Over the years, flamboyant British interior designer Martyn Lawrence Bullard has worked on homes across the globe for celebrities that span the demographic gamut — from the Kardashians to Cher, from Ozzy Osbourne to members of the Saudi royal family. But one of his favorite projects might be located in Malibu, where the longtime fan of (decorative) glitz and drama was granted free reign to unleash his maximalist prowess on a clifftop estate.
The homeowners, Judah and Astrid Hertz, were introduced to Bullard by their Malibu neighbor Kid Rock, who had previously worked with the designer on his own home renovation. The married couple — she’s a fashion stylist, he’s a commercial real estate developer and one of Downtown L.A.’s biggest landlords — wanted something “transportive” and Bullard eagerly obliged, whipping up a dream home in his designer mixing bowl, invigorating the project with a healthy heaping of Indonesian-flavored decorative spice.
While many wealthy homeowners have a distinct look in mind and guide their designers to achieve it, the Hertzes took a step back and let Bullard do all the heavy lifting. “[Martyn] never had to convince us about any of his design decisions, which were always right,” Astrid told Elle Decor in 2014.
Bullard’s whimsical result undeniably brings a heaping dose of Bali over to humble Malibu, and the residence looks far more like a dreamy boutique hotel than your typical L.A. estate. But it wasn’t easy getting to that point; the original southwestern-style house on the property, which Bullard cattily dismisses as “[looking] like a giant Taco Bell,” had to be taken down to the studs and expensively rebuilt. Judah Hertz acquired the 1.22-acre blufftop estate in 2007 for exactly $10 million, records reveal, and likely spent many untold millions more on the custom remodel.
Highlights of the Hertz estate include a palm-lined driveway, a lighted tennis court with adjoining pavilion, an infinity-edged pool, and spectacular coastline views. The U-shaped house itself wraps around a central courtyard anchored by two parallel reflecting pools and eight evenly-spaced palms.
Inside, exotic amenities include an 18th century Indonesian tribal house that now lives in the powder room, plus a one-of-a-kind master bed sculpted from the façade of an Indonesian palace. But the place isn’t all just an offbeat homage to southeast Asian feudal design — there are also opulent furnishings imported from Morocco, Portugal, England, and the Netherlands.
The home’s enormous great room encompasses a den, dining area, and gourmet kitchen with butler’s pantry. One wing of the structure holds two guest bedrooms; the second wing contains an ocean-view owner’s retreat with covered patio and a study. The backyard additionally holds a patio, spa, alfresco dining areas, and a cabana.
All those amenities, and many more, will run a billionaire buyer $65 million — still a lot of money, even by Malibu standards. But then again, enjoying a five-star Bali vacation while never leaving the Pacific Coast Highway could be seen as a priceless treat.