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Amazonian Record Breaker

Amazonian Record Breaker

17.02.20

Jeff Bezos, the billionaire founder of Amazon.com, has reportedly splashed US$165m (c.£127.4m) on a legendary house in Beverly Hills.

The property, known as the Jack Warner Estate, sits in 9.4 acres of private grounds on Angelo Drive in Benedict Canyon, with a 13,600 sq ft Neo-classical mansion at its heart. It was not publicly listed for sale. Described by Architectural Digest in 1992 as the “archetypal studio mogul’s estate”, the place was designed by architect Roland Coate in the 1930s for the Warner Bros co-founder. It’s rumoured to contain the floor Napoleon was standing on when he proposed to Josephine, as well as a nine-hole golf course.

Recently-divorced Bezos acquired the home from media magnate David Geffen. Geffen bought it for around $47.5m in 1990 (setting an LA price record at the time, and reportedly all in cash), after Jack Warner’s widowed second wife died.

US property website The Real Deal reports that the deal was done directly between Bezos and Geffen, with no agents on either side; details were hammered out “while socialising” aboard Geffen’s yacht, the Rising Sun, said an unnamed source.

Various reports have suggested that Geffen had been quietly looking to offload the Jack Warner Estate for about two-and-a-half years (he also joked to the New York Times back in 1993 the the property was “a staggeringly stupid thing to buy – do you know an Arab sheik who wants it?”), while Bezos had been actively nine-figure house-hunting in the area.

Bezos is the richest person on the planet, according to Bloomberg, with a net worth thought to be over $130bn. His $165m spend (first reported in The Wall Street Journal) eclipses the previous Los Angeles property price record, $150m, set at the end of last year when Lachlan Murdoch bought the Chartwell Estate (aka the “Beverly Hillbillies” mansion).

The WSJ also reports that Bezos has bought a plot of land from the estate of Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen for $90m.

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