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Hot Property: Gene Simmons is selling his Beverly Hills mansion

Jack Flemming
·7 min read
The amenity-loaded mansion in Benedict Canyon spans 16,000 square feet and includes a swimming pool with a 60-foot slide.
The amenity-loaded mansion in Benedict Canyon spans 16,000 square feet and includes a swimming pool with a 60-foot slide. (Christopher Amitrano)

After 34 years in Beverly Hills, Gene Simmons of KISS fame is ready to bounce. His amenity-loaded mansion in Benedict Canyon is on the market for $22 million.

That’s quite an uptick from the $1.34 million he paid for the property back in 1986, records show.

It’s the rock star’s second listing in Southern California this year. Over the summer, he put his hillside home in Laurel Canyon on the market for $2.2 million.

The Beverly Hills estate is the more impressive of the two by far, centering on a 16,000-square-foot mansion. High-end amenities fill out the rest of the compound, including a swimming pool with a 60-foot slide, a tennis court and parking for 35 cars.

A tree-lined driveway winds toward the custom residence, which is entered by a pair of sweeping staircases. Inside, a 40-foot foyer sets a dramatic tone.

The voluminous living room is brightened by a three-story wall of windows, and other spaces include a chandelier-topped dining room, center-island kitchen, library and family room under ornate coffered ceilings. Seven bedrooms are spread across the floor plan — many of which open to decks and balconies overlooking the landscaped grounds.

Josh and Matt Altman of Douglas Elliman hold the listing.

A native of Israel, Simmons, 71, co-founded KISS in the early 1970s and serves as the band’s bassist and vocalist. Known for over-the-top makeup and costumes, the New York-based group has released 20 studio albums and is one of the bestselling bands ever with more than 75 million records sold.

NHL legend looks to net a buyer

Hockey legend Wayne Gretzky is looking to score a huge sale in Thousand Oaks, where his Colonial-style mansion on nearly seven acres is on the market for $22.9 million.

It’s actually Gretzky’s second time selling the home. The NHL Hall of Famer was the compound’s original owner after having it built in 2002, but five years later, he sold it to former baseball star Lenny Dykstra for $18.5 million.

The sale kicked off a dramatic saga that saw Dykstra lose the property to foreclosure after declaring bankruptcy, at which point it sold at auction on the steps of the Ventura County Courthouse for $760,712 (with the winning bidder taking on about $12 million in debt owed on the property).

Then, two years ago, Gretzky reunited with the home, shelling out $13.5 million for the promontory estate. That’s $5 million less than the price at which he had sold it to Dykstra roughly a decade earlier; if he gets his price this time around, he stands to make $9.4 million in profit.

Tucked behind gates in the Sherwood Country Club, the grounds include an elegant Colonial-style home designed by Richard Landry, two guesthouses, a swimming pool, tennis court and entertainment area surrounded by rolling lawns and manicured gardens. In total, the homes have six bedrooms and 7.5 bathrooms across 13,300 square feet.

A motor court approaches the main residence, winding its way toward a porte-cochere entry lined with columns. Inside, shades of black and white fill formal spaces such as a chandelier-topped living room, marble kitchen, movie theater, billiards room and gym.

Upstairs, decks in both the main home and guesthouse take in sweeping views of Lake Sherwood and the Santa Monica Mountains.

Gretzky, 59, spent 20 seasons in the NHL, and his record for most goals and assists in league history earned him the nickname “the Great One.” The Canada native spent time with the Oilers, Kings, Blues and Rangers and held 61 NHL records at the time of his retirement.

Arvin Haddadzadeh of the Agency holds the listing.

He's laughing all the way to the bank

Comedian-actor Russell Peters cashed out in Hidden Hills, selling his 1.5-acre estate for $7.8 million.

Though it sold for $700,000 less than his asking price, it’s not a bad deal for the Canada native. Records show he shelled out $6.45 million for the property in 2017 and kept things pretty much the same during his stay.

Hidden Hills — a gated city characterized by large lots and equestrian activities — has been a hot spot for celebrity sales over the last few months. Pop star The Weeknd and Clippers forward Paul George both listed their homes there over the summer, and shortly after, Miley Cyrus dropped $5 million on a traditional-style estate.

The more than 11,600-square-foot home sits on about 1.5 acres in guard-gated Hidden Hills.
The more than 11,600-square-foot home sits on about 1.5 acres in guard-gated Hidden Hills. (NearMap)

Peters’ place is anchored by an 11,600-square-foot mansion built in 1998. A porte-cochere entry sits in front, and out back, a resort-style space tacks on a swimming pool, spa, waterfall, gazebo, playground and putting green all surrounded by lawns and landscaping.

Inside, dual staircases wind through a grand chandelier-topped entry. Tile covers most of the traditional living spaces, but the main highlight comes in the office: a decked-out space with a kitchen, wet bar, aquarium, cigar humidor and a pair of fireplaces. Other amenities include a 14-seat theater and wine cellar.

Eight bedrooms and nine bathrooms complete the two-story floor plan. Upstairs, the owner’s suite opens to a private balcony with sweeping mountain views.

Peters, 50, has produced six comedy specials including “Outsourced” and 2020’s “Deported.” As an actor, he’s appeared in “Source Code,” “Chef” and “Supercon,” and he also lent his voice to the 2016 film “The Jungle Book.”

Benn and Desiree Zuckerman of Rodeo Realty handled both ends of the deal.

Forte sheds a fort

It was smooth sailing for Will Forte in Santa Monica’s Ocean Park neighborhood, where the “SNL” veteran sold his 107-year-old Craftsman for $2.475 million. He found a buyer a month after listing and hauled in $25,000 more than he was asking.

The comedy actor nearly tripled his money on the deal; records show he paid $840,000 for the property shortly before joining the cast of “Saturday Night Live” in 2002.

For fans of Forte’s work, the 1913 home holds a special place in his career. The dining room is where the actor and his team penned the first episode of his sitcom “The Last Man on Earth,” as well as some of the feature film “MacGruber.”

True to its style, the two-story Craftsman features tapered brick columns supporting a covered front porch. Wood fills the living spaces inside, lining the floors, doors, windows and ceilings.

A brick fireplace anchors the living room, which opens to a sunny eat-in kitchen. Elsewhere are three bedrooms and two bathrooms in about 1,900 square feet, including an owner’s suite with vaulted ceiling and a guest room under a skylight.

The front porch wraps around to a dining area on the side of the home, and out back, there’s a sun deck.

A native of Alameda, Calif., Forte enjoyed an eight-year run on “Saturday Night Live” before more recent projects including “Nebraska” and “The Last Man on Earth,” which he created, wrote and produced. A TV show based on his MacGruber character is set to start next year.

Michael Grady and Jagger Kroener of the Agency held the listing. Mystoura Afolabi of Redfin represented the buyer.

Director buys in Baldwin Hills

Kemp Powers, co-director of the upcoming Pixar film “Soul,” must have liked what he saw in Baldwin Hills. He recently shelled out $1.5 million — $25,000 over the asking price — for a Midcentury ranch house in the neighborhood.

Perched on a hillside lot, the low-slung abode takes in canyon views from a covered patio and backyard filled with colorful succulents. In front, lattice windows and a purple front door provide some curb appeal.

Built in the 1950s but updated since, the single-story home covers just over 2,000 square feet with four bedrooms and 2.5 bathrooms.

The open floor plan is sandwiched between original hardwood floors and beamed ceilings with recessed lighting. A stone fireplace anchors the living room, and the newly remodeled kitchen tacks on a breakfast bar.

A playwright, writer and director, Powers debuted his first play, “One Night in Miami,” in 2013, and a film adaptation directed by Regina King is set for release in December. His other credits include “Star Trek: Discovery” and “Soul,” the animated Pixar film coming to Disney+ on Christmas.

Pamela Lumpkin of Compass held the listing. Obiamaka Nwabuzor of Pacific Playa Realty represented Powers.

This story originally appeared in Los Angeles Times.