Last week, after years of speculation, the Wall Street Journal finally pulled the curtain back on the identity of the mysterious buyer who paid nearly $100.5 million (in cash) for the most expensive residence ever sold in New York City. Turns out it was Texas-based tech billionaire Michael Dell and his wife Susan.
Although the sale did not close until late 2014 — when the One57 penthouse in question was completed — it was originally announced and agreed to way back in 2012. Since then, the owner’s name had been a closely guarded secret. At one point Yolanda even wondered if it might be Russian billionaire Yuri Milner.
Curiously, on that very 2017 story about Mr. Milner, we received an anonymous reader comment insisting that the One57 buyer was indeed Michael Dell. This was months before the WSJ story, and we have no idea who this reader was or where they got their information, but obviously they were not incorrect. Unfortunately, Yolanda was unable to confirm that intel on our own.
Anyway, we digress. The Dell family is based in Austin, Texas — where they reside in an ultra-contemporary Gwathmey Siegel-designed mountaintop extravaganza — and they also have homes in NYC and Hawaii. They do not yet own any residential real estate in LA, at least as far as we can tell.
However, the Dells have four adult children (they range in age from 20 to 26) and we do know that at least two of them mainly reside here in the City of Angels. Their son Zach attends school at USC and their daughter Alexa bunks up in the 90210.
So we thought it might be fun to examine the Dell kids’ West Coast living circumstances. We don’t care much about the USC dorms (Yolanda herself lived there about a million years ago and they are still mostly nasty) but Miss Alexa Dell has much nicer digs up in the hills. Let’s discuss.
First, a little background. Alexa Dell is 24 years old and is the second-eldest of Michael & Susan Dell’s four children. As an heiress to a $23.5 billion fortune, she can afford anything she pleases. And what she pleases, according to the Instagram contraption (where she has over 37,000 followers) is a frighteningly enormous array of designer labels. Yolanda could not finish looking through all 600+ of her photos, but we counted dozens of Chanel, Givenchy, Bottega Veneta, and Hermès products adorning Miss Dell’s svelte frame.
Miss Dell has lived in LA for some time and was previously in a longterm relationship with Tinder co-founder Sean Rad. After that breakup, she hooked up with a 40-year-old dude named Harrison Refoua and they became engaged last year at the Four Seasons in Kona, Hawaii, which her daddy owns (duh).
We’re not really sure, but Yolanda would guess that Miss Dell’s gigantic engagement ring required a forklift to hoist it up to finger level. Seriously, that thing is big enough to affect the Earth’s gravitational pull. Good ol’ Miss Dell made sure to Instagram and Snapchat the $3 million sparkler with the caption “He did good” (oh, brother!).
Yolanda was overjoyed the other day when we realized that we share a mutual friend with Miss Dell. Let’s call him Tolled U. So. Obviously we called up Mr. So to get the scoop on Miss Dell’s current living circumstances. The chatty and catty Mr. So gladly whispered that only about two weeks ago (in February 2018), Miss Dell moved into her “LA starter house”, a leased residence in the mountains high above Beverly Hills proper, in a Los Angeles neighborhood known as Beverly Hills Post Office.
The contemporary house has views overlooking Benedict Canyon and down to Century City. And maybe even the ocean, on a clear day. Miss Dell has some famous neighbors — Family Guy creator Seth Macfarlane lives directly across the street, and WME co-CEO Patrick Whitesell is within batting range. According to records, Miss Dell is paying $23,500 per month for the privilege of occupying the premises.
Our friend Tolled U. So told Yolanda that Miss Dell “just couldn’t resist that view” and also incongruously added that “she has [the name of a prominent Beverly Hills plastic surgeon] on speed dial.” According to him, Miss Dell has already placed one 911 call from her new leased residence for “an emergency lip plumping”. Somehow we kinda doubt that (but who knows) and we have no idea how Mr. So knows who is on Miss Dell’s speed dial, but we didn’t dare ask questions.
Originally built in 1961, Miss Dell’s leased B.H.P.O. abode was substantially renovated by its current owner, a former MTV executive named Andrew Schuon. It appears Mr. Schuon picked up the property in 2009 for just over $1 milliion.
The 5,300-square-foot sprawler sits on a sloped .48-acre corner lot. A concrete, essentially windowless front facade gives the place a rather forbidding presence. There’s a three-car garage, a gated front entryway, and terrazzo floors in the open-plan living area. The listing highlights the “42 Fleetwood doors and windows”
The kitchen is essentially carved from a giant hunk of marble and seamlessly flows to the formal dining room and family room. Elsewhere there’s a library with a wet bar, because who doesn’t like a little nip of cognac with their Catcher In The Rye?
The master bedroom appears to have more of that terrazzo flooring, and the master bath is slathered in marble. A roomy close A rather smallish glass gym has blonde hardwood floors and thrilling views. The dual closets aren’t quite as big as we expected for a lady like Miss Dell, but at least one has a large center island, so there’s that.
The puffy-lipped heiress will no doubt appreciate the infinity pool that accentuates the home’s jetliner views and a patch of lawn plenty big enough for a dog run. According to the listing, the property is also a “true smart house” with full audio, video, and lighting, plus a HEPA/UV climate control.
Naturally, the residence is surrounded by a bevy of security cameras and Miss Dell is constantly shadowed by her father’s Presidential-level security detail. Do not even think about showing up unannounced at her 90210 house, looking to borrow one of her Balmain gowns for the latest charity gala. Y’all will find yourselves in deep, deep shit.
Our chatty friend Tolled U. So couldn’t help but extol Miss Dell’s work ethic. Apparently she has been “studying hard and taking notes” on LA’s luxury neighborhoods in preparation for the purchase of her very first home. Mr. So expects her to be ready to make a residential big splash “within the next year or so”. And she’s no dummy, according to him. “Alexa wants the perfect contemporary house. Trousdale, the Birds, Bel Air, she’ll look everywhere. And if she has to measure the closet space herself or test the selfie lighting, she’ll do it. Whatever it takes.”
Realtors, gird your loins.
Listing agent: Juliette Hohnen, Douglas Elliman