Turnover in the high-end sector of the real estate market can be quite brisk, even in the world’s wealthiest neighborhoods. Take this mansion in Atherton, whose zip code is frequently ranked as the #1 richest in all the country. Built on speculation by a local developer, the nearly 12,500 sq. ft. behemoth was completed barely six months ago — in early 2019 — and has already changed hands twice.
The mansion’s first owner was biopharma industry veteran Kevin Young, who paid $23.5 million in March 2019, never moved in, and flipped the property just three months later for exactly $25 million. And the premium-paying buyers — the home’s current owners, for the moment — are married Seattle-based power couple Hans Bishop and Kate James, who originally hail from London.
James, who formerly served as chief communications officer for the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, also spent years as a high-ranking exec with UK education giant Pearson, a role where she oversaw communications, marketing and branding for the entire company. Today she serves on the board of Vital Voices, a powerful Washington D.C.-based non-profit that works with women leaders around the globe in the areas of economic empowerment and human rights.
Bishop, meanwhile, was recently appointed CEO of biotech startup Grail, a unicorn that — despite being founded only four years ago — has already amassed nearly $2 billion in investment capital from the likes of Jeff Bezos. And until early 2019, he was CEO and President of Juno Therapeutics, guiding the company through its eye-popping $9 billion sale to Celgene. Last year, the exceedingly well-compensated Bishop reportedly scored a $287 million payday on the heels of his company’s massive biotech buyout.
Spanning three full floors, Bishop and James’s new Atherton manse lies on a pancake-flat one-acre lot that is walled, gated, and camera-watched for maximum security. The impressive but architecturally indeterminate structure, vaguely Tudor-esque in style, includes a double-height glass entryway with gold-hued hardwood floors and contemporary finishes. The adjacent main floor gallery leads past the formal dining room, study and maid’s bedroom suite before spilling into the great room, which is equipped with a vaulted ceiling, fireplace and foldaway glass doors to the backyard.
The chic kitchen features custom cabinetry, marble countertops and top-of-the-line appliances, while the nearby family room has another fireplace and walls of glass. Upstairs are four family bedrooms — all of them with ensuite baths and walk-in closets — and a bonus space/attic area for storage. The master suite has its own separate wing with a private gallery, and convenient access to the mansion’s lower levels are provided by two separate staircases and an elevator.
Entirely devoted to recreation, the subterranean lower level is outfitted with a home theater, gym, spa-like gym bathroom, games room, enormous wet bar and a wine room with wine gallery. There’s also a guest suite for a lucky overnight visitor and a substantial fireplace for chilly nights.
The compound’s immaculate grounds include carefully maintained hedgerows, broad swathes of grassy lawn and a half-court sports court. There’s also a detached three car garage, a motorcourt that can easily accommodate another dozen vehicles, a firepit, water features, an entertaining pavilion, and a swimmer’s pool with inset spa. Tucked into a far corner of the property, flanked by a half-dozen trees, is a pebble “dining terrace” with a custom table that can easily seat 30 of the owner’s closest friends. Directly overlooking the pool area is a 1,200+ sq. ft. pool house with its own lounge, fireplace, eat-in kitchen, dining and living rooms, guest bedroom suite and built-in BBQ station.
The new James-Bishop estate is located on what is arguably one of Atherton’s most prestigious streets, where some of the neighbors include Oracle CEO Mark Hurd, Netflix communications chief Rachel Whetstone and Yasmin Lukatz, a stepdaughter of multibillionaire casino kingpin Sheldon Adelson.