Posts Tagged ‘celebrity homes’
A Favorite Home to Pass By on A Private Los Angeles Tour
The front lawn of 10000 Sunset Boulevard in the Holmby Hills neighborhood of Los Angeles seems always to be quite busy. People, children and pets are all engaged in life activities in a perpetual tableau. These are all sculpted works on display in front of this Wallace Neff designed home that has been occupied at one time or another by Vincent Minelli and Judy Garland, Howard Hughes and Jennifer Jones. The driveway was used in a scene in the classic film Sunset Boulevard. The work featured in this top photo is by J. Seward Johnson, Jr., scion of the bandaid empire and titled “A Little to the Right.” Below is the playful work of Mexican artist Victor Salmones, “Curiosity.” This is just one home we can visit during our Los Angeles custom tour that features significant art on display. Sometimes we can only see the art and not much of the home behind and the “life” of the house stand in suspended animation in a silent welcome to passersby and visitors.
A Cemetery Worth Visiting on a Halloween Private Tour
Talk about Halloween decorations, some of the very best in the world must be the ones we show our Los Angeles private tour guests as we drive through some of the fanciest neighborhoods in and around Hollywood and Beverly Hills. Some of these homes go all out for a real “spooky” experience. A good example is this cemetery that we discovered as we were pointing out some of the beautiful celebrity homes we like to visit with our custom tour groups. We didn’t count or photograph all the grave markers but there were many more than what you can see in this picture. Some Hollywood special effects after dark, maybe a loudspeaker playing the Mephisto Waltz or Night on Bald Mountain, and this could be the best of the best for Halloween house hunting. Our After Dark tours generally focus on neon and nightlife in Los Angeles, sometimes the Griffith Observatory to observe the stars above Hollywood but at this time of year, Halloween, we look for the wonderful yard displays designed to be seen when the sun goes down.
Bel-Air Is a Gold Mine of Celebrity Homes for Our Private Tour Guests to See
Right across from one entrance to UCLA (University of California Los Angeles) is one of the extravagant entrances to the exclusive neighborhood of Bel-Air. We think of it as the Beverly Hills of Los Angeles but without the luxury shopping. Sightseeing here is really about celebrity homes that line the verdant canopied streets winding up into and around the hills. In many ways it is a highlight of our Los Angeles private tour when our guests really want to know where their favorite stars lived…or live today. When we head through this gate our guides can begin dropping familiar names from all periods of Hollywood history from the Silent Era to present day. Just to give you an idea along just this one road: Joe E. Brown, Howard Hawks, Talia Shire, Lauren Bacall, Peter Ustinov, Terry Semel, William Friedkin, set location for 9-5 (Jane Fonda, Lily Tomlin, Dolly Parton) and Hart to Hart (Robert Wagner, Stephanie Powers), Sonja Henie, Sherry Lansing, Joseph Pasternak, Edgar Rice Burroughs, Brian Wilson, Janet Gaynor, Howard Hughes, Grace Kelly, Elvis Presley, Majel Barrett/Gene Roddenberry, Cary Grant, Ray Milland, Basil Rathbone, Carol Bayer Sager, James Burrows, Richard Gere, Red Skelton, Jerry Herman, David Wolper, Jim Backus, Alfred Hitchcock, John Barrymore, George Sanders, Peggy Lee, Mick Fleetwood, Rita Hayworth, John Forsythe, Dennis Franz, Robert Loggia, Dennis Wilson. There are many more streets in Bel-Air, too, and lots more names to drop as we slowly cruise through the area. And do not forget there are Holmby Hills and Beverly Hills to explore, too.
Our Private Tour Through Bel Air Pays Respects to Nancy Reagan
Memorial wreaths, flowers and mementos on the Hollywood Walk of Fame are regular sad sights on a private Los Angeles tour with us. We make it a point to locate those stars who have recently passed away and show our guests the regard that the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce, residents and visitors have for the entertainment figures honored with stars on the famous sidewalk. We were a little surprised and pleased to see flowers appearing as we passed by the estate of Ronald and Nancy Reagan in Bel Air soon after Nancy’s passing was announced. In this verdant neighborhood of Los Angeles (despite the drought) the small floral arrangements appearing around the perimeter were eyecatching and pleasing. We had been fortunate over the years to see Mrs. Reagan from time to time when we stopped for lunch at the Polo Lounge at the Beverly Hills Hotel. She never lost her “Hollywood” dazzle and attracted our gaze from the moment we saw her in the busy restaurant. We will certainly visit her (and Ronald Reagan) where they are buried at the Reagan Library in Simi Valley. Many of our luxury tour guests request that we make the drive up from Los Angeles to see what we think must be the best of the presidential libraries. The facility is a must see for our guests interested in California presidents and American history.
Our Private Tour Guests Get to Know Bel Air
This six square mile neighborhood of Los Angeles between Hollywood and the beach – one of the least densely populated areas of the city – is essentially a residential area with winding forested streets along large well-landscaped properties adjacent to UCLA. When we are pointing out homes of past and present celebrities we find ourselves quite busy around here. We also love to take our guests up to the Hotel Bel Air, secluded and quiet, a perfect getaway for movie stars and statesmen wanting to be away from the busy hubbub of Beverly Hills and other parts of Los Angeles. It is a nice place for a secret rendezvous or simply a meal at Wolfgang Puck at Hotel Bel-Air. Our private Los Angeles tour often begins at this hideaway in the hills when our guests are also guests of the hotel. From notables like President and Nancy Reagan to more obscure heroes of moviedom like Irving Brecher we point out lots of homes, some even recognizable from their use in movies and television. Two large gates lead into the neighborhood from Sunset Boulevard and we make use of a couple of less obvious ingress and egress roads depending on what we are showing our guests. What we are not certain of, however, is whether there is or is not a hyphen in the name Bel Air.
Our Guests Say a Private L.A. Tour is Better than a Map
We feel these maps which are available all around Hollywood are wonderful souvenirs of a visit to Los Angeles. They are even better if you spend a couple of hours with us taking you to see the best of the homes all around Hollywood, Beverly Hills and Bel Air. We know which homes are most visible. We can also customize the route to include the homes of your favorite celebrities. The information we have is always current, too, which you cannot say for the maps. Our private Los Angeles tour means you can tell us which homes you wish to see and we can take you there. Besides celebrity homes there are the clubs, bars and restaurants patronized by the stars (thanks Celebrity HotSpots) that our guests always enjoy seeing and visiting. Final resting places? Yes, we know where the graves and crypts are located for our dearly departed movie stars and recording artists. If our guests have trouble deciding which map or guidebook to purchase we can help there, too. Plus, the map only has an address for each celebrity. We have history, stories and gossip plus we do all the driving (do not forget we provide snacks, drinks and photography).
Our Private Tour by Helicopter Gets Great Shots of Mansions
“Who lives there?” is an oft repeated question as we fly over some of the fanciest neighborhoods of Los Angeles (Hollywood, Beverly Hills, Bel Air, Brentwood, Palisades, Malibu) in our luxury helicopter. More often than not we have an answer. We make these flights regularly and study and read real estate news and share information at our office. We know. What is fun is how many times our guests will write us with an aerial photo from their custom tour attached to an email asking the same question. We get it. We take a lot of photographs on a one-hour trip around Los Angeles and we understand that our private Los Angeles tour guests will not remember all the homes we point out to them. Their tour album photos are identified by number and not named as we provide them to our guests almost immediately after their tour. We welcome their inquiries, though, and get back to them quickly with the identity of the residents of the home. We also generally drive back to these neighborhoods after the flight to see the entrance to the property (yes, often just a gated driveway). Still, our guests are thrilled and they have wonderful memories of their sightseeing tour of Los Angeles and its celebrity neighborhoods.
No FOR SALE Sign at the Playboy Mansion for our Private Tour to See
One of the most popular destinations on every private Los Angeles tour that we do is the notorious Playboy Mansion where Hugh Hefner reigns. Since 1971 he has been the owner and principal occupant of this magnificent Holmby Hills estate which Playboy purchased then for $1.1M. That’s quite a Return on Investment with the current sale price set at $200M. As the CNN video outlines you get an awful lot for your money:
- more than 5 acres of prime residential real estate bordered by the famed Los Angeles Country Club;
- 20,000+ square feet (29 rooms) in a fabulous Arthur Kelly-designed Gothic-Tudor home built in 1927;
- the pool with the famed grotto;
- an aviary and zoo;
- wine cellar;
- screening room;
- basement gym;
- basketball and tennis court; and, of course,
- fabulous neighbors (which we will identify on your luxury tour).
Oh, by the way, Hugh gets to live in the house as long as he wants. That’s part of the sale contract. If you wish to make an offer on the home we have the number to call. Or, just contact us to take a close look at Hef’s neighborhood.
Our Private Tour is a Modern Family Home Tour
When our private Los Angeles tour family that day settled into our luxury SUV and we inquired about any particular things about our city interested them they answered quickly, “We love Modern Family.” As it turns out we know where all the Hollywood area locations are that fans of the show know so well. Along with the usual sights and destinations of Hollywood and Beverly Hills we made sure to get to a number of these easily recognized production locations. Above, the Dunphy house. Along the way we made quick stops at Cam & Mitchell‘s house and the Pritchett house. Our guides take great pride in following new television shows and movie productions to learn the homes and important locations. We share the information at our regular staff meetings so that we can instantly respond to any request by our guests. Sometimes our guests arrive with a particular star in mind which allows us to create a very special custom tour for them. Who is your favorite star? What is your favorite television series?
Our Private Tour Guests Visit Notorious Landmarks
While spring remains in the air we revel in thoughts of rebirth and renewal. Despite the drought Los Angeles is verdant and full of sweet pollen and bumble bees. Yet, despite the fine weather and sunny days many of our guests are fascinated by death. Not just the timely passing of older stars and performing artists but the tabloid covered sensational deaths. Since our tour of Los Angeles is always private and custom that means we will be stopping at the Viper Room (above) on Sunset Boulevard to talk about the drugged ending of River Phoenix at the famous West Hollywood nightclub owned at the time by Johnny Depp. That was 22 years ago when River was only 23 years old. More recent was the widely covered untimely death of Michael Jackson in a Holmby Hills mansion that he was renting during his preparation for his THIS IS IT comeback concert series in London. From the Hollywood Sign itself to some now seedy apartments around Hollywood we can bring our guests to numerous destinations associated with murder and mayhem, accidents and unexplained passings of the rich and the famous….our Dark Side custom Los Angeles tour.