Yesterday we discussed a rather stunning Brentwood estate sold by powerhouse entertainment industry exec Dana Walden and her longtime hubby Matt. And we were a bit perplexed because the Waldens seemed to have vanished without a trace — at least as far as property records are concerned.
Yolanda found it difficult to believe that an important lady like Mrs. Walden would deign to rent some stranger’s house, so we supposed she was doing a leaseback on her old home through the holidays.
We also supposed that the Waldens would be in the mood to downsize their residential circumstances. The soon-to-be empty nesters have two teenage daughters, one of whom is away at college in New York and the other presumably soon to follow.
But Yolanda was proven utterly wrong on both counts. Shoot, we should’ve remembered the Golden Rule: when you’re one of the mightiest (and wealthiest) CEOs in media, never ever downsize. Especially not in this town, where image is everything.
After pullin’ out ye olde magnifying glass and porin’ through records, we discovered that Mrs. Walden used a mysteriously-named trust to quietly pay a whopping $19,000,000 for a huge new Brentwood mansion. This transaction went down way back in April (2018).
Well, spank Yolanda’s fanny! Mrs. Walden is loaded. Well everyone already knew that, of course, but we mean she’s seriously loaded. Brentwood is one of the most expensive neighborhoods in LA, y’all, but $19 million is still one fat hunk of cheddar. Even for out there! In fact, this is one of the area’s five biggest deals of 2018.
Before we get to dissectin’ her decadent digs, a wee background on Mrs. Walden, who had an interesting — some might say highly unorthodox — climb up the corporate ladder.
Now in her mid-50s, Mrs. Walden is one of those rare LA natives. She grew up in Studio City, in a well-to-do Jewish family, and rode show hunters competitively as a child. After matriculating to USC, Mrs. Walden earned a Communications degree and entered the PR world. The lady first worked as the late Larry Goldman‘s assistant — “I was an awful assistant,” she admits — before joining Arsenio Hall‘s production company.
In 1992, Mrs. Walden scored a PR gig at 20th Century TV. Two years later came a pivotal point in her career — she refers to it as her Jerry Maguire moment — when she gave a surprise presentation to studio execs during a company retreat. That moment led to her being named a programming exec, at which she excelled. In 1999, she and Gary Newman were made co-CEOs of the Fox studio. And in 2014, the pair were promoted to chairperson-CEOs of Fox Television Group.
This October (2018) it was announced that Mrs. Walden will soon become chairwoman of the Disney Television Studios and the Disney-ABC Television Group. Quite a come up from those “awful assistant” days, huh?
In addition to her red-hot career, Mrs. Walden takes the time to serve on several boards: the Los Angeles Zoo, Live Nation Entertainment and Hulu among them. In her spare time, she enjoys skiing (she and Mr. Walden reportedly keep an Empire Pass condo in the winter resort town of Deer Valley, Utah).
But anyway, onto the real estate. Although the Brentwood mansion is brand-new, this is not a developer spec-special of the variety we normally discuss. Nope, this baby was custom-built over a 4+ year period by none other than Lindsey Buckingham of Fleetwood Mac fame and fortune.
Your gurl doesn’t know if Mr. Buckingham always intended to sell the property or if he and the missus simply got cold feet before moving in — our guess would be the former, but that’s just a guess — but either way, he appears to have realized a substantial profit on the land he paid $5,800,000 for back in 2012. Even with mountainous construction costs, we’d bet big doughnuts he still walked with millions.
On the whole, Yolanda is of the opinion that Mr. Buckingham did a good job designing this beast. We’re not crazy about the architectural style or the light fixtures inside, but that’s just personal preference.
Described as a “Modern Georgian Estate”, the very large house (the listing does not call out square footage, but records say it clocks in at 10,307) is situated north of Sunset Boulevard on one of Brentwood’s most prestigious streets. The nearly one-acre lot is narrow and deep, so the structure itself is set well back from the road and privately behind walls, gates, and tall hedges.
The staged interiors feature a neutral color scheme and honey-hued hardwood floors. A formal living room has a fireplace and large windows, the formal dining room opens to a large patio.
There are not one but two kitchens: the first a “chef’s” kitchen and the other a “catering” kitchen. Fancy! Both, of course, are outfitted with every conceivable high-end appliance.
Not to be outdone, there are also two separate family rooms: one called the “adult” room for its marble wet bar. The other one — the kids’ room, we’re guessing — makes do with a fireplace, vaulted ceiling and a disappearing wall of glass that leads out back. But no booze. Boo.
There are six beds and a total of 7.75 baths contained within these walls. The master bedroom is large enough to host a dinner party (with food from the catering kitchen) and sports his-and-hers bathrooms and closets.
Numerous other amenities include a library, gym, massage room, two laundry rooms and much more.
The resort-like backyard features al fresco dining spaces, a firepit, and a large rectangular swimming pool with inset spa. There’s also a huge grassy lawn and views over the surrounding canyon. Oh, and beyond the pool is a wee cabana with a sitting area and a bathroom. Perfect for those times when you don’t wanna traipse your wet feet through a $19 million house just to go potty.
Alright kids, that’s all Yolanda has time for today. We’re off to hit the malls and we ain’t afraid of them crowds. In case anyone was wondering, our innovative strategy — and we put a lot of thought into this — is to shop until we (literally) drop and the paramedics wheel us out of Saks on an extra wide gurney.
Listing & Selling agent: David Offer, Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices