Amazon founder and CEO Jeff Bezos has smashed the Los Angeles real estate record by paying US$165 million for Warner Estate, the property owned by business magnate David Geffen.
Earlier this year Jeff Bezos, also founder and CEO of Blue Origin, bought three New York apartments at 212 Fifth Avenue in a deal valued at around US$80 million. If turned into a home, the three units would total over 17,000 square feet.
“I would say it’s one of the most beautiful properties in the world, let alone Los Angeles,” said local real estate agent Kurt Rappaport.
Warner Estate took a decade to build. It is set over nine acres in Beverly Hills and was designed in the 1930s for Jack Warner, the late former president of Warner Bros. The property had expansive terraces, sprawling gardens, several guest houses, a tennis court and its own nine-hole golf course.
Geffen bought the Warner Estate for US47.5 million in 1990, reportedly in cash, after the sale of his record label, MCA.
“No studio czar’s residence, before or since, has ever surpassed in size, grandeur, or sheer glamour the Jack Warner Estate on Angelo Drive in Benedict Canyon,” wrote veteran Los Angeles real estate agent Jeff Hyland in his book, The Legendary Estates of Beverly Hills.
No real estate agents were involved in the transaction, according to a person familiar with the deal, reported the Wall Street Journal.
Jeff Bezos’ purchase figure surpasses the previous residential record for Los Angeles which was set late last year when co-chairman of News Corp and executive chairman and CEO of the Fox Corporation, Lachlan Murdoch, paid roughly US$150 million for Chartwell. That was a Bel-Air estate used as the Clampett residence in the television show The Beverly Hillbillies.
Bezos Expeditions, an umbrella company that includes Jeff Bezos’ purchase of the Washington Post and his charitable foundation, also paid US$90 million for a plot of undeveloped Los Angeles land. The land belonged to the estate of Paul Allen, the Microsoft co-founder, who died in 2018.
The US$165 million purchase of Warner Estate is an eighth of a percent of Jeff Bezos’ US$131.9 billion net worth, The Verge reported.