Friday, September 11, 2009

The Colorful "Casa" of Ryan Cabrera

SELLER: Ryan Cabrera
LOCATION: N. Knoll Drive, Los Angeles, CA
PRICE: $1,100,000
SIZE: 2,445 square feet, 3 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms
DESCRIPTION: ...Totally private walled & gated drive on Spanish resort style compound sited on a knoll in the Hwd Hills. Off street parking for 6 cars. Gourmet kit w/Viking appliances. All public rooms open out to backyard with wet bar, lush foliage, spa with waterfall that flows into the pool. Master is exceptional with walk-in closet, make-up room, shoe closet. master bath is appointed with fireplace.

YOUR MAMAS NOTES: Although flash in the pan pop rocker Ryan Cabrera has been trying to sell his house in the Hollywood Knolls neighborhood in Los Angeles since at least August of 2008, Your Mama has rather kindly refrained from giving the young man a real estate dressing down. But now that he's offering his 3 bedroom and 3 pooper property as a short sale with an asking price of $1,100,000, like a prostie to a john, we just can't stay away.

Mister Cabrera first popped on to the celebrity stage back in 2004 when he was dating budding pop tart turned wannabe ack-tress Ashlee Simpson. That relationship did not last very long but Mister Cabrera's music career is still managed by Ashlee's daddy Joe Simpson. In fact and surprisingly, some property records for Mister Cabrera's "casa" in the Hollywood Hills link back to Papa Simpson's longtime residence on Hayvenhurst Drive in Encino, CA. If Your Mama is being honest, and we always are, we can not recall ever hearing or knowing we were hearing one of crooning Cabrera's pop rock melodies. What we do recall is seeing his hair standing up on end looking like a damn porcupine in pictures in all the gossip glossies. That rather unfortunate look has, for better or worse, given way to one of tattoos, long hair, cigarettes, and a lot of man jewelry that all together seem designed to transmit the message, "I am a real and serious artist."

Property records show Mister Cabrera forked over $1,450,000 for his 2,445 square foot house on N. Knoll Drive in October of 2006. A previous report by Mister Big Time in August of 2008 shows that Mister Cabrera first put his property, creatively dubbed Villa Cabrera according to listing information, on the market with an asking price of $1,699,000. The price was subsequently chopped a couple of times before the property was de-listed in mid-August of 2009 and re-listed in early September as a short sale with a new asking price of $1,100,000.

The listing describes the property as a "Spanish resort style compound." As far as we can tell, this house is not only not a compound but, in our humble and utterly meaningless opinion, it's about as Spanish as the Dr. Cooter, which is to say not Spanish at all. Just as putting lipstick on a pig still leaves you with a pig, laying down a bunch of Mexican tile and tacking a tile roof on to an otherwise perfectly ordinary traditional style house built in the mid-1980s still leaves you with a trad house from the 1980s doing drag as a sad señorita.

None the less, according to listing information the property does have some nice features: There is the gated, celebrity style driveway; There are indoor and outdoor kitchens chock full of Viking brand appliances; There is an extensive master suite that includes a fireplace in the pooper, a steam shower for releasing toxins, a separate shoe closet (hello!) and an über metro make-up room. Yes, chickens, that's right, a make up room. There are also, according to listing information, extensive security and surveillance setups as well as a kick ass entertainment system with individual sound controls for each room.

The house was designed as an upside-down house with the public rooms on the second floor and (at least some of the) bedrooms located on the ground floor. This upside-down situation can sometimes a wonky decision at best due to problems such as the distance and multiple stories between the motor court and the kitchen. Unless there is a dumbwaiter, and elevator or perhaps a funicular, our bossy (but gluteally feeble) house gurl Svetlana would forbid that Your Mama and the Dr. Cooter purchase or live in a house where the garage and the kitchen are located on different floors. In Mister Cabrera's case, the house was justifiably designed upside down in order to accommodate for the up sloping lot, to provide a view of the hills on the other side of the freeway and to allow the public rooms to open up to the entertainment terrace and swimming pool deck.

Immediately upon entering the house it becomes apparent that Mister Cabrera has a flair for color. Not only is the foyer and stair hall painted an adventurous shade of fuchsia we have never even seen before, he continued the color right, undaunted, into the living room/boob-toob watching area. Mister Cabrera's chromatic moxie can also be seen in the music room, painted an intense and undeniably tropical shade of cyan that sets off his all his wonderful "artwork," gee-tars, and a Liberace worthy white baby grand piano. As we push into the master suite we see Mister Cabrera has persevered with the pigment panoply. The walls have been coated with a deep, brooding purple and the four poster bed–dramatically festooned with white Christmas lights–is dressed with rust colored satin sheets. Listen chickens, whether we like the particulars of the day-core or not we can appreciate that Mister Cabrera freed himself of the strict restraints of dignified decorating. We can. However, as we stated a few weeks ago when discussing the Santa Monica, CA condo of former Playboy Mansion queen bee Holly Madison, satin sheets are a no-no. Always. Let's recall that Your Mama's decorating rule #1043b states, "No person of any sexual proclivity, identity, preference and/or gender orientation who claims any sense of decorative taste or decorum will fit their bed or any other bed with satin sheets of any color for any reason except, maybe, possibly, in the service of dressing the set of a low budget, retro-themed porno movie shoot." Okay?

Mister Cabrera's hue bravery can also be seen in a second bedroom, bathed in buttercup yellow, as well as in a third where the walls are defiantly and fearlessly coated with a black semi-gloss paint. Ordinarily Your Mama would kudize a black bedroom. In Mister Cabrera's case we'd suggest some editing of the clutter and painting the ceiling black too because, you know, like Charles Manson said, "If you're going to do something, do it well. And leave something witchy." Perhaps the most unique and courageous color treatment in the entire house is the ombre bizness in a fourth bedroom where the stark white at the floor becomes a baby blue at the ceiling. Wow. One of the most important skills in bedecking and bedazzling a room is to know when to stop. The mural of the thinly branched lavender tree done on top of the ombre paint treatment is, quite simply, too much. Way too much. Frankly and in truth, the ombre is far too much tincture audacity for our delicate sensibilities.

The exterior spaces of "casa" Cabrera include a motor court that will easily accommodate six cars (the garage appears to hold two more), a large lawn, hedged area at the front of the house perfect for pooch piddling and, in back, a private, walled in swimming pool and spa complex with wide entertainment terraces surrounded by lots of verdant vegetation.

We do not know nor will we speculate with any authority on why he is selling his house in the Hollywood Hills–at a loss, no less–but we do sincerely hope for Mister Cabrera that he's moving on to bigger and better real estate circumstances. However, given that public records reveal a nasty Notice of Default was filed on the property in mid-July of 2009, we sorta doubt that's the situation. Sadly, this is what sometimes happens when very young people make a lot of cheddar in a short period of time and start spending it willy-nilly on things like pricey real estate, plasma tee-vees, custom driveway gates and white grand pianos: They run out of money. There's a moral lesson there, children, iffin you want to hear it.

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