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Hot Property

He speaks Malibu's language

October 16, 2005|Ruth Ryon | Times Staff Writer

When it comes to where he lives, Mel Gibson is passionate about Malibu. He just bought his third house there, this one a 7,000-square-foot Mediterranean on 155 feet of beachfront, for $24 million.

The director of the controversial blockbuster film "The Passion of the Christ" (2004) has closed escrow on a recently remodeled house, built in 1981. The home has six bedrooms, 10 bathrooms, a master bedroom suite with his-and-her sitting rooms, a gym, a library, an office, an elevator, a lagoon pool and a cabana. It also features a gourmet kitchen, a bar and a wine cellar.

Gibson, who has seven children with his wife, Robyn, still owns a four-bedroom, 2,300-square-foot midcentury house on 50 feet of sandy beach in Malibu. He bought that house in April 2000 for about $3.5 million. At the time, he also owned a Malibu home he had purchased several years earlier.

The 49-year-old actor, who was born in New York but raised in Australia, has owned grazing and farm land Down Under.

He won two Oscars: one for directing "Braveheart" (1995), the other for co-producing it with Alan Ladd Jr. and Bruce Davey. Gibson, whose subtitled "The Passion of the Christ" was in Aramaic, Latin and Hebrew, signed a deal with Disney in July to release his next film, "Apocalypto," which is in a Mayan dialect.

Kurt Rappaport of Westside Estate Agency, Beverly Hills, shared the $24.5-million listing with Tony and Alan Mark of Prudential Malibu Realty.

For new L.A. King, it's a move forward

Pavol Demitra, the new forward with the L.A. Kings hockey team, has become a first-time home buyer with his purchase of a newly built Manhattan Beach house for about $2.4 million.

Demitra, born in Dubnica, Slovakia, bought a two-story, Cape Cod-style home to share with his wife, Maja, and their two children. The house, with Brazilian cherrywood floors, has five bedrooms and four bathrooms in 3,900 square feet.

The free-agent forward was the top scorer for the St. Louis Blues in the 2003-04 season, with 22 goals and 58 points in 68 games. Demitra, 30, signed a three-year, $13.5-million contract with the Kings in August.

Mori Biener at South Bay Brokers Inc. represented Demitra; Helen Frederick, of the same office, had the listing.

A model home for agency founder

Paul Anka's former Beverly Hills-area home, which the singer-songwriter sold in September 2004 for about $5.9 million, has been sold again, this time for close to its $6.5-million asking price.

The seller is reported to be actor Burt Reynolds. The buyer is Heinz Holba, who in the mid-1980s founded L.A. Models, a large West Coast modeling agency. Holba's new 7,700-square-foot home has unobstructed city views, a media-screening room, a recording studio, five bedroom suites, a pool and a spa.

He listed his current residence, in the same gated community, at $4.5 million. The 5,200-square-foot house has a media room, a restaurant-grade kitchen, five bedrooms, 6 1/2 bathrooms, a lap pool and spa, an outdoor living room and extravagant lawns and plantings.

Tim Enright of the Enright Co. represented Holba in buying and has Holba's listing. Jade Mills and Barbara Tenenbaum of Coldwell Banker, Beverly Hills, had the listing on the Anka house.

As for Anka, he bought a home in Las Vegas a year ago last summer. He has written more than 900 songs, including "Put Your Head on My Shoulder."

Just reduced: Cash country estate

A longtime home of country music legends Johnny Cash and his wife, June Carter Cash, is listed at $2.5 million. The price for the rock, stone and wood contemporary on 4.6 acres in Tennessee was just reduced by $400,000.

"Such a deal," said Tommy Cash, Johnny's 65-year-old brother and the youngest of seven siblings.

He's trying to market the three-level, seven-bedroom home to Southern California fans of country music.

"A lot of people are moving back here from there," he said by phone from his offices at Crye-Leike Realtors in Hendersonville, Tenn. "Homes cost here about a third of what they cost in California."

The 13,880-square-foot house, which has two kitchens, is also in Hendersonville. "Precious antiques and massive chandeliers go with the sale," a flier says. The estate also has a pool and a tennis court.

Johnny Cash and his wife owned the home for about 35 years, until he died at 71 in 2003. His wife died four months before he did. She was 73.

He lived in Ventura County for a short while during the 1960s. After they married, the Cashes bought this property and a number of others, including a house in Jamaica.

The Hendersonville house, on Old Hickory Lake, was built in 1968, the year they were married. It is believed to be the last of their real estate holdings, his brother said.

Graceful exit from Hollywood Hills

Actress Debra Messing ("Will & Grace") and her husband, actor-screenwriter Dan Zelman, have already sold their Hollywood Hills home for $1.2 million. It was listed just last month at $1.3 million.

The buyer of the three-bedroom, 2,000-square-foot house is Stephen Wilson of Wilson Design Group, a graphics studio specializing in packaging and product design for the music industry.

Wilson spent three years as art director for the Disney Channel Magazine.

The Spanish-style Hollywood Hills home was built in 1926. The kitchen and master bathroom were recently renovated.

Barry Fields and Jeff Yarbrough of Sotheby's International Realty, Sunset Strip, represented the buyer, and Loren Judd of Westside Estate Agency, Beverly Hills, had the listing.

To see previous columns on celebrity transactions, go to

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