Yolanda happened to be doing some record-browsing through a Sherman Oaks neighborhood recently when we stumbled across one of those new-fangled “modern farmhouse”-style spec-builds that are currently all the rage here in LA. The pudgy abode — nearly 5,000-square-feet of living space within it — was sold a few months back to an enigmatically-named corporate entity that links to a management firm in New York City well-known for handling the financial affairs of many successful musicians.
After a wee bit of research, Yolanda discovered the home’s new owner is a woman named Kelendria “Kelly” Rowland, a gal best-known as a longtime member of Destiny’s Child, one of the best-selling girl groups of all time. She is also, of course, widely known as the childhood best friend of Beyoncé Knowles.
Now in her late 30s, Ms. Rowland was born in Atlanta but moved with her mother to Houston, Texas as a child. It was there, in Houston, where she became acquainted with the Knowles family. As the stories go, Ms. Rowland endured a rather tumultuous home life, so Mr. and Mrs. Knowles took her under their wing and even allowed Ms. Rowland to move into their house as a young teen as she and Bey pursued their music dream.
After years of rejections and agonizingly close calls, Destiny’s Child scored a Columbia record deal and a multi-platinum album — The Writing’s on the Wall — in 1999. Although the group would eventually disband in 2004, they sold a whopping 60 million records worldwide, enough to cement their place in the history books and make Ms. Rowland a millionaire many times over.
In the past decade plus, Ms. Rowland has remained in the public eye through a variety of solo projects, including four full-length albums.
Unfortunately for our gurl, she has long been — perhaps unfairly and sometimes comedically — compared professionally to her longtime BFF, who went on to achieve superstardom after Destiny’s Child. Poor Ms. Rowland’s songs and albums, while moderately successful in their own right, barely registered a blip in comparison to the popularity and acclaim that Bey’s stuff engendered. Ms. Rowland herself addressed living in Beyonce’s hip-shakin’ shadow in a 2013 song called Dirty Laundry, which Vice wrote a rather unkind article. But we digress.
Nowadays Ms. Rowland keeps busy professionally by serving as a judge on The Voice Australia. And on a more personal note, she has been married to her manager Tim Weatherspoon since 2014. The couple have a toddler-age son named Titan, presumably named after either the mythological Greek deities or the moon of Saturn. Or perhaps the Nissan pickup truck.
Described as a “Modern Napa estate” in the listing, the new spec-build sits on a rather compact (but typical for this neighborhood) .19-acre lot. The surrounding residential streets are classic suburbia: lovely, leafy, and (mostly) quiet. Still, the property is just a couple blocks south of bustling Ventura Boulevard, so it is walking distance from an assortment of convenient shopping and dining destinations.
Completely walled and gated for privacy, the house additionally includes high-tech security features: a “fully integrated home system with cameras, intercom activated pedestrian and driveway gates, and audio system.”
Once guests are allowed past the virtual sentries, a concrete walkway leads past a grassy front yard anchored by a mature blue needle pine tree. Ho-hum architectural features like the typical two-car front-facing garage are offset by a cutesy porch with a sitting area and a two-tone paint scheme.
The front door swings open to a long central entrance hall. To the right of the entryway is a double-height living room with a fireplace, to the left is a formal dining room with a contemporary chandelier. Continuing down the hallway leads one to the fireplace-equipped family room, which in turn opens desirably to a lovely kitchen with high-end appliances, porcelain-colored cabinetry, breakfast nook, and a quartz-topped center island with bar-style seating options.
Pretty nice. Yolanda does not necessarily dislike the faux timbered ceiling beams, but we ain’t feeling those lampshade-lookin’ chandeliers.
Elsewhere on the main floor are a wine cellar and a media room (the latter is just a regular-sized room equipped with a screen and a projector). There are a total of 5 beds and 6 baths in the 4,825-squre-foot house, and the master suite is equipped all of the requisite luxury features: a bedroom with a sitting area and fireplace, a bathroom with dual vanities, an all-glass shower and a soaking tub, and a large walk-in closet.
The backyard is rather petite, but it does sport a wee grassy lawn, a pool w/ inset spa, and — tucked into a far corner — an “outdoor pool bath”, according to the listing.
All of this cost Ms. Rowland about $3.5 million — $3,450,000, to be exact. And as far as Yolanda knows — and we don’t know very far — Ms. Rowland does not currently own any other real estate.