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Entrepreneur Makes Another Buy

February 19, 1989|RUTH RYON | Times Staff Writer

Curtis Hendrix, the New York entrepreneur who last month joined with an investment group to buy the Sanwa Bank Building in downtown Los Angeles for $135 million, has purchased an 8,500-square-foot Holmby Hills house, once owned by the late Yul Brynner, for $4 million.

Jolene Schlatter, wife of producer George Schlatter, and Beverly Hills real estate broker Stan Herman were the sellers. They purchased the property from Tom McDermott, producer/president of Four-Star Productions.

Hendrix, who recently married actress/model Quin Kessler, plans to make good use of the 25-seat screening room and fully equipped gym.

Hendrix and his wife also maintain homes in Manhattan, Westhampton, N.Y. and Boca Raton, Fla.

Two Bunch Palms, a popular spa in Desert Hot Springs that was reputedly Al Capone's hideaway before it became a playground in the '30s and '40s for movie moguls and the Mafia, is in the process of being sold.

"We are buying about 75 acres in addition to the spa (on 27 acres) for expanded facilities and construction of 50 condos," said Steven Powers, of Pacific Land & Resorts in Century City. The spa already has 46 units, which Powers plans to remodel and sell, along with the new condos, but all would be rented out like hotel suites.

The spa has been owned since 1978 by Transam Ltd., which was solely owned by Bob Beaumont, a flamboyant developer who bought an entire warehouse of antiques to furnish the villas and a former casino, which he turned into a lounge with informal dining.

"He died, and we're buying the spa from his heirs," Powers said. "We're paying $6 million."

He expects escrow to close April 5, but the sale is subject to court approval, said trustee Mel Blum. A probate hearing is scheduled Feb. 28 in Reno.

Designer/builder Gail Claridge, who will appear before the end of the season as a designer in a segment of the TV show "Designing Women," says she has had hockey star Wayne Gretsky and heart throb Michael J. Fox as potential buyers of her Tarzana home, but she decided to subdivide the property and is now offering her house, on 3 1/2 acres, at $2.95 million.

Claridge says the house will be featured on the KABC-TV show "Home" sometime next week. It is adjacent to the late John Huston's 4 1/2-acre estate.

She has been restoring and expanding the Huston house for a developer who plans to use it as his main residence.

Claridge added a water wheel and 3,000 square feet to the 11,000-square-foot Huston house. "There is also a stream and a miniature train, which was Huston's and runs around the property," she said.

Joyce Rey and Cecelia Waeschle of Merrill Lynch/Rodeo Realty have the listing on Claridge's residence.

The late Frederick (Fritz) Loewe's Palm Springs estate has been put on the market for $4.5 million, complete with a bed and nightstand on a turntable for viewing the Coachella Valley or the cypress-lined gardens in the back yard.

Before the famous composer, of such mega hits (with lyricist Alan J. Lerner) as "My Fair Lady" and "Camelot," died at 86 a year ago this month, his desert property, known as "Seven Terraces" and "Little Camelot," was frequented by such stars as Greta Garbo, Red Skelton and Burgess Meredith.

The 2.5-acre property--with rose gardens, rock streams, a pool and spa--is being sold by Loewe's heirs through Mike Silverman of Beverly Hills, who once rented Garbo's Beverly Hills house to "My Fair Lady" star Rex Harrison.

Responding to a broker's recent claim that $55,000 is the highest monthly rental price ever paid for a single-family home in California, Kay Pick of Silverman's office says she leased a house in Beverly Hills during the past year to a Saudi at $175,000 a month.

"Rock and movie stars like Prince and Elton John pay a paltry $35,000 to $55,000," she said, chuckling. She claims that more than one Saudi has rented a house through the Silverman firm at $100,000 or more a month.

"The Estates of Beverly Hills," the $100 coffee-table book that was used as a brochure for that posh subdivision (er, community) Beverly Park, has been updated, and the second edition was put on bookstore shelves last week.

"We took some houses out, put others in. It will be a 'must read' to see who's in and who's out," Beverly Hills broker Jeff Hyland said. Hyland and Charles Lockwood co-authored it.

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