Peter Morton spends $13.5 million on a Trousdale Estates murder house

Listen kiddies, Yolanda has a wedding to attend this afternoon. So we don’t have time to sit on our big behind and dilly-dally with y’all like we normally do. Sorry! Just be grateful we are posting a story.

To be frank, Hard Rock Hotel/Cafe founder Peter Morton has himself a new house — a house located in the exclusive Trousdale Estates, arguably the most desirable neighborhood in Beverly Hills. Unfortunately, this $13.5 million deal was totally off-market. And that means, of course, we don’t have any good photos to share. But tax records tell us the house sits near the top of the 90210’s Carla Ridge and has 4 beds and 6 baths in 5,243-square-feet of living space. The classic mid-century modern pad (situated on .46-acres of land) was built in 1964 and was sold to Mr. Morton by Japanese film producer Fuminori Hayashida.

Mr. Morton

Despite the sublime location, this property has a sordid history — a history involving real bloodshed, in fact. Back in 2010, Mr. Hayashida’s 21-year-old son — Katsutoshi “Tony” Takazato — was brutally murdered in the front yard of this house by his ex-girlfriend’s new boyfriend. Apparently, the motive behind the grisly killing (Mr. Takazato was stabbed 58 times!) was revenge, and the case involved prostitution, pornography, physical abuse, and a bizarre love triangle. Yolanda won’t get into all those unsettling details — suffice to say that the murderer was convicted in 2012 and sentenced to life imprisonment.

The $13.5 million house, scene of a 2010 murder

Though Mr. Morton has long resided at his luxury estate in swanky Holmby Hills, in recent years he has become notorious in property gossip columns for buying and selling extravagant investment properties around LA. In 2012, he paid exactly $25 million for a Bel Air house that he would eventually knock down and flip as vacant land for $36 million. Also in 2012, he paid $9.8 million for a Trousdale house famously known as a former residence Elvis Presley. So the stories go, Mr. Morton planned to demolish the Elvis house, but a revolt by longtime fans forced him to change his mind. Instead, he opted to lucratively flip the property for $14.5 million to the Egyptian El Chiaty family. Today, the house remains standing.

However, Mr. Morton’s biggest deal to date (by far) is the sale of his longtime Malibu beach house, which was custom-built for him by starchitect Richard Meier. That property transferred for a mind-bending $110 million earlier this year (2018) to billionaires Michael & Iris Smith and currently ranks as the most expensive residential sale ever in California.

But we digress. We don’t know what Mr. Morton’s plans are for his new 90210 residence, but Yolanda would guess that he is either planning to demolish this ol’ gurl or will remodel her and attempt to flip the spread for big bucks. We shall see.

And that’s all she wrote, everyone. Oh, and if any of y’all would like to read more about the fascinating history of the Trousdale Estates neighborhood, Yolanda highly recommends you pick up a copy of author Steven Price’s book on the subject.

Listing agents: Scott & Catherine Ammann, Keller Williams Hollywood Hills
Peter Morton’s agents: Branden & Rayni Williams, Hilton & Hyland

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