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HOT PROPERTY

$7-Mil Home to 'Diet' For

August 15, 1993|RUTH RYON | TIMES STAFF WRITER

JENNY and SID CRAIG, who built their Del Mar-based Jenny Craig Inc. into an international weight-loss empire, have purchased a Rancho Santa Fe home for nearly its $6.9-million asking price.

The Craigs opened their first weight-loss centers in Australia in 1983 and expanded to Los Angeles in 1985.

Today, their publicly traded company, which offers a weight-management plan tied to its own food products, is one of the largest chains in the weight-loss industry, with more than 800 centers worldwide and close to half a billion dollars in revenue.

The Craigs, who are in their early 60s, bought a Country French-style, 16,000-square-foot home on eight acres with a tennis court, pool, pool house and guest house. The main house also has a billiard room.

The home--built about five years ago for Jim Crowley, a private investor who has owned numerous car dealerships throughout California, and his wife, Mary Beth--also has a 14-car garage, which appealed to Sid Craig. Like Jim Crowley, who relocated to an Italian villa he and his wife bought in Rancho Santa Fe, Sid Craig also collects vintage cars.

The Craigs, who also own several race horses, have a beach home near the racetrack in Del Mar, and they have a 15,000-square-foot home in Aspen.

They're in the process of moving into their new Rancho Santa Fe home but are already talking about adding on a bowling alley, gym, other guest facilities and a ballroom. Sid Craig was an Arthur Murray Dance Studio instructor before meeting Jenny in 1970. They were married in 1979.

Architect Robert Earl designed the home for the Crowleys and may be participating in some early planning for the additions, sources say. The Crowleys were represented by Coldwell Banker, Rancho Santa Fe, and the Craigs were represented by Mederan Associates, San Diego.

ROSS BAGDASARIAN--who is continuing his father's chipmunk cartoon creations by writing, producing and playing the voices of Alvin, Theodore and Simon--has sold his Santa Monica pied-a-terre and moved his office to his main residence in Montecito.

The Santa Monica home is in an area known as "the Old Beach Tract," where many artists, musicians and people in the entertainment industry are refurbishing turn-of-the-century houses.

The Craftsman-style house, which Bagdasarian sold, has three bedrooms and one bath in about 1,400 square feet. Built in 1905, the house also has a sitting room, porch with a hammock overlooking the sand and water; coffered ceilings, and its original, hardwood floors.

Bagdasarian bought the house when he purchased his Montecito estate about five years ago. He sold the Santa Monica home for about $550,000, according to public records.

The chipmunks, which will mark their 35th anniversary this fall, have continuing programs on Fox Television, four new videos in distribution by Disney and an upcoming album with pop saxophonist Kenny G.

Ron Abrams, with Fred Sands Estates, represented Bagdasarian in the sale, and Alison St. Onge of Fred Sands' Santa Monica office represented the buyers, a Los Angeles family who bought the home as a weekend retreat.

SHANNEN DOHERTY, who plays Brenda Walsh on "Beverly Hills, 90210," has leased a house for a year in the Beverly Hills Post Office area, sources say.

The 22-year-old actress, who portrays a goody-goody character on TV, was the subject of an eviction petition in March, for apartment damage and non-payment of rent, and in May, her ex-fiance, Max Factor heir Dean Jay Factor, sought a domestic-violence restraining order against her, contending, among other things, that she tried to run him down with a car.

Doherty leased a four-bedroom, 3,500-square-foot house, which is a couple of years old, at nearly $5,400 a month, sources say. The gated home has city views.

Victoria Lockwood and Barry Peele of Fred Sands' Directors office had the listing, and Helene Sherman, with Jon Douglas Co.'s Beverly Hills office, represented Doherty in the deal.

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