Real Estate Newsletter: Wild Plan to Save LA’s Largest Mansion

Welcome back to the real estate newsletter and a happy new year! I’m honored to jump into your inbox every Saturday and I look forward to continuing my weekly appearances in 2022.

As the real estate market generally slows to a lull around the holidays, two extremely ambitious, highly controversial developers kept the news cycle going.

The first was Nile Niami, the beanie and sunglasses wearer developer who built the largest modern house in the United States called “The One.” He’s worked on the 105,000-square-foot mega-mansion for the past decade, but he’s about to lose it to a foreclosure sale after running $ 180 million in debt on the property.

He called the Times from a moped spinning through a jungle in Thailand and outlined his latest plan to keep the extravagant house in his own hands – and it involves cryptocurrency and a desperate plea to Elon Musk (or any other billionaire ).

The second was Mohamed Hadid, the reality TV star, who tried to cram a 30,000-square-foot mansion into 1.22 acres in Bel-Air. The neighbors didn’t have it, and a Los Angeles court ordered the mansion to be demolished. This infamous home auctioned off for $ 5 million and the demolition is about to begin for the stain that Bel-Air residents do not affectionately refer to as “the Starship Enterprise.”

Over in the small town of Bradbury, In-N-Out’s owner and heiress Lynsi Snyder sold her 19,000-square-foot mansion for $ 16.25 million. The palatial property was bought with burger money from a former Dodgers star and includes a two-hole golf course with a sand trap.

Downtown LA’s Arts District got good news when Spotify unveiled Pod City: a campus with 18 podcast studios, a theater, an indoor stage, and places for musicians to tinker with vintage instruments. The hub will allow the streaming service to attract new talent and produce more original shows.

We also have a new edition of Gimme Shelter, Liam Dillon and Manuela Tobías’ outstanding podcast on the housing crisis. This week they spoke to a first-time millennial buyer about how to buy a home.

While you catch up on the latest, visit and like our Facebook pagewhere you can find property stories and updates all week.

One final plan to save “The One”

A look at a 4,000 square meter bedroom with private pool in the mega villa “The One” in Bel-Air.

(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)

Nile Niami needs someone to take him into the stratosphere.

This is the developer’s latest plea in a video released on Monday Night while trying to stop the looming auction of “The One,” the 105,000 square foot mega-villa he created over the past decade.

On December 16, Niami’s development company Crestlloyd filed an agreement in the US bankruptcy court to auction the extravagant property to the highest bidder to multiple lenders over the years. The auction would run from February 7th to February 10th.

It is the latest chapter in an increasingly dramatic feud for the largest modern home in the United States that Niami is making wild plans to prevent its lenders from selling the home to offset their losses.

Hadid’s doomed mega-mansion goes up for auction

An unfinished mansion stands on a slope.

The unfinished mansion at Strada Vecchia Road 901 in Bel-Air will be shown in May 2017.

(Genaro Molina / Los Angeles Times)

After half a decade of criminal charges and legal battles, developer Mohamed Hadid’s half-finished mega-villa was auctioned for $ 5 million. Next, it will be destroyed.

Hadid, a reality TV regular and father of models Bella and Gigi, bought the property in 2011 and quickly set out to cram a 30,000-square-foot home onto the 1.22-acre lot that was both larger and larger was higher than city regulations allowed. Back then he said the house would last forever.

Bel-Air neighbors feared the code-breaking property would slide down the hill and crush the houses below and took him to court, where an LA County judge declared the bulky building a “public hazard.” and ordered the demolition.

After a failed attempt to stop the destruction caused by bankruptcy, the Hadid-affiliated company eventually had to launch it for $ 8.5 million. With no takers, the price was eventually lowered to $ 5.5 million before being auctioned off by Premiere Estates Auction Co for $ 5 million.

Burger heiress makes a small fortune

Lynsi Snyder's 4 acre estate.

Lynsi Snyder’s 4 hectare estate includes a palatial mansion, guest house, swimming pool, tennis court, basketball court and two-hole golf course.

(IM Real Estate Photography / David Guettler Photography)

The town of Bradbury saw its most expensive sale in years when Lynsi Snyder, owner and heir to burger chain In-N-Out, sold her Mediterranean mansion for $ 16.25 million.

It’s a loss to Snyder, who bought the nearly 19,000-square-foot home from former Dodgers star Adrián Beltré in 2012 for $ 17.21 million. She first launched it for $ 19.8 million in 2017 before dropping the price to $ 16.8 million this year, records show.

The lavish estate extends over 4 acres in Bradbury Estates, a gated community just a few miles from Baldwin Park, where Snyder’s grandparents started the first In-N-Out in 1948.

Spotify Brings Hub to Downtown LA

A conference table equipped with microphones is located in a library-like room.

The main studio on Spotify’s new campus.

(Genaro Molina / Los Angeles Times)

By the time Executive Courtney Holt joined Spotify four years ago, the music streaming giant had outgrown its Sunset Boulevard office and teams were scattered across the Los Angeles borough, writes Wendy Lee.

The workforce continued to expand as the Swedish company expanded into the podcasting business and acquired LA production companies, Ringer and Parcast. The need to create a central space where everyone can work together became even more important.

Step into Pod City, the centerpiece of Spotify’s sprawling new campus in the Arts District of downtown Los Angeles.

The campus – which can accommodate up to 600 employees – includes 18 podcast studios, a theater, an indoor stage and places where musicians can tinker with vintage instruments, including a piano that was once made by singer-songwriter Norah Jones was used.

Podcast delves into millennial home purchases

Single family homes in the Historic Oak Park neighborhood.

Single family homes on 3rd Avenue on 42nd Street in the Historic Oak Park neighborhood in January.

(Gary Coronado / Los Angeles Times)

Few places in the country are more expensive to buy than California, but even here, recent increases in home values ​​have been astounding, writes Liam Dillon.

The median sales price for a single family home in the state rose 12% over the past year to $ 798,440, according to the California Assn. from brokers. Home buyers, especially first time buyers, are increasingly having to shell out more of their incomes and savings to get into the market.

In the latest episode of “Gimme Shelter: The California Housing Crisis Podcast”Dillon, a Los Angeles Times reporter, and Manuela Tobias of CalMatters talk to a millennial first home buyer about how to buy a home.

That guest is Matt Levin, former Gimme Shelter co-host who is now a reporter for the public broadcaster Marketplace. Levin bought his home in Sacramento in early 2021, and the podcast explores how the COVID-19 pandemic has changed home buyers’ expectations.

What we read

Jeff Bezos is the second richest person in the world, so his real estate portfolio is of course one of the best. Architectural Digest made a list of homes he has bought over the years, including a Seattle estate that he bought in 1998 and a Hawaiian estate that he acquired for $ 78 million in 2021.

New year, same trends. US house prices rose 18.4% in October, with all 20 cities on the dataset seeing double-digit year-over-year gains. AP has the details.

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