A Hollywood Regency-style villa in the tony Trousdale Estates area of Beverly Hills, Calif., that was once home to late actress Majorie Lord has been sold for $15 million and unconfirmed word on the Platinum Triangle real estate street is that the new owners are none other than architecture and design savvy house-flipping fanatics Ellen DeGeneres and Portia de Rossi.
Tucked into a discreet cul-de-sac on almost half of an acre with an over-the-treetops view that on a clear day extends all the way to the Pacific Ocean, the residence was originally designed and built in 1962 for Lord, mother of 1988 Oscar-nominee Anne Archer (“Fatal Attraction”), and her third husband, banker Henry Volk, by iconoclast architect John Elgin Woolf. Several months after Lord’s November 2017 passing at 97, the single-story residence was put up for sale at $9.25 million and soon sold for $8.3 million to a limited liability company connected to the illustrious Marmol Radziner architecture firm. After a thoughtful and unquestionably expensive restoration, update and expansion that included reconfiguring the kitchen and moving the swimming pool, the property was set back out for sale in April of this year (2018) at $16.5 million. Marketing materials indicate there are five bedrooms and 4.5 bathrooms in about 5,100-square-feet.
Extremely tall front doors characteristic of Woolf’s theatrical signature style are topped by a row of intricately detailed oxidized copper finials and swing open to an intimately proportioned and delightfully round foyer lit by a glitzy, tear drop-shaped crystal chandelier. Striated beige marble floor tiles laid in a monochromatic checkerboard pattern flow from the foyer and entrance gallery into a grandly proportioned combination living and dining room that features a wood-paneled ceiling and delicately carved marble fireplace, both original to the house, plus a sleek wet bar and a solid wall of full-height glass sliders that open to a vast, curved loggia lined with an Old-School elegant if slightly gaudy quartet of fluted columns. With gold-veined marble countertops that waterfall over the ends of a massive center island, the spacious and newly installed, all-white kitchen opens to an informal dining space and den with full-height glass sliders, a curved bay window set into a paneled niche and a solid wall of built-in cabinets that hide media and audio equipment.
Each of the four guest bedrooms, one of them outfitted as a media lounge and another an office, have direct access to an enclosed patio or garden while the master suite includes a large bedroom with fireplace, another bowed bay window set into a paneled niche plus floor-to-ceiling glass sliders to the yard, extensive closet space and a brand-new bathroom with Roman-style tub below a huge picture window that looks into a private walled courtyard.
The beige marble floor tiles extend out from in the living/dining room and beyond the loggia to surround a plunge-sized swimming pool and spa that follows the same curve as the loggia. An outdoor kitchen and grilling station with snack bar was added off to one side of the loggia and, beyond the pool, a semi-circular terrace with fire bowl juts out over the hillside with a panoramic canyon and city and distant ocean views.
Hardly a season goes by without DeGeneres, who’s won an astonishing 30 Emmys, and De Rossi, who says she quit acting before she signed on for the 2018 Netflix re-boot of “Arrested Development,” buying and/or selling a stylishly dressed multi-million dollar residence in one of Southern California’s most renowned and expensive zip codes. After first trying to sell it with a pie-in-the-sky price of $45 million, in the early part of winter in 2017 the property mad pair sold a sumptuous 13-acre compound in Montecito for $34 million to Netflix honcho Ted Sarandos and, despite only buying it in the fall of 2017 for $7.195 million, in the spring of 2018 they sold an historic equestrian ranch, also in Montecito, for $11 million to Tinder founder Sean Rad. The couple’s always in flux property portfolio currently includes an oceanfront contemporary along an exclusive stretch of sand in Carpinteria, Calif., they scoped up in late 2017 for $18.6 million and a mid-century residence sequestered down a long, gated driveway on one of Beverly Hills’s most prestigious streets they snapped up in a late 2015 off-market deal for $15.995 million.
Listing photos: Hilton & Hyland