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Playboy Expands His Playground

July 08, 2001|RUTH RYON | TIMES STAFF WRITER

Hugh Hefner has purchased a house in Holmby Hills for $4.5 million, real estate sources said.

The Playboy magazine founder, who lives in the nearby Playboy Mansion, bought the house as an investment, according to Dick Rosenzweig, executive vice president of Playboy Enterprises.

"He had been watching it for a while, and there was a point where he thought it was a good investment," Rosenzweig said.

Originally listed in May of 1999 at about $6.2 million, the 5,500-square-foot house, built in the 1950s, has five bedrooms and a large living room with a bar overlooking the pool and its 1.3-acre grounds.

"Holmby continues to be a premier area, and it's a good investment there when something comes up on over an acre at a price that is [relatively] reasonable," Rosenzweig said.

The house also has an eight-car garage and additional parking, but Rosenzweig said that Hefner is not planning to turn the property into a parking lot for the six-acre Playboy Mansion, where nighttime soirees, sometimes for more than 1,000 guests, have prompted neighbors to complain.

"He is not using his new property for parking, but he hasn't yet decided exactly how he will use it," Rosenzweig said.

Hefner, 75, has lived in the Playboy Mansion, owned by Playboy Enterprises, for three decades.

His wife, Kimberly, and their children live in a house next door to the mansion.

The couple, who are separated, bought that home in 1996 for $6.7 million.

The house Hefner just purchased had been empty since its seller, a retired producer-director, moved out of the area.

June Scott of June Scott Estates, a Coldwell Banker company in Beverly Hills, had the listing.

A Montecito home once owned by racing legend Andy Granatelli has been sold for about $30 million.

The buyer, Frank J. Caulfield, is a venture capitalist from the Silicon Valley.

The seller, James Q. Crow, is a founder and CEO of Level 3 Communications Inc., a telecommunications company based in Colorado.

In June, the company, which operates an Internet protocol-based fiber-optic network covering more than 20,000 route miles, announced that it would cut 1,400 jobs--24% of its workforce--from its global operations, because of the economic slowdown.

The Montecito home, on 12 acres, includes a 30,000-square-foot Italian-style villa, restored and updated in the early '90s by Granatelli and his wife, Dolly. The home was built in the 1920s for a New York banker by George Washington Smith.

The Granatellis added an indoor pool with a 5-to 15-mph wave machine and a 6,000-square-foot, dust-free building for his car collection. The three-story home, surrounded on three sides by a creek, has two elevators, nine chimneys, eight bedrooms, a guest house and acres of gardens.

Anastasia Soare, known as Hollywood's eyebrow queen because she has waxed the brows of such celebrities as Oprah Winfrey and Jennifer Lopez, has listed her Benedict Canyon home, which she redesigned, at slightly more than $1.1 million.

Soare is selling as she plans to travel worldwide marketing her makeup line, Anastasia, which comes with an eyebrow kit.

Built in 1926, Soare's home of three years has three bedrooms in nearly 2,300 square feet. The French-style home has a motor court, library with a fireplace; breakfast room, pool, spa and guest house with a loft. The air-conditioned home also has a sitting room off the master bedroom.

Since Soare moved from Romania to Los Angeles about a decade ago, she bought a Beverly Hills skin-and-body care salon, called it Anastasia, and attracted clients including Naomi Campbell, Helen Hunt and Kirstie Alley.

Jory Burton of DBL, Sunset, has the listing.

A Holmby Hills home owned for more than 25 years by the late studio executive-lawyer Gordon T. Stulberg, who green-lighted the George Lucas epic "Star Wars," and his landscape architect wife, Helen, has been sold for about its $2.8-million asking price.

Talent executive Leslie Siebert and her producer-personal manager husband, Steven, bought the six-bedroom, 5,700-square-foot house, built in 1940. The home also has a wood-paneled den, projection room, pool and gardens.

Leslie Siebert is a partner at the Gersh Agency and runs the firm's talent division. Among her clients are David Schwimmer, Tobey Maguire, Marsha Gay Harden, Megan Mullally and Jeffrey Tambor.

Steven Siebert owns Lighthouse Entertainment. His clients include David Arquette, Julia Stiles and Lukas Haas.

Gordon Stulberg, former head of 20th Century Fox and other studios, died in October at 76. His wife, whose landscaping firm is known as Affairs of the Garden, has moved to a 3,000-square-foot condo she bought in Beverly Hills.

Loren Judd of Westside Estate Agency represented the buyers.

Kay Pick of Coldwell Banker, Beverly Hills, had the listing.

Emmy-winning writer Sandy Frank, who has worked on "Late Night With David Letterman" as well as "In Living Color" and "Fresh Prince of Bel-Air," and his wife, Pam, are selling their home in Encino and moving to Calabasas.

Built in 1959, the Encino home, which has five bedrooms in 3,800 square feet, is listed at just under $1.2 million. The Spanish-style house is in the Royal Oaks area.

Rachelle Rosten and Beth Ann Green at Coldwell Banker, Beverly Hills East, have the listing.

Want to see previous columns on celebrity real estate transactions? Visit www.latimes.com/hotproperty for more Hot Properties.

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