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    Inside Bill and Melinda Gates’s Bonkers Portfolio of American Real Estate

    After 27 years of marriage, amassing a planetary fortune and founding a namesake philanthropic enterprise with an endowment of nearly $50 billion, Bill and Melinda Gates announced this week that they’ve decided to split up in the most modern of ways, via Twitter. The split appears to be amicable, and the erstwhile couple says they will continue their roles as co-chairs and trustees of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. They will, however, need to divvy up their Brobdingnagian pile of assets, a no doubt Byzantine enterprise that has people around the world wondering who will get what.

    It’s often said that the Microsoft founder doesn’t like to spend his money frivolously. Frivolous, however, is in the eye of the beholder and often depends on the size of one’s bank account. And, for Gates, currently ranked by the bean counters at Forbes as the fourth richest person on earth with a net worth of around $130 billion, not spending frivolously means maintaining a fleet of Porsches and other high-performance sports cars, traveling by private jet—reportedly a Bombardier BD-700 Global Express that costs upwards of $40 million—and, though it’s worth but a tiny fraction of his overall wealth, presiding over a property portfolio easily valued in excess of a quarter-billion bucks.
    It’s not clear exactly how many homes the Gates actually own, and some of their estates comprise numerous parcels and several houses. There are, though, at least eight houses and compounds spread across the United States that, according to tax records, have a combined annual tax bill that tallies up to about $4 million. That might be enough to give an ordinary millionaire a million sleepless nights, but for Gates, the yearly tax bills are nothing more than pecuniary child’s play, less, in fact, than he earns in a single day.

    Based on how much wealth he added to his bottom line over the past year, according to Business Insider, he earned about $4,630 per second. That means at a spending rate of $1 million per day it would take him about 400 years to spend his fortune. Business Insider went on to determine that he’s 66% richer than the entirety of the British monarchy, has more money than the richest person in Asia and the richest person in China, combined, and could give every person in the world $15 and still have $28 billion to spare.

    The Gates’ primary property in Medina, Washington. 

    Photo Courtesy: Wikimedia Commons

    The Gates’ primary residence has long been a custom-built mansion that overlooks Lake Washington in Medina, Washington. The Pacific Lodge-inspired contemporary extravaganza, designed in conjunction between Bohlin Cywinski Jackson and Cutler Anderson Architects, and often referred to in the press as Xanadu 2.0, after the estate of the lead character in “Citizen Kane,” measures in at about 66,000 square feet.
    Some of the notable creature comforts include seven bedrooms, two dozen bathrooms, six kitchens, including one that services a 2,200-square-foot ballroom/meeting space, garaging for a couple dozen cars and a 20-seat Art Deco-style theater. There’s also a 60-foot swimming pool with an underwater sound system, 2,500 square feet of health and wellness facilities complete with gym, sauna and steam room, a trampoline room with 20-foot ceiling, and a 2,100-square-foot library with a bookcase that swings open to reveal a hidden bar. Outside, there’s a sport court, a salmon and trout-stocked stream, a boat dock and a private lakefront beach with sand imported by barge from the Caribbean island of St. Lucia.
    And, of course, the tech gadgetry is next level. Occupants and guests each wear a pin with pre-set preferences for lighting, temperature and audio-visual systems. The pins communicate with sensors throughout the house, and as one moves from room to room not only with one’s music selection of choice follow but the lights and climate systems will alter themselves automatically to correlate with preset preferences.
    And, because all that just isn’t enough, in addition to the main residence, which tax records show has a value of $130 million and a yearly tax bill of more than $2.3 million, the Gates own at least a dozen surrounding properties that altogether span more than ten acres with at least six additional luxury homes.

    The couple’s Indiana Wells home in California. 

    Photo Courtesy: Google

    The Gates dropped $12.5 million in 1999 for a deluxe desert mansion that sits alongside the manicured greens of the exclusive Vintage Club in Indian Wells, Calif., a private and exceedingly-posh golf and resort enclave about 20 miles southeast of Palm Springs.

    Not many details about the property are publicly available, but tax records and other digital resources indicate the 1.33-acre estate includes a main residence of nearly 14,000 square feet built in 1993 with six bedrooms and 7.5 bathrooms plus a huge swimming pool shaped like a guitar and vast sweep of manicured lawn.
    The Vintage Club’s other homeowners include a bevy of billionaires, Charles Koch, Bill Gross, Dennis Washington and Ingrid Flick among them.

    One of the Gates’ Rancho Sante Fe properties. 

    Photo Courtesy:

    In 2014, after it had been on the market for a few years at declining prices that started at a wildly optimistic $29.95 million and dropped to about $25 million, the Gates swooped into ritzy Rancho Santa Fe, Calif, a Beverly Hills-style suburb about 20 miles north of San Diego, and scooped up diet guru Jenny Craig’s 228-acre horse farm in an off-market deal for a discounted price of $18 million.
    Then known as Rancho Paseana, and now known as Evergate Stables, the thoroughbred training and competitive hunting-jumping facility has been upgraded over the last handful of years. However, at the time of its 2014 sale, the farm includes four 30-stall barns, plus a fifth that will hold another 21 horses, an office and veterinarian suite, a guesthouse, a couple of 30-acre pastures and a 3/4-mile racetrack.

    The couples Rancho Paseana property. 

    Photo Courtesy: Google

    At the time the Gates bought Rancho Paseana in 2014, they already owned — and still own — a four-plus-acre estate at the tony Del Mar Country Club. Perched on a low ridge at the end of a palm tree-lined drive with panoramic views over Rancho Paseana, which is now called Evergate Stables, the nearly 11,000-square-foot Mediterranean villa was acquired, per tax records, in 1999 for $5.1 million.

    The Gates’s oceanfront compound in Del Mar, California. 

    Photo Courtesy:

    After two decades bunking periodically in Rancho Santa Fe, the Gates decided last year they’d like a place to hunker down at the ocean and, just as the Covid-19 lockdowns began to sweep across the nation, sealed the deal on the much-publicized $43 million purchase of an oceanfront compound along one of the most exclusive streets in the affluent seaside community of Del Mar, about six miles west of their holdings in Rancho Santa Fe.

    Designed by renowned local architect Ken Ronchetti, the single-level home presides over about 120-feet of beach frontage and measures in at a comfortably large but well short of humongous 5,800 square feet with six bedrooms and 3.5 bathrooms, plus a pair of guesthouses. Marketing materials from the time of the sale indicate the unconventionally bifurcated estate —the main house sits on one side of the street and a secondary structure is on the other — offers a plethora of leisure and recreation options including a home theater, a glass-tiled swimming pool, a 10-person hot tub, a health and fitness suite and, of course, a huge terrace with unparalleled views up and down the sugary sand.

    A private Cody, Wyoming mansion owned by the duo. 

    Photo Courtesy: Google

    CODY, WYO.
    Back in 2009 it was widely reported Gates shelled out somewhere in the neighborhood of $9 million for a sublimely beautiful ranch of almost 500 acres nestled into the foothills of Carter Mountain about 20 miles outside of Cody, Wyoming.
    At the time of the transaction, marketing materials for the property indicated the fairly remote ranch is approached down a seven-mile-long drive with a 15,000-square-foot main residence known as Irma Lake Lodge. Additionally, there’s a five-bedroom guesthouse, a caretaker’s house, and a three-room cottage built by American Old West legend Buffalo Bill Cody who settled the land sometime around the turn of the 20th century. It was Cody, in fact, who gave the four small and pristine lakes that dot the ranch their names: Irma, Lilly, Arta and Natalie.

    The massive Rocky Mountain getaway, Yellowstone Club. 

    Photo Courtesy: Google

    The Gates family maintains a substantial Rocky Mountain getaway in the ultra-prestigious Yellowstone Club, a 13,600-acre members-only ski and golf resort community just west of Big Sky, Montana, where some of the other high net worth members are reported to include Justin Timberlake and Jessica Biel, TV producer Burt Sugarman and entertainment news journalist Mary Hart, Frank McCourt, former owner of the L.A Dodgers, Peter Chernin, former president of News Corp., and billionaire hotelier Barry Sternlicht.

    It’s not clear how much the Gates paid for the multi-acre estate property that sits on a wooded ridge with magical wrap-around mountain views, but becoming a member of the club is not for mere financial mortals. Membership reportedly requires a roughly $300,000 initiation fee, the purchase of a home, which typically start at more than $5 million, and close to $40,000 in annual fees.
    Though there’s a tradition of members not talking about each other, an unnamed member recalls in a 2009 New York Times article that one of the attractions to Yellowstone Club for the Gates is the high-level of privacy and security that allows the family to take to the slopes without bodyguards.

    The multiacre spread in Wellington, Florida owned by the Gates. 

    Photo Courtesy:

    The Gates have had a foot in the South Florida real estate trenches since at least 2009 when they paid $5 million for a waterfront estate in low-key Hobe Sound. That property was sold in 2018 — at a million-dollar loss — but some years ago, no doubt because their daughter Jennifer is an award-winning equestrian, the Gates shifted their property focus to the affluent equestrian-oriented village of Wellington, about 17 miles west of Palm Beach at the swampy edge of The Everglades.
    The Gates didn’t just buy a small training facility, however. Between 2013 and 2019, they ponied up close to $46 million for no fewer than five properties that comprise more than 25 contiguous acres within the exclusive and guard-gated Mallet Hill enclave. Their most recent acquisition in the horsey community came in 2019 when they splashed out $21 million in an off-market deal for a 7.7-acre spread with a recently built mansion.  More

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    Ryan Murphy Just Sold His Spanish Colonial Revival-Style Home in Beverly Hills for $16.5 Million

    Though it took about a year and a half, and he was compelled to come down a considerable amount off its original price of nearly $18 million, film and television dynamo Ryan Murphy has sold his celeb-pedigreed Beverly Hills mansion for its full $16.25 million final asking price.

    The six-time Emmy winner, whose full slate of projects is hardly limited to “Ratched,” Lone Star” and “Pose,” bought the encyclopedically refurbished and fastidiously maintained, Ralph Flewelling-designed 1920s Spanish Colonial Revival-style residence more than 11 years ago for $10 million from famously architecture and design savvy Oscar-winning actor Diane Keaton. However, he hasn’t lived there—at least not full time—since he and his growing family moved to an even bigger spread in nearby Brentwood a couple of years ago.

    Initially restored by Keaton, after which it was featured Architectural Digest, the nearly 8,500-square-foot home is uniquely entered through a combination foyer/library under a soaring groin-vaulted ceiling and showcases dark wood and glossy terra-cotta tile floors, numerous arched fireplaces, hand-forged wrought iron accents, exposed wood ceiling and period light fixtures.

    Plush and refined with a total of seven bedrooms and seven bathrooms (plus two powder rooms), the home’s main living spaces include ample formal living and dining rooms, a gourmet kitchen and a den that doubles as a media room. Many rooms open through French doors to the backyard and/or to an arched colonnade that wraps around a bricked courtyard that’s shaded by a couple of pepper trees with a fountain at its center.
    Two of the main-house’s six bedrooms are on the main floor and suitable for guests or staff, while the sprawling owner’s suite offers a fireplace, two bathrooms and two balconies, one that overlooks the courtyard and the other with a view over the backyard. The house also includes a study, a fitness room and a multi-room guesthouse.
    Strands of light that span the backyard are reflected in the simply rectangular, ever-so-slightly above-ground swimming pool, and towering cacti make a prickly fence around a large patio between the main house and guest house.
    The one-of-a-kind property was jointly listed with Kevin Augunas and Chris Cortazzo at Compass, while the buyer was repped in the deal by Crosby Doe at Crosby Doe Associates.

    Last year Murphy and his husband, photographer David Miller, sold a Laguna Beach, Calif., compound for $10.65 million, while at the same time two of their homes, the aforementioned Brentwood spread and a bespoke New York City townhouse, were featured in an Architectural Digest article penned by Murphy with photos by Miller.
    See more images of the mansion below: More

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    Serena Williams Lists Beverly Hills Home For $7.5 Million (PHOTOS)

    Front Exterior

    LOCATION: 12043 Summit Circle, Beverly Hills, California
    BEDROOMS & BATHROOMS: 5 bedrooms & 7 bathrooms
    PRICE: $7,495,999
    Tennis superstar Serena Williams has listed her Beverly Hills home for just under $7.5 million. Located at 12043 Summit Circle in the guard-gated Summit Estates, the Spanish Contemporary style home was built in 2017 and is situated on 1/4 of an acre of home.

    It features approximately 6,000 square feet of living space with 5 bedrooms, 7 bathrooms, foyer with staircase, formal living & dining rooms, gourmet kitchen, family room, rec room with wet bar, gym, wine cellar, 2-car garage and more.
    Outdoor features include a gated driveway, covered patio with BBQ and a swimming pool. More

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    Lakers Star Dennis Schröder Snags a Mansion in the LA Suburbs for $4.3 Million

    Last November, German basketball superstar Dennis Schröder was traded to the Lakers following stints with the Atlanta Hawks and Oklahoma Thunder. Records reveal the 27-year-old Braunschweig native — who is currently eyeing a potential contract extension worth tens of millions — and his wife Ellen Ziolo have now put down some SoCal real estate roots in the form of a $4.3 million San Fernando Valley mansion purchase.

    The sexed-up contemporary estate lies in Tarzana, set on a long and narrow lot behind forbidding black walls and gates. Built in 2017, the house offers a mostly wall-free floorplan with the dining, living, and family rooms merged into one open space. There’s a double-sided black marble fireplace, while the chef’s kitchen is “spectacular,” proclaims the listing, with an enormous SubZero fridge, custom cabinetry, and imported stonework. Two sets of Fleetwood doors open to a outdoor loggia with its own fireplace and full kitchen/BBQ.

    Dennis Schröder’s new Tarzana mansion 

    Six ensuite bedrooms are arranged throughout the main house, including an upstairs master retreat with dual private balconies, dual dressing rooms, and a resort-style bathroom decked out in exotic wood and stone. Other impressive home amenities include a home theater that seats 10 moviegoers, an office space, and a glass-walled wine cellar tucked underneath the curvaceous main staircase. Perhaps the most unusual features is a vast rooftop deck with its own BBQ, spotlights, and over-the-treetops views of the pancake-flat San Fernando Valley.
    But the main house is only the very first act of this real estate show; the .35-acre property is fully improved with a giant L-shaped lawn that passes by a large swimming pool/spa combo. Beyond that lies a two-story guesthouse with another ensuite bedroom and a second kitchen, plus room for a gym. Best of all, however — at least from Shröder’s perspective — is the concrete basketball court that lies at the far rear of the property, offering a secluded space to hone his professional game.
    Kobi Costa of Compass held the listing; Michael Henderson, also of Compass, repped Schröder.
    Check out more photos of Schröder’s new home below: More

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    Jake Paul Lists California Home For $7 Million (PHOTOS)

    Front Exterior

    Popular Youtuber Jake Paul has just listed his California home for $7 million. Located at 23590 Park South Street in Calabasas, the home sits on 3.5 acres of land and was built in 1990. Jake purchased the home back in 2017 for $6.925 million.
    It features approximately 15,045 square feet of living space with 8 bedrooms, 10 full and 2 half bathrooms, 3-story foyer with staircase, 2-story great room, formal dining room, gourmet kitchen, breakfast room, family room with wet bar, office, home theater with wet bar, 4-car garage and more.
    Outdoor features include a gated entrance, motor court, terraces and a swimming pool with spa. More