She may not be a household name, but Forbes says her $1.7 billion net worth makes Ana Lucia Villela one of the world’s richest Brazilians. The philanthropic heiress came into great wealth at a very early age, following her parents’ unexpected deaths in a 1982 plane crash, inheriting a major stake in one of Latin America’s biggest banks. As such, it’s really no surprise that Villela can afford to pay well into the eight figures for an all-new modern farmhouse compound in prime Los Angeles.
While the listing says the property is located in Bel Air, the L.A. Times’ mapping project technically places it in the adjacent neighborhood of Little Holmby, another upscale enclave that’s not quite as famous or as expensive as Bel Air, but still remarkably plush. Originally offered at $22.5 million last fall, the spec-built house languished on and off the market for nearly a year before selling to Villela at a heavily discounted $17.5 million. That number may still rank it as the priciest Little Holmby home ever sold, eclipsing a $16.8 million mansion just down the road.
Situated on a very busy street but carefully hidden from sight between high walls and hedges, the three-story house offers 8 bedrooms and 10 bathrooms in roughly 13,000 square feet – large even by L.A. mansion standards. All of that space is accessed by various staircases or a high-speed elevator.
The home’s all-black façade is carefully balanced by a healthy heaping of natural wood accents. One of the property’s most interesting features is the entryway, which is flanked by an unusual picket-fencing design motif that carries on throughout the entire structure, and the foyer also features a stunningly monolithic three-story atrium with a 32-foot waterfall. Directly overhead hangs a custom chandelier imported from Greece.
The rest of the home is similarly awash in bespoke details – there are petrified elm floors, fossilized limestone from Indonesia and a kitchen with wireless charging stations embedded into its black walnut island. And yes, the house even features a dedicated dog spa for keeping Fido perpetually groomed.
Also on tap are an executive office, a gym and a movie theater. Naturally, the open-concept living and dining spaces are vast and primed for grand entertaining, and walls of glass effortlessly spill out to the resort-quality backyard, where an enormous pool and outdoor kitchen are primed for further dreamy relaxation. Upstairs, the primary suite offers a vaulted walnut ceiling, a fireplace, a private balcony overlooking the pool, a dressing room and a massive bathroom with tile imported from Spain and a 625-pound, cast-iron soaking tub.
Records reveal this is not the first U.S. home ever bought by Villela. Way back in 2012, she paid exactly $5 million for a traditional plantation-style estate on the Hawaiian island of Kauai, very close to estates owned by fellow billionaires like Oprah Winfrey and Mark Zuckerberg. That landlocked property, which features a 6,000-square-foot house on 13 lush acres, was sold at a notable loss in 2019 — to a non-famous couple who paid just $3.4 million for the place.
One possible reason for Villela’s relocation to L.A. is that she is married to Marcos Nisti, an increasingly prolific film producer who co-created the hit web program “Aruanas,” a Portuguese-language drama series that debuted in 2019. Villela and Nisti also co-founded the Alana Foundation, a philanthropic organization headquartered in California’s Silicon Valley. In 2019, Alana gifted nearly $30 million to the Massachusetts Institute of Technology; the gift helped create MIT’s Alana Down Syndrome Center.