Holmby Hills LuxuryReal Estate
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In the upper echelons of luxury real estate, no community can set the bar higher than Holmby Hills. Residing in this upscale hillside neighborhood in Los Angeles is as good as living the American dream. In fact, it has been called home by America’s biggest A-listers and personalities, from Walt Disney to Kylie Jenner.
Sitting at an altitude of 147 meters above sea level, Holmby Hills ensures that its residents have utmost privacy and proximity to the most exclusive amenities in Los Angeles. When exploring other parts of L.A. or California, Interstate 405 is easily accessible.
This luxury real estate guide on Holmby Hills will give discerning buyers a glimpse of what’s in store for them in this high-end neighborhood.
The 101 on Holmby Hills
Holmby Hills is blessed with breathtaking panoramic views of the Los Angeles Basin. Tucked right in the center of the county, it is flanked by two other affluent neighborhoods: Beverly Hills on the east and Bel Air on the west. Together, these three communities form the Los Angeles Platinum Triangle — a nickname that speaks volumes about the residents who live here.
This neighborhood is also part of the Westside, a residential and commercial district that boasts world-class education and premium shopping destinations. The prestigious University of California, Los Angeles is just over a mile away. As for shopping centers, Westfield Century City plays host to posh retailers, unique shops, abundant dining options, and a full cinematic experience.
The famed Sunset Boulevard cuts through Holmby Hills and divides it into north and south sections. From here, it’s easy to get to LA’s main attractions or to nearby neighborhoods.
For instance, from the connecting Bellagio Road or St. Pierre Road, the commute to Bel Air is less than 15 minutes. Those who wish to explore Beverly Hills can follow the eastern stretch of Sunset Boulevard or keep heading south along Greenway or Bedford Drive.
Interstate 405, the nearest freeway, is the fastest route to Los Angeles International Airport and other destinations in California.
Holmby Hills Luxury Real Estate
Unparalleled views, bespoke architectural designs, and a wide range of luxury home features are hallmarks of Holmby Hills mansions, so expect only the best from this one-of-a-kind real estate market.
What to expect from Holmby Hills mansions
Homes for sale in Holmby Hills are typically multi-million-dollar estates with expansive lot sizes. Luxury homebuyers have a wealth of options to choose from, ranging from a glamorous, nine-bedroom estate inspired by the Reina Sofia Museum in Madrid to a European-style chateau located along Sunset Boulevard. Unlike Bel Air, residents have less architectural restrictions to follow in Holmby Hills, resulting in a dazzling array of designs and takes on luxury living.
Architectural styles and home features
Houses in Holmby Hills showcase different architectural styles, most notably:
- Italian revival
- Château style
- Hollywood regency
- Mid-century modern
The following features are standard in Holmby Hills luxury real estate:
- Tennis courts
- Swimming pool and spa
- Multi-story guest houses
- Multi-car garage
- Meditation garden
- Spacious lawns and lush hedges
- Outdoor and formal dining
- Home bar with marble countertops
- Home theater and entertainment complexes
- Private library
- Wine cellars
A Storied History
Long before Holmby Hills became the venue for L.A. ‘s prime luxury real estate, the land on which it was built was a witness to centuries of history.
The first group of settlers in the area was the Tongva-Gabrieliño group of Native Americans who stayed here for thousands of years.
The arrival of Spanish explorers and settlers on the West Coast during the 1500s gave this region a Hispanic face. Cities, natural landmarks, and buildings were eventually given Spanish names.
When Spain ceded California to newly independent Mexico in 1821, a certain Maximo Alanis – widely considered as the first-ever property owner in Los Angeles County – was able to obtain ownership of a land grant for the approximately 4.4-acre Rancho San José de Buenos Ayres from former governor Manuel Micheltorena.
The Wolfskill Ranch
Rancho San Jose de Buenos Ayres was still under Alanis even after California joined the United States. But he would eventually sell around half of it to businessman and politician Benjamin Davis Wilson in 1858. Nearly 30 years later, a land dispute involving a railroad construction’s right of way saw this portion of the ranch go under the ownership of John Wolfskill, who would rename it to Wolfskill Ranch.
Around 400 acres from the Wolfskill Ranch would then be sold to Arthur Letts, Sr. of renowned department stores like The Broadway and Bullock’s. It was he who developed the land in 1919 and gave it the name, Holmby Hills — after Holdenby, his birthplace in England.
After Letts passed away in 1923, Harold Janss — his son-in-law — fulfilled his vision for a master-planned neighborhood.
From underutilized land to prime property
Toward the late 1920s and beyond — and owing to its proximity to Beverly Hills — Holmby Hills became home to the wealthiest business people and Hollywood’s darlings from its Golden Age.
Zoning rules were formed to provide large estate lots (up to four acres) to potential property owners. And, unlike many places throughout Los Angeles and California, street names in Holmby Hills were derived from places in Letts’s home country (e.g., Conway Avenue from Conwy, Wales and Mapleton Drive from Mapleton in Derbyshire, England).
The Englishman’s touch reflected even the neighborhood’s street lamps. These lighting fixtures from the 1920s still exist and uniquely distinguish Holmby Hills from its counterparts in the Platinum Triangle.
With Holmby Hills’ long history and connections to Hollywood, it’s unsurprising that the neighborhood is home to properties that boast distinguished provenance.
The Manor, so far the largest home in Los Angeles and formerly custom-built and owned by legendary TV producer Aaron Spelling, was sold a number of times. Spelling had the home rebuilt from the ground up after razing crooner Bing Crosby’s original 1932 home. This massive mansion now belongs to an anonymous owner after Petra Ecclestone (Formula One heiress) sold the estate in 2019.
And of course, who doesn’t know about the notorious Playboy Mansion, the erstwhile residence of the magazine’s founder, Hugh Hefner? This home was his property for over 40 years up to 2016 when he sold it to Greek-American billionaire Daren Metropoulos for $100 million. Hefner had one condition for the sale, though — that he be allowed to rent the home indefinitely until he passed away in 2017.
Living In Holmby Hills
Holmby Hills offers unmatched levels of comfort and privacy to its residents.
While it does have a public park, the neighborhood is purely residential and highly secure. Personalities here are basically neighbors who are fairly familiar with each other.
Residents often flock to exclusive parties and events held at their respective estates. Those who wish to explore L.A.’s bar and nightlife scene can drive a few minutes to nearby Beverly Hills or to the mixed-use district of Westwood.
Things to do in and around Holmby Hills
- Enjoy open spaces
Holmby Park treats its visitors to various outdoor amenities that everyone can enjoy. These include barbecue pits, picnic areas, blowing greens, walking and jogging paths, and a play area for kids.
Golf enthusiasts can book tee times at Armand Hammer Golf Course. This 18-hole, par-54 course will suit both seasoned and novice golfers. The nearby Los Angeles Country Club is another option.
- Discover exclusive shopping locations
Rodeo Drive is a top shopping destination in nearby Beverly Hills. Aside from designer products and rare boutiques, visitors can find five-star hotels and restaurants here.
Westfield Century City, meanwhile, is a mega-shopping mall with an outdoor-centric design spanning 1.3 million sq. ft. of space. You will find over 200 restaurants and luxury establishments here.
- Savor culinary masterpieces and the finest brews and spirits
Conveniently located in the heart of Los Angeles, Holmby Hills has easy access to all the best bars, cafés, and restaurants that the city has to offer. For starters, you can dress up and enjoy drinks at The Club Bar at The Peninsula. Its excellent selection of wines and spirits includes Laurent-Perrier, cognacs, and single-malt whiskeys. Lounge on fine leather chairs and take in the timeless early 20th-century ambiance.
On a nice weekend, grab brunch in Café Gratitude, which specializes in hearty plant-based meals. They also have an outstanding coffee, juice, and cocktail selection, some of which contain health-boosting activated charcoal.
For essential Los Angeles dining, head to Spago on Canon Drive in Beverly Hills. This sleek restaurant offers award-winning dishes created by chef and restaurateur extraordinaire Wolfgang Puck. Try their seasonal ala carte menu and multi-course California Tasting menu for an unforgettable dining experience.
- Visit the Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts
Also known as The Wallis, this cultural hub plays host to some of the best performances in theater, opera, cinema, and classical music. The oldest building in the complex was the headquarters of the Beverly Hills Post Office, dating back to 1933. When post office staff moved to a new location 60 years later, the historic structure was preserved and the cultural center was built around it.
FAQs about Holmby Hills, CA
Here are common questions people ask about Holmby Hills and its neighboring communities, as well as their corresponding answers:
Who Are The Most Famous Personalities That Lived Here?
Apart from the ones already mentioned earlier, notable Holmby Hills residents (past and present) include Frank Sinatra, Barbra Streisand, Rod Stewart, Michael Jackson, Sean Combs (more popularly known as Puff Daddy), and Jeremy Renner.
Among the more recent residents is Kylie Jenner, who recently purchased a 15,350-sq. ft. mansion with seven bedrooms and 14 bathrooms. Another notable new resident is award-winning writer and producer, Bradley Bell. Real estate mogul, Donald Bren, also lives in Holmby Hills.
What’s The Most Famous Home In Holmby Hills?
Hefner’s Playboy Mansion is usually the first house that comes to mind when Holmby Hills is mentioned – and for good reason.
The 22,000-sq. ft. home was constantly in the public spotlight. It was the setting of the reality series, Girls Next Door that featured the eccentric lifestyles of its inhabitants. Countless parties and events were hosted by Hugh Hefner, as well — from award shows and film screenings to celebrity powwows and Halloween night parties.
Here’s a lesser-known fact. Before it came to be the controversial Playboy Mansion, this sprawling estate had more conservative origins. Built in the mid-1920s for Arthur Letts Jr., heir to the Letts fortune, the property was sold to Hefner in 1971 by entrepreneur and inventor, Louis Statham. The price tag was set at $1.05 million — a staggering amount at that time.
What Homes For Sale In Holmby Hills Were The Most Expensive?
Due to its lofty reputation in luxury real estate, Holmby Hills has homes sold at prices that soared past the traditional benchmark luxury home values.
The Manor was initially listed for $200 million in 2016. After a series of price drops, it was eventually sold for almost $120 million in 2019 to an anonymous buyer.
When the Playboy Mansion was sold in mid-2016, it fetched $100 million. But during its debut in the market, Hefner placed a $200-million price tag on it.
Just before 2020 came to a close, the famous Owlwood estate was sold for $88 million. It was the third most expensive home sale that year. According to public records, Calch Urban Investments LLC was designated as the buyer. However, the actual person behind the purchase remains unknown.
Does The Holmby Hills Have Homes For Rent?
While Holmby Hills is known more for massive properties used as primary residences by its owners, one can still find homes for rent here. Some of them can be found along Comstock Avenue, Wilshire Boulevard, and Mapleton Drive. Monthly rental rates range from $10,000 to $100,000. Several luxury vacation rentals are also available in nearby Beverly Hills and in the communities in Benedict Canyon.
What Differentiates Holmby Hills From The Rest Of The Platinum Triangle?
Aside from its English-style vintage street lamps, Holmby Hills is also known to be an incredibly private neighborhood. This is precisely why this neighborhood is preferred by celebrities and industry giants who want to have a sanctuary away from the public eye. Buyers looking for a place of solitude should highly consider Holmby Hills in their luxury real estate search.
Holmby Hills Luxury Realtor: Joyce Rey Global Luxury Real Estate
Those considering purchasing properties in Holmby Hills should seek out Joyce Rey —the best luxury Realtor specializing in Los Angeles Platinum Triangle homes.
A professional in her field, Joyce is known for some of the biggest real estate transactions in history. Having worked with numerous Fortune 500 and celebrity clients, she has racked up over $4.5 billion in career sales.
Joyce’s resume includes the sale of the Owlwood and Pickfair estates on multiple occasions in the 1970s. More recently, she sold the massive 10-acre Chartwell Estate for $150 million in 2019.