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Dirt Digs In: Linda May

Linda May, of Hilton & Hyland, has dominated prestigious neighborhoods from Beverly Hills to Malibu and everything in between, amassing over $4 billion dollars in sales. She’s gained recognition in marketing luxurious residential estates with a rich architectural and historical pedigree, as well as the city’s hotspot development opportunities.

Proven to be unstoppable, last year was one of May’s most successful years. Her most notable recent sales include: Bel-Air’s Bellagio Estate, Johnny Carson’s former Malibu estate and the Grey Estate in Holmby Hills. May only continues to thrive through her vast market knowledge, expansive network of contacts and accomplished experience as a foremost, Westside real estate broker. Currently, May represents a portfolio worth over $1 billion in pedigreed properties.

Her admiration for the arts and philanthropy is seen by her efforts with the LACMA, the L.A. Philharmonic, A Place Called Home, and as a Board Member of the Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts.

Describe the most beautiful room you’ve ever been in? The jaw-dropping Hall of Mirrors at Versailles!

What is your favorite architectural style? Architecture is my love language so it’s impossible to choose just one, but an authentic mid-century contemporary, or a John Wolfe regency, are probably my favorite styles. A Georgian manor house on exquisite grounds is a close third. The truth is, I love anything authentic that is really good.

What is your idea of the perfect view? The L.A. skyline at night from Sierra Towers.

What is your most cherished article of clothing? It’s not clothing, but my grandmother’s jewelry collection comes to mind.

As a child, which room of the house did you spend the most time in? My mother’s closet.

What is the one thing you can’t live without? Hands down, my iPhone! It is my EVERYTHING and completely runs my life!

What qualities do you appreciate most in your friends? My dearest friends are authentic, thoughtful, supportive, and they make me laugh.

What is your greatest fear? The 405 Freeway at 5 P.M.

Which three people, living or dead, would you invite to your dinner party? Jackie Kennedy, Andy Warhol, and Bono. What a party!

What aspect of your personality has created the most problems for you in life? I’m a workaholic. I love my work and have a hard time putting it down. Just ask my husband.

Who is your favorite architect? It’s impossible to pick just one, but my current favorites are Frank Gehry, Mark Rios, and Kulapat Yantrasast. They are the explosive thinkers of today.

Which song always makes you cry? “Imagine” by John Lennon

At what point did you become an adult? When I realized I had to pay all my own bills.

When did you first fall in love? Watching Robert Redford in “The Way We Were.”

When was the last time you surprised yourself? When the COVID-19 pandemic hit, I couldn’t believe how quickly my team and I pivoted into our new normal. The way we’ve adapted to this change has actually enhanced our visibility and impact.

When do you feel powerful? I feel most powerful when after long days and late nights of arduous negotiations, a deal comes successfully together. I feel like soaring!

What is the most challenging thing about aging? Who’s aging?

What was desperately important to you when you were young that no longer seems quite so pressing? Five inch heels.

Which movie can you watch over and over again? “Law and Order.” It’s not a movie, but I’m addicted to the series and all its franchises. The perfect Sunday is a “Law and Order” marathon in bed.

What is your definition of luxury? Meditation, not driving my own car in L.A., and getting on a private plane that’s going anywhere.

What is your greatest extravagance? Time and space all to myself.

What’s the most widely held misconception about money? That it brings you happiness or solves all problems. All of the clichés about money are true.

What three things never fail to bring you pleasure? Postmates (iced decaf Americano delivered every morning), Uber, or going anywhere in the world that Gustavo Dudamel and the L.A. Philharmonic are performing.

What or who is the greatest love of your life? My husband, Jack Suzar, and my family.

When and where were you happiest? On my honeymoon. We got lost for three weeks going everywhere in Israel, Turkey, and Italy, and it was magic.

Which talent would you most like to have? Being as organized as Marie Kondo.

What do you consider your greatest achievement? My success in my career.

What’s your idea of an important achievement? The immense privilege of giving back to our community through the countless organizations close to my heart, especially Aviva, A Place Called Home, YOLA, and The Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts.

What is your most treasured possession? My business partner, Guy Levy.

Who are your heroes? There are too many heroines to name, but a few of them are Michelle Obama, Angela Merkel, and of course, Oprah.

What is your greatest regret? Not collecting more art throughout my life that I knew was fabulous and edgy when I first saw it and could afford it. I’m playing catch-up now.

What’s the most significant historical event that’s occurred over the course of your life? 9/11. It devastated our country and all Americans to the core, but it also united our nation in the most meaningful way. It reminded us what it means to be American, and I’ll never forget that moment in time

What is the biggest obstacle you’ve overcome in life? Learning social media.

What is a small kindness we can all extend to one another today? Instead of a hug, tell someone that you really love and appreciate them.