Wednesday, October 19, 2011
Your Mama Hears...
...That a sadly disheveled and endangered of being destroyed Richard Neutra-designed pile in Beverly Hills, CA known as the Kronish House was saved from the wrecking ball by a last minute purchase by an as yet unnamed buyer who coughed up $12,800,000 for the property.
Actually we didn't hear about the sale of the much neglected mid-century modern, we read about it in the Wall Street Journal and on Curbed, who faithfully followed and thoroughly reported on the Kronish House's real estate saga that grabbed the attentions of architectural historians and enthusiasts over the last few weeks and months, particularly those folks who care about such things in Los Angeles.
The Wall Street Journal did not name or even hint at the identity of the new owner who purchased the property through a trust but did quote listing agent Susan Smith from Hilton & Hyland who stated (via email), "The new owner is going to preserve the house and this will take about two years...It will be a private home." While that surely is a relief to preservationist it's still not clear if the owner will restore the house to original architectural purity or if it will be sharp-tailored and custom-fitted to a modern-day lifestyle.
Yesterday, the ever-intrepid folks at Curbed guessed with odds of 3:1 that the Neutra-loving new owner might be Michael LeFetra, a well-known amongst Los Angeles' real estate freaks and aficionados as a prolific buyer, restorer and flipper of architecturally significant homes in need of TLC. Actress and historic house lover and restorer Diane Keaton came in with odds of 7:1, next door neighbor Madonna was given odds of 18:1, and architecture and design buff Brad Pitt came in near the bottom of the list with odds of 20:1.
Natch, soon as we digested the speculation on Curbed we snatched up our bedazzled and bedraggled princess phone to touch base with a few of our informants who purvey property in the Platinum Triangle.
We quickly heard back from a long time informant–let's call her Anita Tellsomebody–who has on several previous occasions has provided spot on Platinum Triangle real estate rumor confirmations. According to Miss Tellsomebody, the buyer of the Kronish House is...drum roll please...Stavros Niarchos.
Mister Niarchos is an heir to a great Greek shipping fortune but he is perhaps best known by tabloid blog and gossip glossy readers of one of the two young Greek shipping heirs Paris Hilton got busy with back in the mid-Naughts when Miss Hilton could not tie her shoe, braid her hair or flash her vajayjay without the paparazzi taking 4,000 photos.
Listing information for the property shows low-slung single story residence was built in 1954, sits on a flat 1.99 acre flag lot, and currently measures 6,891 square feet with 6 bedrooms and 5.5 bathrooms. Full walls of floor-to-ceiling sliding glass doors throughout the residence allow the interior spaces to spill out to and merge seamlessly with the tile terraces and courtyards that surround the house.
The buyer's identity, shielded behind a trust, has not yet been confirmed by anyone willing to go on the record. That means, sugar beets, we're just passing along a little high-toned real estate rumor and gossip today, okay?
listing photos: Curbed