Just 52 days after it was first listed with a nearly $49 million ask, a lavish home in Laguna Beach’s exclusive Emerald Bay enclave has sold for $43.5 million — Orange County’s priciest residential real estate transaction so far this year. The sale also sets a square footage price record for new construction in the area, at $8,733 per square foot.
But it’s not quite the most ever paid for an O.C. home. That milestone occurred last November, when a billionaire hedge funder doled out $70 million for a nearly 18,000-square-foot mansion in the guard-gated Irvine Cove community, topping the recent $61 million transfer of a house in nearby Newport Coast.
Records show the Emerald Bay buyer is an LLC easily linked to Las Vegas’ Fertitta family, which is currently headed by family patriarchs Frank Fertitta III and his younger brother Lorenzo. The Fertitta brothers are both billionaires and are widely known for their ownership of Station Casinos in Vegas, as well their former ownership of the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC), which they sold in 2016 for $4 billion.
Built over five years and completed in 2022, the beachfront house was developed on spec by David Wojtaszek of Divita Builders, who bought the lot for $8.5 million in 2017. Designed by C.J. Light Associates, and resting on a nearly one-acre parcel overlooking the Pacific, the resort-like property includes a contemporary home with five bedrooms and 10 baths spread across almost 5,000 square feet, plus 1,000 square feet of outdoor space.
Inside, the interiors are decked out with brushed limestone floors, fabric and Venetian plaster wall treatments, Afromosia wood ceilings, limestone floors, walnut wood paneling and custom Gennaro lighting. Posh amenities range from a movie lounge and temperature-controlled wine wall, to a fitness center sporting an infrared sauna.
Additional highlights include a gourmet kitchen equipped with top-tier Gaggenau appliances, custom walnut cabinetry and a a titanium granite island with a walnut-clad eat-in bar, along with a sumptuous master retreat sporting a private ocean-facing patio with fire-pit, an oversized walk-in closet with laundry and coffee stations, and a spa-inspired bath outfitted with a soaking tub and steam shower. Outdoors, the grounds host an in-ground stone spa and an an al fresco dining terrace with a built-in barbecue.
Rounding it all out: a Savant smart-home system and a four-car garage boasting two electric vehicle charging stations, plus an $8,173 annual HOA fee allowing Emerald Bay residents access to a private beach, junior Olympic-size pool, tennis courts, parks and playgrounds.
It’s not yet clear which member of the Fertitta family now holds the keys to this new home, but it’s worth noting that Frank Fertitta already owns a lavish oceanfront mansion in Emerald Bay. So does Delise Sartini, Frank and Lorenzo’s older sister, making Lorenzo the only sibling without Emerald Bay digs — at least until now.