Tuesday, October 23, 2012
Alexander Skarsgård Buys Hillside Hideaway
LOCATION: Los Angeles, CA
SIZE: 2,479 square feet, 3 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms
YOUR MAMAS NOTES: Despite living and working in Los Angeles for more than half a dozen years, Swedish-born film and television actor Alexander Skarsgård resisted setting down real estate roots in Tinseltown until March (2012)—we first heard from a clever canary we'll call Fatima Figgereditout—when he shelled out $1,850,000 to acquire a sensitively preserved and thoughtfully updated mid-century modern residence pneumatically perched on a private promontory at the tail end of a quiet cul-de-sac in the the celeb-studded hills above L.A.'s upscale, boho-hipster Los Feliz neighborhood.**
The ever-so-slightly but deliciously buck-toothed Mister Skarsgård is probably best known as the powerful, powerfully sexy and emotionally complicated 1,100+ year old vampire Eric Northman on the boob-toob hit series True Blood. Since he arrived in Tinseltown in the early Aughts, the versatile actor has also appeared in a variety of projects including the eye-crossingly stoopid male-model spoof Zoolander, the Emmy-winning mini-series Generation Kill, the recent—and not-particularly-successful—remake of Straw Dogs, and Lars van Trier's psyche-disrupting bone-rattler Melancholia. Several years ago he shook his comely money maker as Lady Gaga's elegant and scrumptiously scruffy man-friend in her music video for Paparazzi. Remember that, kids?
Mister Skarsgård—in case you didn't know—comes from high-profile (if intellectually-minded) Showbiz roots in his native Sweden. His father, Stellan Skarsgård, well-known as a nuanced actor in Sweden and beyond. In addition to the scads of European movies Your Mama has never heard of because, well, we don't follow Swedish cinema very closely the elder Mister Skarsgård has also had notable parts in any number of movies likely to be well known by the average American movie goer (Good Will Hunting, The Avengers and The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo) as well as his fair share of roles in haute-indie films such as the upcoming, two-part Lars van Trier-directed soft-porn psychodrama Nymphomaniac. At the age of 61—and apropos of absolutely nothing pertinent to the real estate related matter at hand—the vigorous and virile elder Mister Skarsgåed recently sired is eighth child with his significantly younger second wife. Imagine for a moment, butter beans, having a (half-)sibling 36 years your junior, as does the younger Mister Skarsgård.
Anyhoo, for the record, Mister Skarsgård's name does not appear on any of the property records Your Mama peeped —it was officially purchased with a generically-named trust—but our mysteriously but always impeccably and accurately well-informed friend and informant, Lucy Spillerguts, seconded Fatima's well-researched celebrity real estate scuttlebutt. None-the-less, puppies, let's use them noggins: This ain't, technically, nuthin' but some silly rumor and gossip.
Listing information from the time of the purchase that Your Mama located on the internets shows the single-story contemporary was designed by modernist-minded architect Phil Brown and built in 1963—for his parents, our research reveals—with 2-3 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms in 2,479 square feet of sun-flooded, steel-framed and glass-walled interior spaces that are dominated by satisfying, gasp-worthy views that stretch over a wide swathe of Los Angeles.
The front door, discreetly set into a deep recess out of view from the street, opens into a roomy front entry space that melts effortlessly into a buoyant, 30+ foot long living/dining combination space with yellow blond wood floors, lofty ceilings with clerestory windows, an open-sided gas fireplace with floating hearth, and thrilling expanses of paneless windows and glass sliders that peel back to an eave-shaded wrap around terrace that hovers over the hillside with toe-tingling city vistas.
At the time it the property was purchased, the kitchen, easily accessible to but separate from the living/dining area, had a spacious and sleek, and very expensive Euro-brand kitchen. An adjoining breakfast area with corner windows and glass sliders connects to the cantilevered deck that girdles two sides of the living/dining area. Just off the kitchen a flexi-purpose room with scintillating city view could be used as a third bedroom, home office, Pilates studio or t.v. watching lounge.
On the other side of the house a master bedroom has two, not-very-big closets and a through-the-pine-trees view of the city as well as a slightly obstructed city view across a semi-enclosed atrium and clear through the living/dining room. The attached master bathroom has a long, floating double vanity, a two-person soaking tub set into a glass-tiled platform, a separate stall shower partially enclosed by a transparent sheet of glass, and a separate cubby from the crapper.
At the time of the purchase, the second bedroom had almost an entire wall of windows shielded by plantation shutters, a privacy-ensuring but somewhat out of context decorative decision Your Mama would not have recommended or installed in a house with this sort of quintessentially mid-century modern architectural integrity.
The hillside lot is a decent-size quarter acre but usable outdoor space is—or was at the time of the purchase—limited to the wrap around deck on the backside of the house. However, should Mister Skarsgård—or whomever—desire more space in the future, marketing materials Your Mama dug up out of the murky morass of the interweb show a significant extension was designed with additional living space that juts out like a broken bone from the original structure, an ample roof deck and a lap-length swimming pool.
**Settle down, Angelenos, we're not hatin'. We love us some Los Feliz. Child, Your Mama and our oldest lesbo gal-pal The Chicken were hanging out at The Dresden back before sequined-slathered singers Marty and Elayne ever put on their first body-shaping undergarments. Even though it is desperately compact and, well, a little dingy, the Vintage on Vermont is a goddamn indie film oasis in blockbuster-driven L.A. and all of y'all who frequent the 'hood ought to buy books on a regular basis at Skylight Books, also on Vermont. Okay? We j'adore Los Feliz. It wasn't so long ago the still pretty low-profile 'hood was a little down on its heels but—let's get real, gurl—the area has gotten markedly upscale over the last decade in that liberally tattooed, Audi- or Prius-driving, Open Ceremony-shopping, I-only-look-like-I-haven't-showered-in-three-days sort of way.
listing photos: Michael Andrew McNamara Photography for Sotheby's International Realty