Michael “Flea” Balzary already owns two enviable homes in the Los Angeles area, a $7.5 million cottage in the Malibu Colony gated community and a funky $4.3 million compound in the La Crescenta foothills. The Red Hot Chili Pepper has always done well in real estate — last year, he sold a spicy oceanfront Malibu estate for $20 million to hedge fund manager Ross Laser, more than double what Balzary originally paid for the place — so he’s bolstering his real estate portfolio yet again, this time doling out an impressive $14 million for a 1.38-acre Mulholland Drive spread.
Though the house has a coveted 90210 zip code, it’s technically located in the steep mountains above L.A.’s Studio City neighborhood. Built way back in 1948, but completely renovated in the early 2000s by L.A. architect Aleks Istanbullu, the three-story architectural estate sold to Flea and his fashion designer wife Melody Ehsani for a nearly $2 million discount off the original $16.9 million ask. The sellers were former Paramont chief Adam Goodman and his wife Jessica, who acquired the formerly ranch-style estate in 2010 for $4.2 million from Emmy-winning animator Gábor Csupó of “Rugrats” fame. Before that, the property had been owned in the ’90s by Blue Note Records president Don Was.
Out of sight from the street and resting beyond a long gated driveway, the private residence is secluded amid resort-like grounds and surrounded by famous neighbors — directly across the street is Jack Nicholson’s longtime main residence; also nearby are Warren Beatty’s massive mansion and Lana Del Rey’s multimillion-dollar compound.
Trimmed in green steel and redwood, the heavily modified architectural structure includes seven bedrooms and eight baths in over 7,300 square feet of living space. There are skylights and hardwood floors throughout, and glitzy amenities include a state-of-the-art Bel Air Circuit movie theater with a 15-foot screen and soda machine, plus an underground wine room — climate-controlled, naturally.
The front door opens into a double-height living room ideal for entertaining, complete with walls of glass spilling out to an al fresco dining deck. Back inside, a set of steps leads past a library and up to a dining room, which in turn abuts a sleekly contemporary kitchen outfitted with luxe stainless appliances. Overlooking the living room is a mezzanine level holding a family room with its own cantilevered balcony; the home’s entire third level encompasses a sumptuous master suite with a sitting room, copper-faced fireplace, gym, steam shower, sauna and two rooftop decks offering up mountain views. A spa-like bath is equipped with a concrete soaking tub set beneath a big window.
Outside are lush, ultra-private grounds laden with custom amenities. A kitchen and wood-burning fireplace are great for outdoor catering, a firepit lounge area is perfect for s’mores, and a hepatica leaf-shaped pool boasts an “underwater viewing room.” Kids will love the trio of whimsical treehouses, which are connected by a suspension bridge. Adults may favor the putting green and the detached four-car garage. There are also guest quarters and an “art cabin,” per the listing.
Born in Australia but bred in New York, Flea remains best known as a founding member and bassist of L.A.-based rock band Red Hot Chili Peppers, whose recordings have garnered them six Grammy awards and induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. The 59-year-old has also dabbled in acting, with roles in more than 20 films and TV shows including “Suburbia,” “Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas” and “The Big Lebowski.” Flea cofounded the Silverlake Conservatory of Music, a nonprofit music education organization for underprivileged children; in 2019, he published “Acid for the Children,” a memoir of his early life.
Josh Altman, Matt Altman and Sam Collins of the Altman Brothers Team at Douglas Elliman were the listing agents; Sherri Rogers and Anthony Stellini of Compass jointly repped the buyer with Arash Ehsani.