Towards the far western end of Malibu lies Broad Beach, the ironically-named strip of sand known both for its palatial homes and for its unfortunate vanishing act. Yes, though all of Malibu’s once endlessly sandy beaches are slowly being gobbled back up by the voracious ocean, the B.B. erosion problem in particular has become quite dire. This ol’ beach ain’t just not broad — she is now virtually non-existent.
To counter (or cock-block?) Mother Nature, the several dozen rich folks who own along the beach have put together a plan to tax themselves and truck in sand from another (sandier?) location and toss it down in front of their homes. But even the most optimistic among them admit this is but a short temporary fix — the effort will cost $55 to $60 million and will last, at most, 10 years.
Y’all might think this grim situation would discourage people from droppin’ dough on this beach. But nope! Prices here are higher than ever. From a quick search, it appears to Yolanda that at least 7 or 8 houses along Broad Beach Road have sold in the past two years, and the cheapest went for about $6 million.
Hey, you only live once. So what if your house is gone in 20 years? Chances are that most of us old fogies will have departed this world before then.
Anyway, today’s Broad Beach house first came to market a full year ago and asked $10 million. After several price chops, the wee shack sold earlier this month for $7,775,000 to a blind trust front for entrepreneur/producer team owner Oren Koules.
Our Mr. Koules was born and raised in La Grange Park, Illinois. After a successful stint as a day trader in Chicago, the former amateur hockey star came to Los Angeles in the 1990s to make movies. Though he had some success in the early LA years with films like Mrs. Winterbourne, Set It Off, and John Q, it was not until 2003 when he really hit the big bucks. That year, the original Saw movie debuted — and the film was shot in 18 days at a cost of $1.2 million and grossed over $100 million at the box office. Since then, the franchise has grossed approximately $1 billion and has catapulted Mr. Koules and his Evolution Entertainment to become household names in the industry.
Naturally, Saw has also made Mr. Koules an exceptionally rich man.
Now in his late 50s, Mr. Koules is married to his second wife, nightlife entrepreneur Shereen Arazm. The couple have two young daughters and Mr. Koules also has an adult son from his first marriage.
The long and narrow .3-acre lot contains a two-car garage and driveway parking space for an additional three vehicles. A wooden door leads from the driveway down brick steps past the wee grassy courtyard. The 1976 Post and Beam has honey-hued hardwood floors and a “chef’s kitchen” with a soaring ceiling and some lovely skylights.
Also on the main level is a living room w/ fireplace, a formal dining space, and a sitting area off the kitchen. Oh my, those retro chocolate brown chairs are giving your gurl the hot flashes! We would just love them in our own home.
The 4,282-square-foot house has four bedrooms and four baths, including a master suite with a slim balcony and ocean views. Nice! That entirely mirrored bathroom scares the crap outta Yolanda, though. Even the vainest Kardashian does not need to see her naked body reflected on every single wall. (It also looks as though that bathroom has not been updated since the 70s).
The brick back porch has various seating options and a meandering pathway leads past a whimsical picket fence and down to the sandbags at the sea. Those sandbags are temporary measures, of course. As we say, this house could very well be underwater in 20 years. But dammit, Mr. Koules has (apparently) resolved to enjoy himself in the moment. Nothin’ wrong with that. Good on you, sir.
A scan through property records reveals that our Mr. Koules is clearly a guy who enjoys testing out different neighborhoods in LA — he has owned homes all over the place: Beverly Hills, the Hollywood Hills, Hancock Park, and even up in Ventura County.
In late 2005, Mr. Koules paid Friends actor Matthew Perry $6,100,000 for a mansion in the Uber-pricey Trousdale Estates section of the 90210. Located on a quiet cul-de-sac near in the uppermost reaches of the neighborhood, the glass-and-steel pad is currently painted black and has a decidedly industrial vibe goin’. The 7,000-square-foot structure also appears to be a rare two-story Trousdale house — an area where most properties are low-slung mid-century moderns.
In 2009, at the height of the economic recession, Mr. Koules sold the house for $8,250,000 to a man named Jacques Essebag, better known as Europe-based TV and radio show host Arthur. Just a year or so later, Mr. Essebag flipped the property for more than $10 million to its current owner: Fuze beverage mogul Lance Collins.
Also in 2009, Mr. Koules paid $2,500,000 for a more modest “villa” up on world-famous Mulholland Drive in the Hollywood Hills. He sold the property after only about 2.5 years of ownership for $2,550,000. (It has since changed hands again).
The Koules family also owned a beach retreat up in Ventura that they bought for about $1.7 million in 2011 and sold just this past April (2018) for $4,100,000 to a non-celeb couple.
In August 2010, Mr. Koules paid $4,200,000 for what (in Yolanda’s opinion) is the best property he has ever owned: a grand old Italian Renaissance villa in the proverbial heart of Hancock Park.
During their ownership, the Koules couple remodeled the place in a smartly chic manner. And they made a damn killing on the mansion: after just five years of ownership, they sold the place in a top-secret off-market deal for $11,850,000 — nearly triple what they originally paid.
And the buyers? Sharon & Ozzy Osbourne, naturally. For lots more photos of the Koules-cum-Osbourne mansion (which Yolanda absolutely loves, incidentally), visit our 2016 post.
Mr. Koules’s current residence is also in Hancock Park, so he must have taken a shine to the neighborhood. Although not nearly as grand as the H.P. mansion he sold to the Osbourne, this Robert Farquhar-designed compound is still quite large: nearly 6,300-square-feet of living space spread across a main house, a pool house, and a two-story guest house.