(UPDATE 9/4/19: A previous version of this story labeled Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi as the buyer of this Venice compound, but a knowledgable source now says his family is merely renting the premises from the current owner.)
The trickle of tech money into the Los Angeles real estate market has rapidly evolved into a gushing waterfall, as record-breaking home prices everywhere attest — particularly those on the desirable Westside, near L.A.’s so-called Silicon Beach.
Take this dramatic Marmol Radziner-designed architectural compound in Venice, the majorly gentrified yet still somewhat gritty seaside neighborhood just south of Santa Monica. Custom-built in 2007 as the personal home of famed architect Ron Radziner, the property was sold off-market in 2013 to actress Natasha Gregson Wagner. The $4.4 million sale price, which many real estate watchers thought outrageous at that time, was more than double what any other home on this particular street had ever fetched and easily ranked as an inland Venice record.
But scarcely six years later, Gregson Wagner has resold that same gunmetal grey house — in another off-market deal — for a whopping $6.8 million, simultaneously reaping a multimillion dollar profit and once again shattering local records. Unsurprisingly, the surge price-paying buyer is cloaked by a mysterious entity that links back to a law firm in Northern California’s Silicon Valley known for representing some of the world’s top technology entrepreneurs.
Extensively engineered to maximize available space and indoor-outdoor living on a narrow lot, the ultra-contemporary house has two rectangular living expanses placed at opposite ends of the property, each running parallel to the other and bridged by a sunken kitchen overlooking a pool that visually unites the building forms.
The southern living expanse, a glassy one-story structure, contains a gigantic great room that combines both formal living and dining areas. From there, a hallway leads directly to the expansive kitchen, which acts as the hub of the residence. The boxy space features custom cabinetry, high-end appliances, a deluxe breakfast nook and walls of glass that directly overlook the outdoor swimmer’s pool and an al fresco dining area with a hulking outdoor fireplace.
The home’s larger northern wing is more casual and includes an attached two-car garage — accessible from a discreet alleyway behind the property — plus a family room and office. The upstairs level contains all four of the 4,000 sq. ft. structure’s beds, including three family bedrooms — all of which share a single bath — and the expansive master suite, which includes a walk-in closet and spa-style bath with soaking tub.
Naturally, the entire quarter-acre property is walled, gated, and protected by a high-tech security system. The house itself is all but invisible from the street out front, visually obscured behind a wall of tall sycamore and oak trees. Native reeds and grasses make the place feel like a lush oasis amidst the concrete desert that is L.A.
As the elder daughter of late actress Natalie Wood, who infamously drowned under mysterious circumstances just off Catalina Island, Gregson Wagner has been in the public eye all her life. Now in her late 40s and married to actor Barry Watson, the part-time actress has reaped a small fortune in recent years through a series of shrewd property investments. Back in the 1990s, she paid $1.2 million for a wee Malibu cottage that she sold back in 2013 at a multimillion-dollar profit. She continues to own a quaint residential getaway in beautiful Ojai, Calif.