Ariana Grande has “one less problem” on her proverbial plate, or at least one less high-maintenance property. Records confirm the Florida-bred songstress has sold her stylish Montecito home for $9.1 million, far more than the $6.8 million she paid Ellen DeGeneres for the place just two years ago. Siteline Santa Barbara first reported the off-market deal.
The spendy buyer is Michael Kives, who may not be a household name but has long been a member of Hollywood’s elite. He’s also the founder of K5 Global, a venture capital outfit that describes itself as a “media and financial services advisory and consulting firm.” In addition to his new Montecito digs, Kives and wife Lydia also own a $12 million home in Beverly Hills.
Kives now holds keys to one of the more unique and storied properties in Montecito. Originally constructed in England during the 1700s as two separate barns, the so-called Porter House was born from the two 18th-century structures being dismantled, shipped to California, and painstakingly fused back together in the 20th-century, creating a Tudor-style main residence that spans a reported 5,500 square feet, though it’s currently configured with just two bedrooms.
Astute Grande fans will recall that the “7 Rings” crooner was married last summer at the magical Montecito property. And if the place looks as if it just stepped out of a Thomas Kinkade painting, you can thank DeGeneres and Portia de Rossi, who bought it in January 2020 for $3.6 million, renovated it as seen in photos here, and flipped it to Grande for the aforementioned $6.8 million — all in the span of four months.
Set behind high hedges and great gates on a 1.3-acre lot, the house is perennially shaded by mature trees. Inside, the Narnia-like interior spaces include two separate kitchens, both with designer appliances, two indoor dining areas, two full bathrooms and two powder rooms. There are vaulted ceilings throughout, and a mix of concrete, stone and brick floors. Also on the premises are a dedicated laundry room and at least five fireplaces.
DeGeneres renovated the interiors in her signature style, which includes lots of milky white, deep gray and other earthy colors. An octagonal library sports antique casement windows, and the lofted master bedroom overlooks one of the home’s two living rooms. The property is not currently outfitted with a swimming pool, a bit surprising for a $9.1 million house in Southern California, but the charming grounds arguably make up for that deficiency, and the Pacific Ocean is only a short drive away.
No word yet about whether Grande plans to purchase another Montecito home, but she still owns two expensive properties in the Hollywood Hills: one a $9 million estate in the Bird Streets neighborhood, and the other a more modest cottage bought earlier this year from Cameron Diaz. She also once owned a Paul McClean-designed mansion that was sold last year for $14 million to talent agent Nancy Josephson and film producer Larry Sanitsky.