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A version of this story first appeared in the Aug. 8 issue of The Hollywood Reporter magazine.
The Aaron Spelling estate is for sale, but who’s buying? Petra Stunt, 25, daughter of Formula One billionaire Bernie Ecclestone, has pocket listed the 56,500-square-foot Holmby Hills mansion built in 1991 by the late TV producer and his wife, Candy Spelling, for $150 million. That’s the same price Candy Spelling asked for the estate in March 2009 when she put it on the market, though Stunt scored a relative bargain by paying $85 million in cash in July 2011.
Now, after a remodel by design expert Gavin Brodin, Stunt reportedly is headed back to London with her husband James and daughter Lavinia (her rep declined to comment), leaving one of L.A.’s biggest trophy properties empty. But it might not stay that way for long. “We’ve got a much broader buyer pool for this kind of sale than we ever have had before,” says The Agency co-founder and owner Billy Rose, who specializes in luxury homes.
Interest from international buyers could push the price over the record $102 million paid in March for L.A.’s Fleur de Lys estate. Notes Aaron Kirman of Beverly Hills real estate firm John Aaroe Group: “The wealth coming out of China and the Far East is immense. And L.A. is still a bargain compared to most cities.”
A source said that Stunt’s decision to sell came after she and her family decided not to come back to Los Angeles. “Buying a house in L.A. was an impulsive move,” the source added.
Meanwhile, Kurt Rappaport, co-founder of Westside Estate Agency, said it won’t be a rash decision for whoever writes a likely record-setting check for the property. “It is, in many ways, like running a hotel,” Rappaport explained. “It’s a large home, and it requires a tremendous amount of staff and caretakers and security. Even if you have the money, you have to want that. There are people on standby who do want that, but this is not your run-of-the-mill, everyday house.”
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