This summer, the Hearst estate, one of the most famous residential properties in Los Angeles, changed hands after a long spell on and off the open market. The Godfather House, as it is colloquially known, was initially listed by its most recent previous owner in the first quarter of the last decade, and ultimately picked up by investor Nicolas Berggruen, who paid $63.1 million for the 3.53-acre slice of Beverly Hills at auction back in September. Not bad; in 2016, the property had asked $195 million.
Four months later, Berggruen closed on a neighboring property that augments the accommodations at the address, and creates a bona-fide compound — or expands on the existing one. According to Dirt, the billionaire plunked down another $12.25 million to add a seven-bedroom, 6,365 sq. ft. guest house to the estate, and a goodly slice of prime land and additional privacy besides.
The 1954-built home features modern and Mediterranean design inspiration. Outside, it’s a midcentury suburban sprawler with a tile roof and a good amount of glass. The living style begins with a double-door entry and a foyer that hints at the grandiose, but the common area settles down into a simple statement on space and light, with mid-toned oak plank warming things up.
The lot, which abuts a hillside, represents a considerable amount of the property’s appeal to Berggruen. It adds nearly an acre to his Beverly Hills compound, with lawns and an outdoor poolside living area surrounded by a thick border of mature trees, hedges, and demarcation walls.
Berggruen is the founder the Berggruen Institute, a non-partisan think tank focused on various political and social issues. His net worth is around $1.6 billion.