Tag Archives: Montecito

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Michael Jackson’s Neverland Ranch back on the market – again

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Michael Jackson’s Neverland Ranch back on the market – again

Photo credit: Compass

Michael Jackson died 10 years ago on June 25, 2009, and many people around the world commemorated his death by listening to his hit songs and watching his iconic music videos. They celebrated his astronomical career by remembering his early performances as part of The Jackson 5, replaying interviews, and watching documentaries like This Is It that shows the work that went into organizing his last concert, which sadly he never got the chance to perform.

Also remembered is his beloved Neverland Ranch, where he lived from 1987 until 2006. This was where he was finally able to experience childhood, having never had that luxury as part of the hard-working, family-singing group The Jackson 5.

Two years after his death, Neverland was put on the market for $100 million, but never sold. Today, restored at great expense to resemble the original ranch it was when Michael purchased it, the estate is back on the market and reduced to $31 million.

In 1977, developer William Bone bought the bare acreage in Santa Barbara County in Los Olivos, California. Bone engaged an architect to design all the main structures on the property, dig the lake and landscape formal gardens. It was his own fantasy land of sorts, as he was able to design it his way rather than at the direction of his clients. It took him two years working with architect Robert Altevers to get the design to his liking. He named it the Zaca Laderas Ranch and lived there until selling it to Michael in 1987.

Michael bought the 2,700-acre ranch for about $25 million and then spent millions more to develop it into a child’s fantasy land, which he appropriately named Neverland, in reference to the Peter Pan fairy tale. The 13,000-sq.-ft. main house, formal gardens, four-acre lake with fountains and a five-foot waterfall, along with an attractive stone bridge, had already been built by Bone when Michael purchased the property.

Michael added three railroads, a petting zoo, and a full amusement park complete with nine major rides and an arcade. He also installed an electric railroad with 100-feet of track behind the house for his own children.

Neverland was Michael’s beloved home until 2006 when he was charged with child molestation, which supposedly took place at the ranch. Although he was acquitted, the association of so much negativity with the ranch made it difficult for him to continue living there. Except for caretakers, the ranch was closed.

By 2007, Michael was behind in payments on his loan by about $23 million and the ranch was due to go on the auction block; however, investment group Colony Capital stepped in and bought the loan, making them co-owners. In 2009, Colony began restoring the ranch by removing the zoo and amusement park and replacing them with a Zen garden. The amusement park rides are now part of Sacramento’s California State Fair.

Now, on the 10th anniversary of Michael’s death, his beloved Neverland Ranch, renamed the Sycamore Valley Ranch, has had a massive price reduction from the original $100 million to $31 million. The listing agent is Suzanne Perkins of Compass Realty, Montecito, California.


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Celebrity Living: Rob Lowe's classic California estate for sale

Celebrity Living: Rob Lowe’s classic California estate for sale

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Celebrity Living: Rob Lowe’s classic California estate for sale

Heartthrob actor of screen and television, Rob Lowe and his wife Sheryl, have listed their classic Montecito, Calif. estate for $47 million (U.S.).

Located in a celebrity-studded neighborhood, the buyer will be rubbing elbows with some of the world’s biggest stars including Oprah Winfrey, Ellen DeGeneres, Gwyneth Paltrow and Julia Louis-Dreyfus. Montecito is a much favoured retreat away from the work-a-day world of filmdom, located 80 miles northwest of Los Angeles, between the Pacific Ocean and the Santa Ynez Mountains in Santa Barbara County with spectacular hillside views, nearby whale watching and beautiful weather.

Lowe’s estate was threatened by the California wildfires late last year, but was saved thanks to the efforts of firefighters. Lowe, to thank the crew, had them over to his home for a meal. (Picture courtesy KGTV.) The estate is a classic East Coast style and a stand out from the general Mediterranean architecture in the area. Sited on just over three acres, the main house was designed by architect Don Nulty, built in 2009, and encompasses 10,000 square feet.

Also on the grounds are a two-bedroom guest house, a one-bedroom pool house with staff quarters and outdoor kitchen, pool and spa, tennis court with observation areas and lushly landscaped lawns large enough for team sports with mature trees and a vegetable garden. There are two outside fireplaces, terraces and loggias for relaxing or entertaining, water fountains and a koi pond. Formal rose gardens overlook the lawn and from most any location one can enjoy sunsets over the Pacific.

Inside the main house, totalling 20 rooms, are large open formal rooms, a huge white and cheerful family kitchen, separate catering kitchen, eight bedrooms, eleven baths, office, library-music room with bar, family room, various conversation rooms and nooks, a movie theatre, gym and expansive wine cellar. There are nine indoor fireplaces throughout the house with one in the master suite.

Now 54, Lowe has had a busy career in both film and television and is still lighting up the screens. Starting out at age 19 in the movie hit The Outsiders in 1983 and St. Elmo’s Fire in 1985, his good looks and evolving acting skills kept his teenage fans who have turned middle age and are now binge watching him on Code Black and reruns of The West Wing.

Reminiscent of the country estates in Charlottesville, Va. where he was born, Lowe and his wife recreated a classic East Coast-style estate in 2009 in the celebrity outpost of Montecito. Suzanne Perkins of Sotheby’s International Realty, Montecito, is the listing agent.

Photo credit: Jim Bartsch for Sotheby’s International Realty

sothebyshomes.com/Santa-Barbara-Real-Estate/sales/0114372

toptenrealestatedeals.com


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Ellen's Montecito home up for sale

Ellen’s Montecito home up for sale

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Ellen’s Montecito home up for sale

Ellen DeGeneres has been at the top of her profession for years and has won multiples of almost every entertainment award on the planet. She’s made us laugh with her stand-up comedy, glued to the television watching her sitcom Ellen, surprised the world as the first person to come out on national television and has entertained us since 2003 in her long-running talk show, The Ellen DeGeneres Show.

In 1986, when Johnny Carson not only had her appear on his show but also pulled her over for a conversation on the couch, it was obvious that her fame would soar. Carson was a star maker and a summons to the Tonight Show couch was like hitting the jackpot for an up-and-coming comedienne.

For over 30 years, Ellen has been one of America’s favourite performers winning more People’s Choice Awards than anyone else (20) and the Presidential Medal of Freedom from President Barak Obama in 2016.

Ellen is well known for her endless energy dancing up and down the aisles of her TV show studios, headlining numerous Hollywood award shows, her frequent work and performances. In her spare time, Ellen is by far the No. 1 celebrity home flipper, leaving her competitors such as Jennifer Aniston, Meg Ryan and Diane Keaton in the leftover construction dust.

Ellen and her wife, actress Portia de Rossi, have put their 1930s Montecito estate — which held a prominent role in Ellen’s book Home — on the market. It is an extensive house with expansive grounds on a hill overlooking the ocean and mountains.

Known as The Villa, it was designed by noted architect Wallace Frost after returning from Italy. Entranced by 17th-century Italian villas, this was the home he envisioned and built for himself and his family, which he replicated with great accuracy. Decades later, acclaimed architectural designer John Saladino fell in love with its “mix of grandeur and modesty” and commenced a five-year meticulous restoration of the property for his personal use.

Ellen and Portia purchased the The Villa in 2013 and expanded the estate through the acquisition of two adjacent properties, and it now totals more than 16 acres. They spared no expense in modernizing the historic property for a relaxed California lifestyle. The 10,500-square-foot home includes six bedrooms, eight baths, nine fireplaces, multiple libraries, a marble-wrapped chef’s kitchen and formal rooms.

An indoor-outdoor entertaining pavilion was built from stone excavated on-site with hand-made iron windows. The couple also added a lap pool, sunken championship tennis court and installed state-of-the-art irrigation, mechanical, electronic and security systems. The listing agent is Suzanne Perkins of Sotheby’s International Realty. Ellen and Portia have recently placed their romantic Montecito, California 1930s Italian villa on the market at priced at $45 million ($61 million Cdn).

https://www.toptenrealestatedeals.com/homes/weekly-ten-best-homedeals/ 2017/03-20-2017/


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