Apparently there’s no luxury market slowdown in the Hollywood Hills, where an essentially all-new mansion has sold for exactly $70 million. That number is by far a record for the area, utterly blowing away the previous highlighter — a Bird Streets mansion that sold in early 2020 for about $42 million. The big deal was first reported by The Real Deal.
Both those homes were developed on speculation by Canadian businessman Francesco Aquilini, and both were designed by Irish architect Paul McClean. The $70 million manor has been more than 10 years in the making; Aquilini bought the property in 2012 for $8.5 million from Richard Perry, an accomplished music producer best-known as the former partner of Jane Fonda. Built in 1942, the house was originally designed for Ronald Reagan and his first wife Jane Wyman.
According to permits and tax records, Aquilini subsequently spent tens of millions tearing down and rebuilding the existing house — a 6,000-square-foot, Bali-influenced structure — as a very contemporary, ultra-blocky mansion. Permits indicate the main house now spans at least 15,000 square feet, and there’s also a full basement level that may not be included in that total number, plus a separate garage wing that itself is the size of a small house.
Because the house was never on the market, you’ll have to use your imagination to picture the completed project. But in contrast to many of McClean’s previous efforts, which have occasionally been criticized for their austere look and all-white stone interiors, this place is filled with organic materials that provide some much-needed warmth. The home’s vast living spaces include lustrous hardwood floors and wooden ceiling treatments, plus a “floating” staircase sheathed in blonde wood, shimmering brightly against a dramatic wall of windows.
Both the mansion’s exterior fascia and the multiple fireplaces within are covered in cream-colored stucco. Walls of glass open to vast patios and an infinity-edge swimming pool. And from its hilltop knoll just above L.A.’s Sunset Strip, the house sports nearly 360-degree views of both city lights and mountains.
As first reported by the L.A. Times, the spendy buyer is business mogul Michael Rubin, the CEO of Fanatics — the world’s top provider of licensed sports merchandise. Now in his 50s, Rubin is worth some $10.2 billion, per Forbes. He’s also widely known for his annual Fourth of July “white parties” and is an avid trophy property collector — besides his new Hollywood digs, he also owns a $43 million penthouse in New York City. And last year, he paid exactly $50 million for the Hamptons estate of beleaguered property developer Ziel Feldman.
Branden and Rayni Williams of The Beverly Hills Estates held the Hollywood Hills listing; Kurt Rappaport of Westside Estate Agency repped the buyer.