Hearst Estate: JFK and Jackie Kennedy’s Beverly Hills honeymoon home sells for $63.1m

The property had been on the market for more than a year

"One of America's finest mansions and estates" has sold for more than $63 million after spending more than a year on the market and cutting its price.

The owners of the Hearst Estate in Beverly Hills, which was once the honeymoon destination for JFK and Jackie Kennedy, originally tried to sell it for $195m in 2016, according to The Los Angeles Times. Since then, however, the price has been slashed numerous times as its owner, lawyer Leonard Ross, has faced bankruptcy and mountains of debt.

In June, the estate was listed for $69.9m, dropping from a listed price of $89.7m in April, and last month an offer of $47m was accepted, according to People, but thanks to some overbidders it eventually sold for $63.1m.

The winning bid came from German-American billionaire investor Nicolas Berggruen, according to Amalfi Estates property company.

The striking pink terracotta stucco house, which sits on 1.5 hectares and encompasses two guest houses and a pool house, is not only stunning, with its classic Italian and Spanish palatial styles, but also has a fascinating history.

It was built in 1926 by architect Gordon Kaufmann (the man who designed the Hoover Dam) for banking tycoon Milton Getz. Actress Marion Davies bought the property in 1946 for her partner, newspaper magnate William Randolph Hearst, and it remained the couple's Beverly Hills residence until Hearst's death in 1951. The couple's love affair is the inspiration behind Citizen Kane.

In 1953, the estate was the honeymoon destination for JFK and Jackie Kennedy, and it later served as Kennedy’s West Coast presidential election headquarters.

It has also featured in numerous films over the years, such as The Bodyguard – starring Kevin Costner and Whitney Houston – where viewers could see a swimming pool bordered by pillared Roman temple facades, in the style of the famous Neptune Pool at Hearst Castle.

The Godfather's notorious "horse head in a bed" scene was also filmed in one of the 18 bedrooms, and eagle-eyed Beyonce fans might recognise it from her album Black is King.

The main house, spread over 29,000 square feet, has hand-painted ceilings, a library, two screening rooms, an Art Deco nightclub, a billiards room and eight bedrooms.

Outside, there are patios and balconies galore, which look out over a tennis court, an Olympic-sized swimming pool, manicured gardens, fountains, terraces and vintage lamp posts.

Updated: September 16th 2021, 7:23 AM