Prior to today, the most expensive single-family home ever purchased in US history was a 7-acre Malibu estate that was acquired by venture capitalist Marc Andreeseen in October 2021 for $177 million.
There is a small caveat in the previous sentence. Note that I specifically said “most expensive single-family home.” If you look at our running list of the most expensive homes in US history, you’ll see that, technically, the overall “home” record belongs to hedge fund billionaire Ken Griffin. Back in January 2019 Ken paid $238 million to acquire the top four floors of a New York City building located at 220 Central Park South.
However, I’m a purist when it comes to tracking “most expensive home” records. In my view, Ken’s multi-unit purchase arguably shouldn’t count. Ken’s apartments, which were still under construction at the time of his purchase, was technically four units sold at once. In my heart, I have considered Marc Andreessen to be the record holder. Until today.
As first reported by TMZ Jay-Z and Beyonce just smashed the record. The multi-billionaire power couple just paid $200 million for a sprawling, 8-acre Malibu estate that features a 30,000 square foot spaceship-like concrete mansion.
Here it is pictured from Bing maps:
$400 Million Neighborhood
Want to know something totally insane? Marc Andreessen’s former record holding mansion is literally RIGHT NEXT DOOR.
In the photo above, Beyonce and Jay-Z’s new Malibu mansion is the flat concrete behemoth with the massive ocean-facing lawn. The rectangular estate immediately to the right is the property Marc Andreessen paid $177 million for in October 2019.
In other words, from the point of view of the LA County property tax collector, the two homes pictured above represent $377 million worth of book value real estate. In California, property owners pay a little over 1% of their purchase price in property taxes every year (depending on local city taxes). So between these estates alone, California will receive $4 million per year from now on.
You can catch a couple of glimpses of Jay-Z and Beyonce’s new mansion in the video embedded below which was made a couple years ago to help sell a nearby house.
The drone flies right over the new Beyonce/Jay-Z residence several times. As you watch this video pay close attention at the 42 second mark as the drone flies towards the ocean, and then at the 1:12 mark:
Here is Jay-Z and Beyonce’s home as viewed from the drone out on the ocean:
Soap Opera Fortune
Jay-Z and Beyonce’s new mansion has an interesting backstory. According to my property record search, the spaceship was previously owned and constructed by an entity called “Bill Bell Productions, Inc.”
Anyone with a passing familiarity with the entertainment industry or Malibu real estate history will connect that entity William J. Bell. Who is William J. Bell and how did he earn enough money to buy what might be the most incredible piece of land in all of Malibu? Two words: Soap Operas.
William and his wife Lee Phillip Bell were the husband and wife creative forces who essentially invented the soap opera. Together, the Bells created “Another World” (which aired nearly 9,000 episodes between 1964 and 1999), “The Young and the Restless (which has aired over 12,000 episodes since premiering in 1973) and “The Bold and the Beautiful” (which has aired over 8,000 episodes since premiering in 1987).
William died in 2005 at the age of 78. Lee Phillip died in February 2020 at the age of 91. They were survived by three children, a daughter named Lauralee who is an actress most famous for starring as Cricket on “The Young and the Restless” since 1983; and two sons, William Jr. and Bradley. Bradley is the executive producer and head writer of “The Bold and the Beautiful” and William Jr. is the President of the family-operated Bell-Phillip Television Productions.
The family has owned the parcels that became Jay-Z and Beyonce’s estate for a long time. William Jr. oversaw the construction of the current 30,000 square foot mansion with the help of world-renowned architect Tadao Ando. At one point William Jr. listed the property off-market for a reported $295 million. So I guess you could argue that Jay-Z and Beyonce got a bargain!