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HOT PROPERTY

$15-Mil Sale Is Biggest in Years

August 08, 1993|RUTH RYON | TIMES STAFF WRITER

GREENACRES, the Beverly Hills-area estate built by silent screen star HAROLD LLOYD and renovated by movie mogul TED FIELD, has been sold for nearly $18 million, including furnishings, sources say.

The sale is also one of the half-dozen biggest in U.S. history for a private residence, sources said, and is the largest in Southern California since producer David Geffen's $47.5-million purchase of film pioneer Jack Warner's Beverly Hills estate in May, 1990.

The house was sold for about $15 million, with furnishings costing an additional $2.5 million, a source said. The sale involved a trade of a ranch in Riverside said to be worth about $1 million.

Field, head of Interscope films ("Three Men and a Baby," "The Hand That Rocks the Cradle") and an heir to the Marshall Field department store fortune, sold Greenacres to Ron Burkle, a private investor who plays the commodities markets and has interests in car dealerships, a candy company and the California supermarket chain Food 4 Less.

Burkle had been living with his family in the Inland Empire and bought Greenacres because he is moving his corporate headquarters from Claremont to Los Angeles. "He's intending to spend a lot more time in L.A., because he believes in the city," an associate said.

"His Food 4 Less Foundation pledged $10 million over the next three years to pay for the L.A. city schools' athletic program. He also thinks it's a good time to invest in L.A. because the market provides such value and he's able to get a wonderful landmark."

Harold Lloyd built the 36,000-square-foot villa on nearly 16 acres in 1927. He lived there until he died in 1971. The estate, which once had a canoe-water course and a nine-hole golf course, was subdivided in 1975, and the house, on five acres, was sold in 1979.

The couple who bought it later divorced, and Field purchased the estate in a court-ordered sale for $6.5 million in 1986. Field spent millions in renovations, then entertained lavishly in the home with its fountains, gardens, aviary, tennis court and child's thatched cottage.

Field, one of the top five individual donors to the Democratic Party, hosted President Clinton's biggest pre-election fund-raisers there. Now, having divorced his third wife, Field has moved to a smaller house nearby that he has leased at $40,000 a month, sources say.

Greenacres was listed in 1990 at $55 million and was later reduced to $39 million.

Stephen Shapiro at Stan Herman/Stephen Shapiro & Associates represented Field in the sale, and Ron De Salvo of Douglas Properties represented Burkle.

PICKFAIR, the honeymoon home of early film stars Mary Pickford and Douglas Fairbanks Sr. that was almost completely demolished and rebuilt after it was purchased by entertainer PIA ZADORA, was being prepared for a reopening party last week, sources say.

The 3.1-acre estate, which Zadora bought from Lakers' owner Jerry Buss for just under $7 million in 1988, has been a construction project of Zadora's and her husband, businessman Meshulam Riklis, since 1989.

Now that it's completed, one of the only reminders of Pickfair is a large letter "P" that is said to grace the main entrance. Of course, the "P" also stands for "Pia," who owns the 30,000-square-foot villa, with its 15 bedrooms and 21 baths, as her "sole and separate property."

A Woodland Hills home that was built in 1928 and was owned first by MICHAEL CURTIZ, director of the classic film "Casablanca" (1942), and later by Oscar-winning actor Gene Hackman is on the market for the first time in about 20 years at $2,475,000.

Curtiz owned the home for many years and used the estate as a weekend retreat for movie stars of his day.

The property was later subdivided, and the carriage house and stables were converted into private residences. An English Country-style manor house and pool house remain, on slightly more than two acres with a tennis court, pool and spa. The home also still has its original slate roof, leaded glass windows and cobblestone driveway and motor court.

Bunny and Jay Tennen of Jay Tennen & Associates, Woodland Hills, share the listing with David and Budge Offer of Jon Douglas Properties, Brentwood.

Beverly Hills real estate broker MIKE SILVERMAN--who has represented such stars as Cher, Frank Sinatra, Elton John, Prince, Kenny Rogers, Joan Crawford and Judy Garland since he established his business more than 35 years ago--has become affiliated with Jon Douglas Co.

Silverman will maintain his longtime offices at 250 N. Canon Drive until the end of this year, but his firm is already operating as Mike Silverman Estates, a Jon Douglas Co.

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