It seems to ol’ Yolanda that famously brash and spectacularly successful Hollywood mega-mogul Ari Emanuel is feeling a bit flush with cash these days.
First there was the $2.4 billion that WME coughed up to acquire New York City-based IMG a couple years ago. Then he thanked about 20 of his former assistants by presenting each of them with a Cartier watch. Then there’s the billion bucks (or so) he’s (allegedly) going to make whenever Uber goes public. Then there was the acquisition of the Miss Universe pageant back in September 2015.
Now it seems that Ari’s $10 million Brentwood Park mansion is just not grand enough for him these days. To that end, Yolanda has heard from a little birdie that ol’ Ari quietly paid a whopping $16,550,000 for an uber-contemporary estate located near the mouth of Brentwood’s Mandeville Canyon.
For those who don’t know, Mandeville Canyon and the sleepy surrounding areas have long been packed with high-profile residents. Some of Ari’s closest famous new neighbors include Ryan Murphy, Oscar-winning cinematographer Richard Edlund and his Russian heiress wife, and Goop gal Gwyneth Paltrow.
Inspired by the work of the incomparable architect Ricardo Legorreta, the extremely modern-minded casa was built by the adept LA-based Marc Whipple Architects and is completely invisible from the road courtesy of a thick row of willow trees and ornate double gates. Things are kept simple and pastoral in the gigantic courtyard, with a couple shady oaks and some tall grasses for landscaping and gravel covering the generous motorcourt.
If this house looks oddly familiar to some of you real estate-obsessed chaps, it could be because way back in 2010 it was leased for a moment by comedienne Chelsea Handler before she bought her current digs in Bel Air. Your Mama at Variety reported at the time that she shelled out around $35k per month for the privilege of enjoying the premises. After Handler vacated the estate, the property was sold in 2011 and the new owners (more on them later) gave the place a cosmetic overhaul to make it look cleaner, more glassy, and way more modern.
The huge oval-shaped pool is really the centerpiece of the property and gracefully connects with the interior living room via folding doors and disappearing walls of glass. Outside, there’s several lounging areas, a covered outdoor dining set, and what appears to be an outdoor built-in wet bar.
There’s a pretty fabulous fireplace in the living room, completely framed by walls of glass, that overlooks the entirety of the backyard.
The living room connects seamlessly to an open-concept modern kitchen and two adjacent dining areas.
Somewhere there’s a media room/lounge with red velvet sofas and white oak flooring. The room looks absolutely puny by today’s mega-mansion theater standards, but we love the coziness and simplicity.
Lots of lustrous modern art set off the white walls with their well-placed pops of color.
In addition to the writing desk, the master suite’s got a lounging area and a wall-mounted TV overlooking yet another fireplace. Then there’s a massive walk-in closet which assuredly has enough room to accommodate even Mr. Emanuel’s extensive collection of designer suits.
The master bath is super cool with more luscious white oak floors, a step-down two-person shower, separate soaking tub, a wall made of what looks like dark burled-walnut with an attached sink and mirror, and one of those new-fangled and hideously expensive toilets that probably flushes all by itself.
Back outside, there’s a big grassy area for playing or for placing the yoga mats. In one corner of the yard there’s also a raised wooden patio with dual lounge chairs and a trickling fountain.
Over in another corner, almost hidden from view from the main house by trees and tall grasses, there’s a picture-perfect guest house/modern man-cave with double-height ceilings, a kitchenette and dining area, sitting room, built-in bookcases stocked with real (?!) books, yet another fireplace, and a loft-style bedroom.
Yolanda can just imagine curling up in this bed with a good book on a misty LA day. Heaven! (Though we imagine Ari will use this place more as a place to meet with clients and agents about confidential matters and work stuff like that.)
Downstairs, there’s also glassy bathroom shielded from the outside by a thick bamboo grove.
Listing information also indicates there are stalls and grooming areas for two horses on the property.
Back to the origin of the property – as chronicled by Your Mama, the house was built back in 1998 for big-time commercial director David Cornell and his artist wife Mary Ellen Argentieri. After Ms. Handler’s aforementioned tenancy ended, the house was put up for sale and eventually was acquired in April 2011 for the bargain-basement price of $7,550,000 by “Ormond Holdings LLC”, a front for British screenwriter Peter Griffiths and his British wife Elizabeth Farwell. The couple immediately gave the adobe-style house the streamlined makeover shown here and put it up for sale in April 2015 for $22.5 million. Even though the $16,550,000 sale price is much lower than they originally wanted, Yolanda would bet the couple still walked away with millions even after the no-doubt hefty renovation costs and fat real estate fees are taken into consideration.
As it turns out, this is not the first time Mr. Griffiths and Ms. Farwell have flipped a house in Mandeville Canyon for a huge profit.
Back in 2002, the couple acquired an 11,000-square foot mansion on 2 acres much further up in Mandeville Canyon. The exact purchase price seems to have become lost with time, but tax records indicate they paid somewhere around $6 million. They quickly renovated the substantial property and installed a subterranean guesthouse beneath the rear lawn. Yes, you read that right. There’s a guest house (bomb shelter?) under the lawn.
Anyway, all their hard work paid off because the house sold in 2007 for a breathtaking $25,325,000. At the time, it was the most ever paid for a house in Brentwood and held that record for another four years. In case y’all are curious, the buyer was Matt Wollman, the low-profile founder of Interactive Health, a very large manufacturer of massage chairs and other related equipment.
In 2010, Matt Wollman’s daughter Amy was married in the backyard of her family’s spectacular estate. But now we really digress…
Back to Mister Emanuel. Property records show he and his longtime wife, Sara Addington, continue to own the same swanky Brentwood Park residence (above) they picked up in 2005 for $9,850,000 from serial house flippers Stuart & Stephanie Liner. Property records also show that traditional-style house has 6,859 square feet of living space with 6 bedrooms and 6 bathrooms, in addition to a separate two-story guesthouse and numerous recreational amenities like a built-in trampoline, full-size basketball court, and a de rigeur swimming pool and spa. Despite being nearly twice as pricey, the couple’s new crib has 8,000 square feet but only 4 bedrooms and 5.5 baths (and no basketball court or trampoline).