ABC Studios Chief Snaps Up a Fixer-Upper

By David, Mark | Variety, November 22, 2016 | Go to article overview

ABC Studios Chief Snaps Up a Fixer-Upper


David, Mark, Variety


A positively palatial if sadly down-on-its-heels mansion on a busy street in the historic Hancock Park area of Los Angeles, originally built in 1960, has been sold for $5.75 million. The new owner, according to property records: veteran entertainment industry executive Patrick Moran, president of ABC Studios.

The august neoclassical villa, inspired by the Pavillon de Musique de la comtesse du Barry at the Château de Louveciennes just outside of Paris, is set behind a stone balustrade on a nearly half-acre parcel that borders the Wilshire Country Club. The house was designed by acclaimed architect Wallace Nefffor Ralph J. Chandler, nephew of the late Los Angeles Times publisher Harry Chandler.

Unquestionably in need of a total restoration and update, the lavishly embellished mansion - which boasts nearly 8,200 square feet, with three principal bedrooms, two staffbedrooms, and six bathrooms - oozes with the grandeur of a bygone era. Original architectural details include herringbonepatterned hardwood floors, intricate moldings, hand-forged hardware, and gold-leafed accents. A double-height portico framed by four fluted Ionic columns leads to a knock-your-socksoffrotunda entry with fluted pilasters, hand-carved friezes, and a colossal crystal chandelier hanging from a domed ceiling that soars to about 30 feet.

Main-floor living and entertainment spaces include a reception salon as well as formal living and dining rooms, the latter lined with hand-painted chinoiserie-style wallpaper. Extensive service quarters provide a huge if wildly outdated kitchen with adjoining butler's pantry, along with a couple of staffbedrooms.

Accessible by elevator or a gracefully curved floating staircase, the second floor incorporates three ample bedroom suites with vintage bathrooms, along with a wood-paneled den/library with fireplace and decidedly contemporary-feeling floorto- ceiling bay window. A towering row of columns along the rear façade defines a marble-paved loggia that looks out over a flat backyard (much in need of sprucing up) with a circular fountain, formal gardens conceived by landscape architect Edward Huntsman-Trout, and a treeframed view over the golf course.

Moran, who has a penchant for buying and rehabbing luxury homes, owns a slightly smaller, if no less dignified, 1924 Tudor in Hancock Park that he picked up in January 2014 for $3.65 million. He had that property carefully and extensively overhauled, to great effect - it was featured in Architectural Digest. Last month, he put it up for sale at $7.85 million.

DP Rents Out Deluxe Spread in Beverly Hills

Celebrated cinematographer Janusz Kaminski, known for his frequent and successful collaborations with Steven Spielberg, has an exceptionally private compound in a particularly plummy pocket of Beverly Hills available as a super-luxe rental at $40,000 per month.

The Polish-born cinematographer - who has been nominated for six Oscars and has won two, for "Schindler's List" and "Saving Private Ryan" - purchased the 1.12-acre spread in 1996 for just over $2.1 million, shortly after he married his first wife, actress Holly Hunter.

Electronic security gates open to a long driveway that passes under a dense canopy of trees as it makes its way to the main residence of the multi-winged 1920s Spanish-style home, which has been made over in a contemporary manner. The nearly 5,000-square-foot house has four bedrooms and four bathrooms, plus a playroom/office with a separate entrance. A comfortably ample living room with high ceiling has a fireplace and steeltrimmed glass doors, and the skylit combination kitchen and family room opens to an outdoor living room with kiva-style corner fireplace that leads to a swimming pool and spa.

A detached one-bedroom and onebathroom guesthouse dates to the 1920s and offers self-contained seclusion, with living room and full kitchen. A third structure - a partially subterranean contemporary pavilion with a droughttolerant green roof, was built as an office/media lounge, with floor-to-ceiling bookshelves and a long wall of glass sliders. …

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