The Manor (Los Angeles)
|Location||594 S Mapleton Drive
Holmby Hills, Los Angeles, California
|Floor area||56,500 square feet (5,250 m2)|
|Design and construction|
|Architect||James Langenheim & Associates|
The Manor, also known as Spelling Manor, is a mansion located in the Holmby Hills neighborhood of Los Angeles, California, across the street from Holmby Park. Constructed in 1988 for television producer Aaron Spelling, it is the largest home in Los Angeles County. It is currently owned by British heiress Petra Stunt, daughter of Formula One racing magnate Bernie Ecclestone. Stunt purchased the home for $85 million after it had been on the market for two years with an asking price of $150 million, making it the most expensive residential real estate listing in the US.
The Manor is a French chateau-style mansion with 123 rooms and 56,000 square feet (5,200 m2) of space on more than 4.6 acres (1.9 ha). It is the largest home in Los Angeles County. Aaron Spelling—widely known as the television producer of series including Dynasty, Charlie's Angels, The Love Boat, Fantasy Island, Beverly Hills, 90210, and Charmed—built The Manor as his private residence.
Designed by architects James Langenheim & Associates and built in 1988 at a cost of $12 million, the two-story house is 51.5 feet (15.7 m) high with a basement and an intermediate level for closets between the second story and attic. The house includes a screening room, gym, bowling alley, three rooms for wrapping presents, four two-car garages, tennis court, and pool. The parking lot accommodates 100 vehicles, and there are also 16 carports. Spelling razed the mansion which previously occupied the site and had been built in 1932 by Gordon Kaufmann and later owned by Bing Crosby.
Controversy and critical reception
What's bigger than a football field, smaller than Hearst Castle, has a bowling alley and an entire floor of closets, and is making some people very annoyed? Aaron and Candy Spelling's 56,500-square-foot (5,250 m2) mansion in Holmby Hills. The French chateau, under construction now for two years, has turned the corner of Mapleton and Club View drives into a gawker's paradise. Sprawled across 6 acres (2.4 ha) on what once was the Bing Crosby estate, the house dwarfs the sizable mansions on the block and looms large over tranquil Holmby Park near Wilshire Boulevard.
After its completion, Los Angeles Times architecture critic Sam Hall Kaplan panned the structure as one of the region's worst projects built in the 1980s:
Aaron Spelling residence, which at 56,500 square feet (5,250 m2), should be considered a congregate living facility and not a single-family home, and therefore in violation of Holmby Hills zoning. What Spelling's folly is, of course, is a sad commentary on the distorted values that have taken the architectural form of monster mansions at a time when tens of thousands of persons are homeless.
In popular culture
The Spelling mansion has also been referenced in pop culture. People magazine ran a feature on the massive home, and performer John Perry composed a calypso/rap novelty song about the house called "The Ballad of Aaron and Candy (An Ode to Spelling's Dwelling)". Some of the lyrics were:
See Candy's jewels, see Aaron's money,
Aaron doesn't think being picked on is funny.Spelling's Dwelling…."
See Candy's clothes, see Aaron's pad
See Aaron and Candy's castle make the neighbors mad.
But they're livin' in splendor high above the crowds
60,000 square feet of heaven.
That's Spelling's dwelling, I said
In the movie Legally Blonde, Elle Woods (Reese Witherspoon) described her social standing to Warner Huntington III (Matthew Davis) this way: "I grew up in Bel Air [sic], Warner. Across the street from Aaron Spelling."
In the sitcom Will & Grace several episodes of season five make reference to "a gift-wrapping room like Candy Spelling has".
Spelling died in the mansion on June 23, 2006, from complications of a stroke, at the age of 83. The house was discussed in his obituary:
Mr. Spelling himself, though a self-effacing and extremely shy man in private, put his own vast wealth on display in the late 1980s when he and his wife, Candy, supervised the construction of their home in the Holmby Hills section of Los Angeles. The structure, which like his shows drew mostly scathing reviews, eventually contained 123 rooms over about 56,000 square feet (5,200 m2). It was said to include a bowling alley, an ice rink and an entire wing devoted to his wife's wardrobe.
The Manor was listed for sale in 2009 at an asking price of $150 million—making it the most expensive home listing in America. When the house was listed, Candy Spelling called it the "greatest entertainment house ever" with a "kitchen where you can cook for two or 800". In her 18 years living at The Manor, Spelling recalled, "All the stars came through, Prince Rainier, Prince Charles, Jackie Kennedy—every star from every one of Aaron's shows."
In July 14, 2011, the house was sold to 23-year-old socialite Petra Stunt, daughter of Formula One racing magnate Bernie Ecclestone for $85 million—one of the largest real estate sales in Los Angeles County. Subsequently the chandeliers, wall lights and fireplace mantels were removed by the new owner and the interior was updated. But by July 2014, it was reported that she was looking to sell the mansion for $150 million.
- Beale, Lauren (2009-07-15). "Petra Ecclestone buys Spelling mansion for $85 million". Los Angeles Times.
- "The $150 Million Spelling Manor, Los Angeles, California". Forbes.
- Beale, Lauren; Peter Y. Hong (2009-03-28). "Candy Spelling's Holmby Hills mansion listed for $150 million". Los Angeles Times.
- Stein, Jeannine (1988-04-08). "The House of Spelling Massive Construction Project in Holmby Hills Flusters Some Neighbors". Los Angeles Times.
- Sam Hall Kaplan (1989-12-31). "Closing a Decade of Design: Some Hits and Misses". Los Angeles Times.
- Elizabeth Hayes (1988-05-01). "House on the Hill". Los Angeles Times.
- Steve Harvey (2001-11-28). "Los Angeles; Guinness Stunts in California Take Honors for High Flying, Low Flipping". Los Angeles Times.
- Carter, Bill (June 24, 2006). "Aaron Spelling, Prolific Television Producer, Dies at 83". The New York Times. Retrieved 2009-05-11.
- Veiga, Alex (March 27, 2009). "$150 MILLION: Aaron Spelling's LA Mansion On Market". The Huffington Post.
- "Christie's Great Estates Property Information on The Manor". Christie's Great Estates. December 13, 2009.
- Wellman, Victoria (February 16, 2012). "A Glimpse at Petra Ecclestone's New Take on the Spelling Manor that David Kramer Helped Her Purchase". Archived from the original on February 25, 2012. Retrieved September 11, 2013.
- Beale, Lauren (August 18, 2011). "Candy Spelling's chandeliers, antiques up for sale". Los Angeles Times. Money & Company (blog). Retrieved September 11, 2013.
- Carlyle, Erin (July 28, 2014). "Billionaire Heiress Petra Ecclestone Shopping Spelling Manor For $150 Million". Forbes. Retrieved June 10, 2015.