The Brentwood hills are alive with the sound of rain — green rain. Yes, rich folks are making major money moves in the foothills just north of Sunset Boulevard, particularly in one neighborhood pocket where we have seen a whole spat of eight-figure sales over the past couple years. Heck, even Justin Bieber is reportedly considering a fancy house in this particular ‘hood.
And if this area is good enough for the Biebs, it must be good enough for anyone, right? Right.
A large contemporary mansion that sits directly across the street from an even larger structure owned by celebrity music manager Scooter Braun recently sold for $12,500,000 in a quiet off-market deal. Though the buyers’ identities are well-shielded behind a corporate entity, Yolanda eventually discovered that they are Canada-based couple David Cohen and his longtime wife Diane. Our Mr. Cohen is a mining tycoon — meaning he literally owns gold mines and stuff — who is also one of Canada’s most successful oil and gas entrepreneurs.
The Cohens, who have been married for several decades and have two grown children, were both born and raised in South Africa (as were their kids). Actually, the family did not move to Canada until 1994. While in Canada (British Columbia, specifically), Mr. Cohen co-founded Gold Wheaton Gold Corp, which was sold in 2011 for $1 billion and he also co-founded Northern Orion Resources Inc., which was sold for in 2007 for $1.5 billion. He has since founded a bunch of other companies. Yolanda does not know what Mr. Cohen’s net worth is, but suffice to say that this guy has a lot of money.
Now then, a $12.5 million house in Brentwood is not a particularly unusual thing. But there were a couple facts about this sale that Yolanda found a bit odd. For one, the house only has three bedrooms. And a $12.5 million three-bedroom house is a very, very unusual thing, y’all. Even for LA.
The other oddity is that this house sold for $7.2 million only four years ago (in late 2013), and Yolanda happens to know that the woman who bought it then — LA-based heiress/art dealer Maggie Kayne — changed very little, though she did have it photographed for Architectural Digest in 2015. So at first blush, it seems as though the Cohens overpaid for this property by several million dollars.
But whatever, Yolanda thought. This is LA, and people happily overpay for stuff all the damn time. The Cohens are super-rich — maybe they just fell in love with the house and had to have it at any price.
Not so quick. Turns out, kiddies, there is more to this tale than meets the proverbial eye. As we were researching the Cohens in preparation for our story, we discovered that the couple have a famous adult daughter named Yael Cohen. As it turns out — and as some of y’all may already know — Miss Cohen was married in 2014 to none other than Scooter Braun. The couple now have two young sons.
Get it now? We think the Cohens did not necessarily overpay for this property because they were obsessed with it. The primary reason, more likely, is that they wanted to live across the street from their grandkids (and daughter and son-in law, for that matter). Plus, like we say, a few million dollars likely means very little to people of their financial firepower.
Good gracious! Yolanda knew that Scooter Braun was a very rich man — after all, he manages the careers of superstars like the Biebs, Ariana Grande and until recently, Kanye West — but we had no idea that his wife came from such a wealthy family. But so she does.
By the way, Mrs. Braun is quite obviously very close with her parents. Before meeting and marrying Mr. Braun, she was already famous for starting a charity provocatively named Fuck Cancer after her mother — that would be Diane Cohen — was diagnosed with breast cancer. Our Mrs. Cohen eventually made a full recovery, thankfully.
Time for a look at grandma & grandpa’s baller new architectural house! Note: photos circa 2013.
According to property records, the contemporary crib was originally built in 1952. Yolanda thinks it may once have been just a regular ol’ mid-century modern, but in 2001 it was completely overhauled and expanded by Michael Palladino of Richard Meier & Partners Architects. If that firm name rings a bell, y’all may recall that this is the same architecture company that built a contemporary Malibu house that recently sold for a record-shattering $110 million.
Yolanda dug up an old listing from the time this place was last sold, back in late 2013. The listing gushes about the “Stunning architectural on lush grounds,” but also warns that “There are only 3 bedrooms in the house so it is ideal for the art collecting couple that has style.”
We do not know if the Cohens are art collectors, but they certainly seem to have to have style. Their new house sits on nearly a full acre of land — and yes, the grounds are incredibly lush. A gated driveway leads to the motorcourt and garages, and out back is a long swimmer’s pool. Yolanda loves it, but we would advise the Cohens to change the color of the water — green is just so icky. But we digress.
The mansion-sized 8,627-square-foot structure has a large library, fireplace-equipped living and family rooms, walls of glass, and wide expanses of white walls. Pefect for some modern art, eh?
An ultra-slim corkscrew staircase leads to the second floor.
As it turns out, the master suite comprises the entire upstairs and includes a bedroom with sitting area, fireplace, and walls of glass. The bathroom has dual vanities, the closet can easily accommodate a collector’s designer wardrobe, and there is even a second living room (below).
Maybe the Cohens like to entertain in their boudoir? Hey, no judging.
Also on the premises is a gym. Various French-style doors and disappearing walls of glass lead to the home’s spacious balconies, one of which has a tree growing right through it. Well, we never!
Perhaps Yolanda’s favorite part of the estate are the park-like grounds, which encompass a wide swath of grassy lawn, secluded stone pathways, maze-like hedges, and various hidden sitting areas. Damn, the Cohen grandchildren are gonna be so spoiled growing up here. We still have fond memories of visiting our grandma’s house as a child — we cannot fathom how cool it would’ve been if she owned this place!
We digress. In addition to their daughter and son-in-law, some of the Cohens’ nearest new Brentwood neighbors include actor John Travolta, NBA star LeBron James, and makeup mogul Jamie Kern Lima.
A thorough scrub through property records reveals that this is not the only LA-area property owned by Mr. and Mrs. Cohen. Back in late 2014, records show they used an entity called “Black Pine Property LLC” to pay $8,400,000 for an oceanfront home in Malibu. The small (yet exorbitantly expensive) pad has 3 beds and 3 baths in just 1,899-square-feet of living space and is located on coveted Malibu Road, home to a glorious stretch of dazzling sand.
Yolanda’s calculations show that the Cohens have now spent a gasp-worthy $20,900,000 on their two luxury California homes. And remember, y’all, these are not the only properties owned by the couple. According to reports, the couple also maintain multi-million dollar homes in the bustling city of Vancouver, British Columbia and in the ski resort town of Whistler.
It was at the Cohens’ Whistler home, Yolanda believes, where Yael Cohen married Scooter Braun in a lavish ceremony attended by Tom Hanks, Rita Wilson, Sophia Bush, Ed Sheeran, Carly Rae Jepson. And, of course, the Biebs — who blessed us all with a song.