BRET SABERHAGEN, two-time Cy Young Award-winning pitcher with the Kansas City Royals, and his wife, Janeane, are building a $2-million home in a new, gated development at Lake Sherwood in eastern Ventura County.
Grading has begun on the Saberhagens' residence, which, sources say, will be the first custom home at the 1,900-acre Lake Sherwood Country Club being developed by billionaire David Murdock just south of Westlake in Thousand Oaks.
Expected to be completed in December, the single-story, 8,570-square-foot home will have six bedrooms, a large exercise room and a game room with a theater that will seat 20.
The ranch-style house will also have a swimming pool and spa, a pool pavilion, a basketball court and a batting cage for Saberhagen.
"It will be our main residence when baseball's done. When the season's over, I'll be out here three to four months of the year," the right-hander said.
"(The Saberhagens) have a home in Kansas City but they also spend a lot of time out here, because they're both from the San Fernando Valley and their families are here," said Vicki Langberg of Firestone, James Interiors, a division of Design 1.
The couple, who have two young children, chose to build at Lake Sherwood because of its proximity to the San Fernando Valley and its golf, tennis and clubhouse facilities, said Jeanne James, who designed the home's interiors.
The house will be one of about 600 residences in the completed development. The first 20 production houses were under construction late last fall, with 12 in escrow at about $1 million each.
Actress PRISCILLA PRESLEY has been having security fences built around the four-acre Lake Arrowhead estate she bought before Christmas for $1.24 million, sources say.
The house is estimated to be 4 years old and has a small theater in its 6,000 square feet. A local realtor described it as having a Hansel-and-Gretel look, with a roof that appears to be thatched.
"That type of roof line, which I'd call European-style, is getting to be popular up here," he added.
The home is behind gates at the end of a cul-de-sac on land zoned for horses.
Presley started looking for a vacation retreat in the San Bernardino Mountains last spring, when she listed her two-acre Montecito home. It's still on the market at $2,375,000.
Her main residence is in Beverly Hills.
BRIAN GRAZER, Ron Howard's partner in Imagine Entertainment (which produced the feature films "Parenthood" and "Kindergarten Cop"), had a $2.61-million offer accepted in probate court a few days ago for a parcel facing the water in Malibu Colony, sources say.
"The price means that Malibu Colony beachfront property now costs $94,000 a front foot," a Malibu realtor explained.
The site is next door to the home Grazer shares with his wife, two children and a dog. He bought the property as a play yard for his family, sources said.
LIBERACE's home in the Hollywood Hills from 1959 to 1979 has been listed at $3,495,000.
The gated, 12,000-square-foot mansion has five bedrooms, two servants' quarters, 10 baths, a sewing room, a theater/music studio, billiard/game room, gym, two kitchens, two formal dining rooms and many balconies overlooking the city-to-ocean views.
The late entertainer had a wet bar built there in the shape of a piano keyboard, and he had a picture of a piano painted on the bottom of the swimming pool. He also had a pipe organ and several chandeliers installed in the living room.
Dana Brockway of Prudential Rodeo Realty has the listing.
The BEVERLY HILLS HOTEL will not close for renovations, as the New York Post reported in late December, a spokeswoman for the landmark said last week.
"We've been flooded with phone calls since that item was published," she said, "but the hotel will remain open and operational during all renovation phases."
Renovations have been ongoing there, in fact, since 1986, under several different ownerships. Representatives of the current owner, the SULTAN OF BRUNEI, just announced plans for further refurbishing.
"Most recently, several of the (21) bungalows and some of the (268) guest rooms were redone, with a spa and lap pool added to Bungalow No. 5 for (publishing magnate) WALTER ANNENBERG, who stays there five to six weeks every summer," the spokeswoman said. Bungalow No. 5 rents for $1,750 a night for one bedroom or $2,750 a night for all four of its bedrooms.
Most of the public areas also have been redecorated.
A team of architects, general contractors and design consultants is expected to complete a study in June to determine necessary structural modifications to the 79-year-old hotel.