not at all like the Mid Century Modern type houses that most of us lived in at that time.   No – this was the type of house that the gentiles in River Oaks lived in – not Jewish people from Meyerland!!  The fantasy of living in the multi-storied house probably intrigued me more than the movie.   The house was actually four stories – it had a basement that was fully furnished for pool-table games and shindigs.   Houston doesn’t have basements, so the Patimkin’s rec room seemed very mysterious and alluring.   The house loomed over the movie like a character.   The scenes around the dinner table were lengthy and legendary.  The entrance hall, with its gorgeous Georgian stairway, was the setting for much important dialogue.  The lush, green grounds of the property were as grand as the interiors.  And of course, Brenda’s bedroom – which the house guest, boyfriend Neil Klugman, would sneak into every night – was a teenaged girl’s dream.  



Brenda’s clothes came from The Villager.  At the time, his outfit was a favorite of mine – midriff baring,  red and white striped t and white jeans.  


I hadn’t seen Goodbye Columbus  in years and years and years and one night it came to me that my teenage daughter might love it as much as I had – so we rented it.    She watched about 30 minutes of it  and then left to go get on her computer.   I can’t say I blamed her -  it doesn’t hold up well with time – the endless montage sequences, slow motion and out of focus,  is the dated cinematography style of the 60s and 70s.  And, the then shocking nudity is banal – more skin is seen on primetime television today.  The love story too, once so taboo – a college girl having premarital sex with her boyfriend – is today considered almost commonplace.    And although Ali McGraw still looks beautiful and is adorably dressed, forty years later, Richard Benjamin is even less attractive or desirable as the lover.




A lot of the movie action centered around the country club – with endless montages of soft-focused underwater swimming.


Amazingly though, the Patimkin’s grand house, lived up to my memories.  It is still the classic, WASPy mansion that I once dreamed about.    In fact, with a few cosmetic and surface changes, I would still be very happy living there today, albiet, with my own teenaged Brenda  (as long as she wasn’t sneaking a boy - especially one as ugly as Neil ! -  into her bedroom at night.)  This is one major change that 40 years has brought – I am no longer the rebellious teenager who related to Brenda, but instead, now I am the mother worrying about her daughter’s boyfriend, just like Brenda Patimkin’s mother did.   


Below, enjoy a few pictures from the Patimkin’s Westchester house:



The large, white, Colonial Revival house, with its bright red shutters, starred in the movie.   The wide center hall bisects the house – the dining room is on the left side, facing the back yard.   On the far left, in what looks like an addition, is the kitchen which is not seen in the movie.   On the extreme right is the covered porch, where an important scene was filmed.  Neil Klugman drives the blue convertible.    The house is actually four stories counting the attic and the finished basement. 



Close up of the red front door with it’s brass knocker and lanterns.   If you look closely, you can see the Mezuzah, the religious symbol that all Jews put on their doorpost – as commanded by God.



The very first glimpse into the house – the center hall features prominently in the movie.   The wallpaper is Near Eastern influenced and runs up through the second story landing and hall.  The room open on the left is the dining room.  A large brass lantern hangs in the stairway, while a crystal chandelier hangs above the front door. 



The Oriental-inspired, over-sized, dining room is where two major scenes were filmed.  The walls are painted gray, with red chinoiserie wallpaper inset within the molding.  The curtains are sheers with fabric swags.  The same fabric covers the chairs which are Chippendale styled and painted chartreuse.   A large crystal chandelier is hanging here and crystal sconces are placed around room. 



Mrs. Klugman, a nouveau riche snob, is not too thrilled with Brenda’s new beau – a public library worker who lives in the Bronx.  The movie’s theme deals with the struggle between the two classes of Jews.   As for the house:    Here you can see the large Chippendale cabinet, filled with oriental celadon and Rose Medallion porcelains. 



On the left is a rather tacky red chinoiserie chest with gilding.  A large seltzer water bottle is set on the table.  I grew up with such a seltzer water bottle – which was always  placed on the  dinner  table, just like this!



Behind Neil and Brenda is a large, carved Oriental screen that hides the door to the kitchen. 



During dinner, Brenda scandalously puts her hand on Neil’s thigh, causing him to totally lose his composure!  It seems so mild by today’s standards.



Brenda’s older brother and younger sister.  Here you can see the red chinoiserie wallpaper more clearly.  Why there are pink roses in this room is a mystery.



With the family mostly gone from the dinner table, you can see the ornateness of the dining room more clearly – the oriental rug ties all the colors together, the marble fireplace with it’s folding, brass peacock screen (remember those!!??), the large crystal chandelier and sconces.  And lastly – there is a window AC unit behind Neil.   This fancy dining room is starkly contrasted with Neil’s own dining room in the Bronx apartment he shares with his aunt and uncle.



The homey Bronx dining room where Neil is more accustomed to eating – not quite as fancy!  Love his Aunt’s apron – my own aunt used have aprons just like this.



The beautiful side yard of the Patimkin’s property.   Here you can see the side covered porch that leads off the living room.



The covered porch with it’s assortment of white iron furniture, covered in pink fabric – why pink, when red is the accent color?  Mrs. Patimkin is trying very hard to be cordial to the new boyfriend from the Bronx – the very same neighborhood the Patimkin's escaped from as soon as they had accumulated enough wealth.



The expansive front yard with its circular drive.    A large round fountain sits right in the middle of all the cars.



The front hall with its Near Eastern inspired gold and lavender colored shiny wallpaper.  The door with its fan and side lights is classically styled, as is the flooring  of white marble with black marble insets.  The furniture, though, is faux antique – heavily gilded – exactly the type of furniture one  would buy to impress.  A crystal chandelier and sconces further dress up the entry hall.  At the base of the stairway, a tall marble pedestal holds a bronze statue lighting fixture.




The staircase is carpeted in green!  uggh!  Wood treads with a runner would be so much more attractive, but remember the 60s and 70s were the height of wall to wall carpeting.  At the top of the landing is a beautiful arched window flanked by gilded mirrors.  The large, brass lantern hangs down the three floors.



The master bedroom is shown in several humorous scenes.  The room is wallpapered in a floral pattern above the chair rail.  Also in the room is a fancy white and gilded fireplace with crystal sconces and mirror.   Bronze statues on gilded sconces flank the fireplace.



Oy!  The headboard is a Venetian disaster!  I love how  Mrs. Pitimkin with curlers in her hair is smoking in bed.  Hair nets and smoking in bed are really things of the past.    The purple and white sheets are covered with a green velour blanket – remember velour blankets?!?



This second night – this time the blanket and sheets are blue.   The cigarette and rollers are missing tonight.  But what is with that childish pink bow?



The basement “rec”room.   Knotty pine paneling, wagon wheel built- in decor, ping-pong table, leopard print, and black and white checkerboard floor.  The bar is incredibly stocked with every liquor imaginable.



The overflowing, “extra” refrigerator – the excess was impossible for Neil to resist.  Notice the old design on the can of Coke and the Diet Rite Cola.  When the refrigerator opened to all that fruit – the audience gasped.



The second floor landing – off the bedroom hall  You can really see the thickness of the beautiful wood banister here.  The stairs on the right lead up the third floor.  Three floors really impressed me as a young girl – I had only ever lived in a one story house.   Notice the pretty black tole sconce on the wall.  Also, all the plugs in the house are covered with brass switch plates. 



A close up of the beautiful stair railing with its three styles of carved spindles.  The gold phone is priceless!



Notice above Neil’s head, you can see the third floor steps – each tread is individually carved.  This stair hall is really a beautiful one with all the richness of the details:    the landings, the arched window, the turned spindles, the carved handrail.  Just the grand size of the stair hall is notable, and rarely seen in most homes, even large ones.



Brenda and Neil saw two movies that summer – here Rosemary’s Baby.



And next, The Odd Couple.  Ironically, soon after Jack Klugman who plays Mr. Patimkin would star in the TV series of The Odd Couple.




The third floor, or the attic, was filled with furniture from “when we were poor” Brenda tells Neil, after a fight with her mother.  Attics like this, with windows, finished floors and headroom, have always fascinated me and this scene really made an impression on me when I first saw the movie – the hidden treasures that were waiting to be found  there! 




Brenda’s cute 60’s style bedroom saw lots of action, of course.  After Neil is invited to be a houseguest during Brenda’s last two weeks at home – each night he sneaks into her bedroom behind her parents’ back.  By today’s standards – the parents would probably allow the boyfriend to share the room with their college aged girl.    At the time, this was such a scandalous situation – a it made my elder relatives very uncomfortable to watch.   The bedroom is wallpapered in a bright yellow and orange floral pattern.   The curtains are white with yellow trim and the sheers have a cute daisy pattern sewn into them.  Notice her “Trimline” telephone – this was the hugely popular telephone model that was introduced to the market just three years prior. 



A classic shot from the movie – with Neil’s face in the vanity mirror. 




In Brenda’s private bathroom, the gold damask wallpaper blends in with her bedroom’s wallpaper.  I love the vanity lights – the base of each bulb  appears to be some type of  chandelier or lamp part. 



One more shot of Brenda’s bedroom  - here you can see the twin arches – one is her bookcase, the other is her vanity/desk.  The carpet is the original, dreaded  shag wall to wall.  Today, shag carpet is called “frieze.”    Here Brenda and Neil are fighting over the fact that Brenda’s has not been using birth control! 



This is the only shot of the living area or family room with it’s mod covered sofa:  bright Kelly green with chrysanthemums.    I’ve always wished they showed more of the living room than just this one shot.



The blue wallpapered guest room where Neil pretended to spend the night.   Behind Brenda’s brother are the back stairs that lead up to the attic where all the old furniture is stored.The guest room is wallpapered in a blue and white pattern.   The furniture in this room is a bedroom suite called French Provencal.   Growing up, I had a set like this – white with gilding – as did most girls I knew.    Remember bedroom suites – matching nightstands, headboards, and dressers?  Tufted fabric headboards are actually in vogue right now.  The bed has a fitted bedspread with a scalloped edged, lined with trim.  A check fabric is used for the curtains and the dust ruffle. 



A scene from Brenda’s brother’s controversial wedding.  Most Jewish movie goers  were offended by the portrayal of this wedding where guests were seen stuffing their faces with food, rudely cutting in the buffet line and just acting obnoxious.  Apparently, when the head of the studio, Robert Evans (and Ali McGraw’s husband) saw an early cut of the wedding scene, he objected that it wasn’t “ethnic” enough.  The director then recut the scene – adding more offensive footage  into the movie.



The scene my mother most objected to.  At the wedding reception, Mr. Patimkin lectures Brenda about being a good, moral daughter that he is very proud of:  “You have given me a lot of nachas, a lot of joy.  For a million dollars, nobody could buy that joy.  So, when you go back to school and you’re shivering, go to the store and buy yourself a nice leather coat with a fur collar.” My mother felt he should have told her to either call or come home.   Brenda, is feeling quite guilty here, knowing she’s been having sex behind her parents’ back and if her father knew, he would not be so proud of her.    Oh, the pathos!



The riotous wedding reception.  Forty years later – it seems more tame, farcical, and extremely dated.  This time around, I certainly wasn’t offended watching it as no one I know acts like that at a wedding!    I don’t know where this scene was filmed, but I suspect it may be the country club, which was the setting for many scenes in the movie. 



The End:  Brenda goes back to Radcliffe and leaves her birth control at home which her mother promptly discovers.  Feeling too guilty to ever bring Neil home again – she ends the relationship.   Neil, of course, doesn’t understand why she left her birth control at home and realizes Brenda did it to end the relationship proving that the privileged Westchester girl would never marry the poor Bronx boy.   Today, this class struggle – the divide between upper and lower class Jews seems comical and very unrealistic and would never be an issue today.  In fact, I’m not even sure such a class divide even exists at all.   This scene is set in what is supposed to be a sleazy motel, but the wallpaper is a charming Prince of Wales feather type and the chest looks like the most authentic antique in the entire movie!




I hope you enjoyed looking back at one of my favorite movie houses from my teenaged years.  What is your favorite teenaged movie?  Is there a house in it that made it a favorite?  Did you ever see Goodbye Columbus – and if so – did you have the same positive feelings to the house as I did?

UPDATE: Nic Cage

Okay children, we too thought we were done discussing Mister Nic Cage and his great real estate sell off, but thanks to a generous and thoughtful source we'll call Mister Wingwang we now have better (and more) photos of and a floor plan for the Olympic Tower apartment that Mister Cage put on the market and then took off as quickly as a hummingbird flaps its little wings

The new photos include a look-see into one of the bedrooms which offers an undeniably spectacular view of the Empire State Building. Mister Cage, or his nice gay decorator, has placed a Frank Gehry designed Power Play armchair in one corner and what appears to be a Mies van der Rohe Barcelona day bed at the foot of the bed. Both solid if obvious choices for a furniture collector. The bathroom appears to have been done up with mirrors and black onyx, which certainly looks, uhm, dramatic.

The rather oddly configured floor plan shows that the two combined apartments on the 48th floor actually have three separate entrances, two kitchens and a wet bar in the playroom. In addition to the two primary bedrooms there is also a "sleep area" where we presume the nanny or Mister Cage's death rocker son is stashed when visiting.

Your Mama is certainly not any kind of authority of New York City condo pricing and certainly each person is entitled to whatever their own vision of real estate heaven but a quick look into the internets proves that for almost ten million clams we could find a much better resolved and far more intriguing apartment. Say this full floor unit at the stunning but not yet built Herzog & de Meuron designed tower in TriBeCa. Or maybe this crazy co-op on Park Avenue that was done by architecture's most famous color queens Stamberg Aferiat. Or, for a lot less money, a posh place at the legendarily dee-voon Dakota where you might have the distinct pleasure of seeing Yoko Ono taking out the trash in her slippers.

Andy Dick: Valley Boy?

BUYER: Andy Dick
LOCATION: Hatteras Street, Woodland Hills, CA
PRICE: $703,000
SIZE: 2,429 square feet, 3 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms
DESCRIPTION: ...Enter this one-story home- the model home of its tract–and you are immediately looking at a 15,000 s.f. flat lot w/ pool spread out before you like your own private park! You know exactly how to bring this exposed beam, hi ceilinged diamond-in-the-rough to estate status....

YOUR MAMAS NOTES: Ack-tor, "comedian," and professional fool Andy Dick is well known for taking his indecent, inappropriate and, frankly, not particularly funny ways wherever he may go and now the lucky residents of the San Fernando Valley have this hot mess of a man to contend with. Yes children, property records show that back in January of 2008 Mister Dick purchased a house on Hatteras Street in hotter than Hades Woodland Hills.

For all the children who live under a gossip rock and don't already know far too much about his public shenanigans let Your Mama give you a small sampling of Mister Dick's alarming behavior. Mister Dick has been rehabbed at least thrice, sired three children with two women, was recently picked up and taken to the pokey for allegedly groping a teenage gurl in some forsaken California town called Murieta, been booted from more parties than there are numbers to count and sometimes, unfortunately, flashes his peen for crowds. We'd feel bad for Mister Dick and his apparent issues with booze and other nefarious substances, but we sort think that he's made his obscene behavior and public inebriation into his professional gimmick. And as everyone knows, "You Gotta Have a Gimmick" if you want to get ahead.

Anyhoo, property records show that the out and proud bisexual forked over $703,000 to buy a three bedroom and 2 bathroom house that measures in at 2,429 square feet. Listing information shows the house was built in 1963 as the model home for the tract development in which is sits and was marketed as a fixer upper. We're not exactly sure how it is that Mister Dick makes his money, but let's hope he has a few pennies left for the renovations.

We'll probably catch some serious heat for saying this but Your Mama would sooner call hell home than shack up in Woodland damn Hills where temperatures regularly hover around 100 degrees. None-the-less, Mister Dick's new home has a vaguely Wexler and Eichler-esque quality to it and we think with a smart architect, an attractive landscaper and a nice gay–or in Dick's case, bisexual–decorator it just might be possible to turn this into a lovely, if not particularly well located, mid-century residence. Plus, we're digging the secluded free-form swimming pool surrounded by tons of flagstone.

Property records show Mister Dick also owns two undeveloped parcels in Topanga Canyon that reports indicate span roughly 80 acres and we've recently heard through the gossip grapevine that he is either renting or purchased a live/work condo on Cahuenga Boulevard near Universal City but we're unable to confirm that with property records right now so don't none of you go reporting that like it's celebrity real estate gospel.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Lenny Kravitz Slashes Penthouse Price. Again.

Looks like the prodigiously pierced Grammy winning musician Lenny Kravitz might finally be getting serious (or desperate) about selling his downtown Manhattan penthouse apartment that has been for sale for-evah.

Located in the same Crosby Street boo-teek building that curious Courtney Love ladee once called home, the approximately 6,000 square foot triplex now carries an asking price of $14,995,000. A year ago when Your Mama discussed the over-processed penthouse it had an asking price of $19,500,000.

The apartment has been all did up and worked over in the many shades of brown by Mister Kravitz's personal design team and as it turns out, one of Your Mama's well connected confreres, a gal we'll call Misty Mortified, has been inside this penthouse. While sipping a designer beer and sucking on a cancer stick Misty gleefully recounted her visits to the residential extravaganza telling us there are more terlits than she could keep track of (we count nine on the floor plan), a sterile kitchen (plus two more kitchenettes), a shower room that opens right into the damn hallway, "beaver fur couches sprayed with perfume" that got her allergies up and that the only personal item in the entire place is a giant mural of his mother Roxy Roker that greets guests as they step off the elevator.

This is the very same apartment that famously suffered from "blocked, clogged, and congested" terlits that resulted in several lawsuits. Clotted up crappers or not, Mister Kravitz is reported to have previously leased the four bedroom place to several high profile people like Oscar winning actor Denzel Washington and Oscar winning actress Nicole Kidman. As far as we know, Mister Kravitz also maintains a long owned but recently rehabbed residence on Biscayne Point Circle in Miami as well as an apartment in gay Paree.

Another Celeb Biting the Real Estate Dust

Uh dear. We know not a one of you will have an ounce of compassion, but another famous person has been taken out by the hammer of foreclosure. According to a Palm Beach Post columnist, former Fugee Wyclef Jean has some serious real estate woes down in Miami Beach, FL where a waterfront property owned by the Haitian hip hopper has been foreclosed and is scheduled to be sold at auction on December 12.

According to property records and recent reports, back in October of 2004 a bizness entity comprised of Mister Jean and others took a $2,000,000 mortgage on a canal front property on Miami Beach's posh Pine Tree Drive. The plans, apparently, were to rebuild the house and, we suspect but can not confirm, sell the property on at a prodigious profit. However, the project ran into financial troubles and was abandoned two years ago and built up fines of $6,200 by the city of Miami Beach. A series of construction liens were filed on the property including a $75,000 lien by the project architects. Eventually, the creditors became as angry as a hooker in church and forced a foreclosure.

The bizness group that includes Mister Jean now reportedly owes (approx.) $2,400,000 on the property. Guess we'll have to wait until December 12 to see if the the property will pull in someone with 2.4 million clams who is willing to take on the expensive headache of completing the construction.

Property records show Mister Jean has owned dee-luxe digs on Cameron Road in swanky Saddle River, New Jersey since July of 1998 where he and the wifey plunked down $1,850,000 for a 2 acre estate.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Nic Cage Is At It. Again.

SELLER: Nicholas Cage
LOCATION: Fifth Avenue, New York, NY
PRICE: $9,750,000
SIZE: 3,550 square feet, 3 bedrooms and 3.5 bathrooms
DESCRIPTION: L.A. glamour in the heart of Gotham City. These two adjacent, dramatic and rarely available apartments with internal access to one another are located on a high floor with sweeping and breathtaking views of all of Manhattan. The apartments benefit from unparalleled views and flair–this is the way New York should be seen....

YOUR MAMAS NOTES: Jeezis, Mary and Jehoshaphat we are getting so damn sick and tahrd of discussing the capricious and constant real estate machinations of Oscar winning property maven Nicholas Cage. Not only is the hairific actor attempting to lighten his real estate load by selling his huge house in Bel Air (recently price chopped from $29,999,000 to $24,950,000), he's also recently listed a private island in the Bahamas, one of his two houses in New Orleans, a resplendent residence in Rhode Island, an ass uglee mansion in Las Vegas, and last week he foisted his New York City pied a terre on to the market with an asking price $9,750,000.

However, after just a few short hours on the open market, the listing for the 48th floor spread high above Fifth Avenue was unceremoniously yanked and mysteriously marked "temporarily" off the market on the always informative StreetEasy listing service. Not sure if this means Mister Cage decided not to sell, if someone jumped the gun by putting the listing online or if it's just an attempt to put the kibosh on all the tongue wagging by the real estate gossips. Uh oh. Too late.

Anyhoo, property records and recent reports reveal that Mister Cage purchased two adjacent units on the 48th floor of the Olympic Tower in 2004 and 2005 for a combined price of $5,500,000. Together, according to listing information, the apartments measure approximately 3,550 square feet and include 3 bedrooms and 3.5 bathrooms.

The teeny tiny photographs we were able to locate show a corner living room wrapped in vertigo inducing floor to ceiling glass that turns Manhattan into a glittering carpet of lights below. We are not sure who does the day-core of all Mister Cage's many mansions, but in this case we are rather unimpressed. Yes, we do dig the twin Eames loungers which provide a perfect place for cat napping, perusing the tabs, peering out over the city and/or letting a big gin and tonic slowly seep into the blood stream. However, we're concerned about that rug which looks far too much like the pelt of our perfidious pussy Sugar for our comfort. Besides, how ever does one vacuum that thing? More disruptive to our equilibrium is that crazy track lighting bending, swooping and swirling all across the damn ceiling. For what it's worth, and it ain't worth nuthin', A couple of striking floor lamps and a stoopidly modern or aggressively organic chandelier over the dining room table would have been much more preferable to Your Mama.

The Olympic Tower, sheathed in a curtain of brown tinted glass, has long housed rich and powerful people since it was built in 1976 by Aristotle Onassis as a mixed use building with high profile retail space on the ground floor, (approx.) 20 floors of office space and 29 floors of luxury condos above. Previous residents have included any number of foreign dignitaries whose wives appreciated its proximity to Bergdorf Goodman, the Gucci family who owned an 18-room doo-plex, Pink Floyd front man Roger Waters, and billionaire arms-dealer Adnan Khashoggi who famously had a 16' long swimming pool installed in his large and lavish doo-plex apartment after the building was completed, an expensive feat of engineering if there ever was one.