Listen up real close because Yolanda is about to tell you a real estate secret. Well, okay, it’s not really much of a secret. But we’re gonna whisper it to y’all anyway.
Although the 90210 is (perhaps) the most famous and star-studded postal code in all the world, the vast majority of entertainment industry celebrities do not, in fact, reside in the city of Beverly Hills. There are certainly some notable, mega-rich exceptions — Taylor Swift and Ellen DeGeneres spring to mind — but by ‘n large even most A-listers eschew the hallowed streets of Beverly. Gasp!
There are a couple reasons for this, we think. First off is pricing. Despite their fatty-fat pocketbooks, multi-millionaire celebs can be just as cost-conscious as the Average Idaho Joe. (Unless their name is Nicholas Cage, of course). And houses in Beverly Hills proper tend to be overpriced even when compared to other pricey nearby neighborhoods. Lots of foreign and financier money flows up into there.
But the main reason, we believe, is because most homes in Beverly Hills do not provide the kind of seclusion that stars prefer. Who wants those loud-ass tour buses loitering outside their house every half-hour, right? So if they’re not living in some far-flung locale like Malibu or Hidden Hills, celebrities tend to congregate up in the Hollywood Hills and especially the Beverly Hills Post Office area, where the houses still sport that shiny 90210 zip code but are technically located within the city of Los Angeles.
As we say, privacy is tantamount to celebs and thus these woodsy B.H.P.O. areas (Coldwater Canyon, Benedict Canyon) suit them just dandy. All those myriad itsy-bitsy side lanes and cul-de-sacs and hidden estates are wondrously confusing. Even to an LA native.
Take today’s house, deep in the throes of Benedict Canyon. It’s about as celebrity pedigreed as they come. Truly an exquisite lineage on this beauty. Once in the hands of William Asher — director of I Love Lucy — the property was later acquired by actress Kate Jackson of Charlie’s Angels fame and fortune. Eventually musician Kenny G came to own the home, which he sold in the late 1990s to tennis legend Pete Sampras. It was Mr. Sampras, kiddies, who engineered and built the tennis court on the estate.
Anywho, Mr. Sampras sold the property in 2004 to bigshot film producer Jon Peters, who let it slip away in the divorce from his now-ex-wife, Mindy Peters. It was our ex-Mrs. Peters who just sold the place a couple months back for $5,250,000.
Naturally, Yolanda was curious about the identity of the new owner. But property records are locked up real, real tight, y’all. The only clue lies in the fact that the mysterious purchasing entity links directly back to a random P.O. box in an obscure, middle-class town outside Detroit, Michigan.
Michigan?!?! When we saw that, Yolanda suspected something sinister was afoot. Who from Michigan would buy a multi-million dollar house located in a dark canyon outside Beverly Hills? We asked and slapped everyone we knew but but it was a true dead-end road, kids. Nobody knew the secret (or would spill the jelly beans to us). Even our pal Vlad the Revealer at Celebrity Address Aerial was stumped.
Poor Yolanda was forced to call in reinforcements and open a right proper real estate investigation.
But never fear, y’all, we got it sorted out. We just happen to know that the new owners are none other than Kate Upton and her fiancee, pro slugger Justin Verlander. It’s not such a surprise, really. They both originally hail from Michigan. And they were papped LA-house-hunting only a few months ago.
Yolanda believes that Miss Upton is as close to a modern-day Jayne Mansfield as we’re ever likely to get. The all-American blonde bombshell has popped up here and there as an actress, but her real moneymaker is her buxom bosom. That’s not just Yolanda’s crass self talking, either. Good heavens, one of Google’s top search results for Miss Upton is entitled “Kate Upton’s Cleavage Cannot be Contained“.
Anywho, Miss Upton’s many appearances in the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue have mader her a big ol’ celebrity. Oh, and in case y’all didn’t know, Miss Upton is also a rich heiress to the Whirlpool washing machine fortune. No joke.
Mr. Verlander, for his part, has played for the Detroit Tigers pro baseball team for the past decade or so.
Avid baseball fans may recall that our Miss Upton, bless her heart, caused a big ol’ stink recently when she had an old-fashioned, epic Twitter meltdown. We ain’t even know what she was yammering on about, to be honest, but it had something to do with Major League Baseball and Miss Upton was so stinkin’ mad. Oh Lordy, was she mad! She even said a bunch of real classy shit like “Hey @MLB I thought I was the only person allowed to fuck @JustinVerlander“.
Le sigh. Yolanda is of the opinion that all these hare-brained celebrities should be permanently banned from Twittering. Don’t it always seem that every time you turn around they’re causing some silly controversy by posting dumb Tweets or deleting dumb Tweets or apologizing for dumb Tweets? How about all of you just shut the Twat up, pretty please.
The ample 1.5-acre lot allows the 5,521-square-foot rambler to sprawl out behind a long black-topped driveway, gate, and a towering wall of mature trees, totally invisible from the well-trafficked canyon road below. The two-story, vaguely L-shaped structure is described in agent marketing materials as an “impeccable East Coast country home — the epitome of Southern California indoor/outdoor living”. And sure enough, many of the lower floor’s rooms have French doors opening to this or that red brick terrace or patch of emerald-green lawn.
The Tesla-driving Miss Upton will no doubt appreciate the spacious garage (not pictured, sorry) plus the ample additional off-street parking for wherever she feels like hookin’ up the cord.
The combo living room/library has vaulted, beamed wood ceilings and a large stone fireplace with the old-school mantle and hearth. The trendy light-colored wood floors are perhaps evidence that some renovations were performed here within the last few years.
Here you have the “gourmet chef’s kitchen”, per the listing. The scale is impressive, especially for a house this size. High-grade appliances, marble (?) countertops, and recessed lighting all make their expected appearances.
Quite possibly the best room in the home is the family room, with its vaulted, unvarnished-looking ceiling contrasting with the whitewashed walls. And there’s a full bar.
All told — and including the maid’s room — there are 5 bedrooms and 6 bathrooms. The master suite has a fireplace, vaulted ceiling, dual closets and baths. At least one of said bathrooms has a built-in soaking tub slathered in a rather ’90s-lookin’ swath of beige tile. Also, is that wall-to-wall carpeting we spy on the floor?
One of the additional bedrooms has mirrored walls and a black (stone? marble?) shower. We feel bad for Miss Upton and Mr. Verlander’s maid having to clean that mess.
The backyard features an irregularly-shaped pool and petite spa. Views take in the forest-like canyon surroundings. Doesn’t that tree-and-flagstone terrace remind y’all of Redwood National Park? Call Yolanda crazy, but if we recall correctly they have a similar setup over there.
The sunken (and suspended!) proper north/south tennis court was built, as previously mentioned, by our very own Mr. Sampras.
By the by, remember how Yolanda told y’all that Benedict Canyon has a lot of celebrities? We weren’t just whistlin’ Dixie. The Upton-Verlander couple’s new next door neighbor happens to be none other than Fast and Furious superstar Vin Diesel.
Didn’t know Mr. Diesel lived in Benedict Canyon? Yeah, neither did Yolanda until quite recently. But in fact, he’s secretly owned a house there since way back in 2001, when he bought it for $2,250,000 (through a blind trust, of course). It’s out understanding that the property is currently undergoing some sort of renovation.
Mr. Verlander & Miss Upton’s other next door neighbor is a lady named Marjorie Goodson, who is loaded because her daddy Mark Goodson created just about every successful TV game show in history. The Price is Right, Family Feud, Password, What’s My Line — those are all Mr. Goodson’s productions. And just beyond Ms. Goodson’s house is the big-ass estate of rocker/reality TV star Gene Simmons.
Other famous neighbors within sugar-borrowing distance include “77 Sunset Strip” star Roger Smith and his Golden Globe-winning singer/actress wife Ann-Margret, Max Baer Jr. of the Beverly Hillbillies, film producer Mark Amin, British actress Anne Heywood, actor turned international producer Mark Damon and his actress wife Margaret Markov, and his maroon worshipfulness Adam Levine, who Yolanda has repeatedly heard is on the hunt for a big new house.
Whew. That’s a lotta big egos!
One last thing. Yolanda has a friend who happens to know that Justin and Kate invited their new next door neighbors (Vin Diesel and his girlfriend/baby mama Paloma Jimenez) over to shoot the breeze just the other day. The boozy crew sat out on the sunken/raised tennis court and tucked into several enormous martinis. Our friend just happened to be in the neighborhood, you see, and couldn’t help but overhear the conversation. We’re just relaying the scene as it was told to us, kiddies. Don’t judge.
“Can’t tell you how excited we are to have you as neighbors,” said the congenial Vin. “Let’s do some neighborly activities together! We’ve got this basketball court at our house, do either of you –“
“I love wearing uniforms,” Kate suddenly declared while picking something out of her teeth. “Reminds me of this crazy eight months I spent livin’ down in Charlotte. Y’all ever been there? Pretty as a damn picture. Lots o’ houses and trees ‘n shit. Sorta like here. Anywhos, I’m livin’ at this old dude Alfred’s ranch house or some shit and for like eight fuckin’ months my job is just to wear his dead mama’s overalls while groovin’ to the Allman Brother’s “Blue Sky” while he sat there watchin’. Man to this day, to this fuckin’ day, I can’t hear that damn song without rememberin’ ol’ Albert, sitting there on that hay bale, bawlin’ his fuckin’ eyes out while I gyrated all sexy in some ratty ass overalls. To this day, man. The nerve’a that ol’ rooster, right? Hey, can I smoke out here? ‘Course I can smoke out here, it’s my damn house. By the way, would you mind if I chopped down all these damn trees? I got this neat-o doublewide, sorta a family heirloom, ya see, and I need to store it up here. I’m thinkin’ of parkin’ it over on that big ball court of yours for awhile, whaddya say?”
Paloma looked horrified. Vin stammered, “Oh…um…er gee golly gosh, Katie, we love those old trees and using our basketball court. Won’t you reconsider?”
Kate’s eyes turned cold and angry. She puffed efficiently on her cigarette while speaking calmly from the side of her mouth.
“Vinny, did I ever tell you about the time I starred in that film noir? I was workin’ as a secretary at some high-class pantyhose boutique just outside Missoula. Pretty sure it was a front for the Russian mafia or somethin’ but I wasn’t askin’ questions. Anywhos, this yella lil fella walked in one day and said “Hey lady. Doing movie. But no sexy. Just —’ and he made like this pistol whippin’ motion. “Let’s do it, schnookums” I said. Anyways, we haul ass down to the river and there’s this lil houseboat with a Harley parked outside. Shady, right? But whatever, I pick up the .45, open the door and —”
“I’m sorry, Katie, but does this story have a point?” Vin rudely interrupted.
Kate smiled slyly and lit up another cig. She chuckled a low, smoky laugh.
“The point, darlin’, is that I know a whole grip o’ peeps that’d pay damn good money to see you six feet under. And that’s only the Japs.”
Vin’s eyes widened. Paloma fainted. Justin sobbed softly. Kate nodded smugly.
“So you put that in your peace pipe and blow that whistle, Sugarshack. Hey, there an Arby’s ’round here? Mama needs a big bag o’ Curlies right quick.”