YOU ARE HERE: LAT HomeCollections
(Page 2 of 2)

Hot Property

It's worth toasting -- a sold sign

May 25, 2008|Ann Brenoff | Times Staff Writer

When a quiet man with a 10-digit net worth speaks, I like to listen.

Norm Waitt Jr., co-founder of Gateway computers, is selling his Montecito mansion -- Belle Epoque -- in a sealed-bid auction.

The house, his ex-wife's pet project, had been listed for more than a year. He even dropped the price from $24.8 million to an eventual $19.7 million, based on his agent's advice that "below $20 million" would attract a buyer. It didn't.

"Selling it in an auction sounded interesting to me," Waitt said. "It's a different marketing approach." Sheldon Good & Co. is handling the sale, which, according to Senior Vice President David Latvaaho, will cast a wide net and likely attract foreign buyers as well as the usual suspects. Bids must be submitted by 3 p.m. on June 25, and Waitt can accept, reject or negotiate with any and all bidders.

Belle Epoque -- French for "beautiful era" -- is a French Country estate in a sea of Montecito Mediterraneans. It has 12,000 square feet overlooking the Pacific on almost 3 acres. There are five bedrooms, eight full and three half bathrooms, five fireplaces and reclaimed wide-plank oak floors. There are formal gardens, large lawns, a wildflower meadow, plus a pool and spa.

Waitt, divorced in 2006, says he is selling because it's more house than he needs. "I'm single," said the 54-year-old, "and this is more of a family house." Plus he already owns another house in Montecito.

Waitt left Gateway in 1991 and was an executive producer of the film "My Big Fat Greek Wedding" (2002).


Los Angeles Times Articles