Monday, May 6, 2013
Reese Witherspoon Buys House Next Door
LOCATION: Los Angeles, CA
SIZE: 3,053 square feet, 4 bedrooms, 4 bathrooms
YOUR MAMAS NOTES: As pearl clutchingly scandalicious as the tabloid storm over the recent arrests of otherwise wholesome Oscar winning actress Reese Witherspoon and her talent agent second hubby Jim Toth in Atlanta (GA) may be—he for driving drunk, she for cop sassing—it's their most recent, semi-secret real estate doings that really grab the attentions of real estate obsessed folk like Your Mama.
Some of the children may recall it wasn't too long ago that word made its way down the celebrity real estate gossip grapevine and into Your Mama's increasingly prodigious lap about how the Witherspoon-Toths were scouring the better zip codes of Los Angeles for a secluded new spread in the $15-20,000,000 range. Indeed, multiple sources snitched to Your Mama that, among other similarly sized and priced properties, the couple had a look see at but passed on NBC Broadcasting Chairman Ted Harbert's ex-wife Susan's secluded two-plus acre spread in Pacific Palisades that was then being quietly shown off market but is now listed on the open market with an $18.5 million asking price.
Despite an exhaustive search for a pricey new pad to house their growing family of five it seems Miz Witherspoon and Mister Toth may have decided to stay put in Miz Witherspoon's long-time residence in a discreet, gated enclave in L.A.'s tony Brentwood community where, Your Mama recently discovered, last December she/they surreptitiously shelled out exactly $3,000,000 for the house next door.
The first piece of Miz Witherspoon's three property puzzle was picked up way back in late 2003 when she was still married to actor Ryan Phillippe. She paid, according to property records, $4,725,000 for the corner property and its nearly 7,000 square foot mock-Med mini-mansion.
In July 2009, not too long after she and Mister Phillippe parted ways, Miz Witherspoon forked over $3.325 million for one of the two neighboring properties. She subsequently razed the 3,000 residence and re-landscaped the property to incorporate it into the existing backyard area.
A couple of quick and crude calculations on Your Mama's beloved bejeweled abacus shows that Miz Witherspoon has spent a total of $11,050,000 on her three parcel spread that combined encompass 1.32 acres.
Miz Witherspoon's newest acquisition had long been owned by handsome NCIS actor Mark Harmon's mother, the late fashion designer turned Maybelline model turned Tinseltown starlet turned painter mother Elyse Knox who was married to Heisman Trophy winning father Tom Harmon until his death in 1990.
Listing details from the time of the sale show the existing, perfectly ordinary single story ranch-style house was originally built in 1956, on a .66 acre lot and includes a total of three bedrooms and three bathrooms—plus an additional staff bedroom and bathroom—in 3,053 square feet. The grounds include a brick-paved motor court and attached two car garage, expansive brick terraces, a swimming pool and a separate stone and glass art studio/guest house. Your Mama has no idea what Miz Witherspoon and Mister Toth have planned for the property.
Avid celebrity real estate watchers know that Miz Witherspoon and by extension Mister Toth have been in mood to shake up her/their portfolio of high-priced properties over the last few years. In 2008 the Miz Witherspoon snatched up Libbey Ranch—a stunning historic ranch in Ojai, CA—from Million Dollar Decorator Kathryn Ireland for $5.8 million. She had the landscaping worked over by accomplished landscape designer Jay Griffith and the interiors all did up by lady-decorator Kristen Buckingham and in March 2011 she and Mister Toth were united in holy matrimony on the grounds in front of a slew of celeb guests. It wasn't long after the pristine property appeared on the cover and in the glossy pages of Elle Decor (Sept. 2012) that it popped up for sale with a $10 million price tag. She recently slashed the asking price by $2.75 million.
In August 2010—half a year before she married Mister Toth—she bought a secluded, equestrian friendly 2.53 acre spread in the prosperous and rustic Mandeville Canyon area of Los Angeles from idiosyncratic actor Steven Seagal for $6.9 million. She quickly leveled the property's various structures before she caught a classic case of The Celebrity Real Estate Fickle and flipped the property back on the market with an asking price of $7.995 million. The property was quietly sold it in November 2012 for $7.5 to seven-time Oscar nominated producer Kathleen Kennedy and five-time Oscar nominated producer Frank Marshall who, the children may recall, sold their previous home in L.A.—a gigantic Gwathmey Siegel & Associates-designed pile —early 2010 for just over $26 million to Tinseltown royals Tom Hanks and Rita Wilson.
Miz Witherspoon's property portfolio also includes a 6,462 square foot residence in the guard-gated Sugartree enclave in her native Nashville, TN that she scooped up in April 2005 for $760,000.
listing photo: Coldwell Banker Beverly Hills North