$25 million for a beach house on Santa Monica’s Gold Coast

Kirk Lazurus and 966 Palisades Beach Rd (Molori, iStock, Illustration by Kevin Cifuentes for The Real Deal)

Palisades Beach Road, in the Gold Coast enclave of Santa Monica, has served as a waterfront address for celebrities and business stars for more than a century. Newspaper baron William Randolph Hearst slept with his mistress Marion Davies on this beach in the early 20th century. Grace Kelly, Peter Lawford, brother-in-law of Cary Grant chairman John F. Kennedy, partied here in the 1950s and 1960s. More recently, Owen Van Natta, a former Facebook chief operating officer, and David Bonderman , founding partner of TPG Capital, have purchased homes on this thoroughfare, which is a stretch of the Pacific Coast Highway that runs from the Santa Monica Pier to the California Incline, the distinctive inclined road that connects Ocean Avenue to Pacific Coast Highway.

966 Palisades Beach Rd (Molori)
966 Palisades Beach Rd (Molori)

While Palisades Beach Road continues to be a popular address, it takes effort to renovate the older homes on this stretch of road, many of which were built in the 1920s. To get the go-ahead for a full renovation of 966 Palisades Beach Rd, Kirk Lazurus, developer and founder of Molori, a designer of homes and resorts, had to submit plans in order to get approval from the California Coastal Commission. He bought the house for $3.95 million in 2010. Lazarus’ design resume includes the Molori Safari Lodge in South Africa. He also designed 1525 San Vicente Blvd in Santa Monica, a home currently listed at $69 million and one of the most expensive homes on the Los Angeles market.

Lazurus has extensively renovated 966 Palisades Beach Rd., a five-bedroom, seven-bathroom home that measures approximately 6,300 square feet, the developer said. The four-level beachfront home is set to go on sale June 24 for an asking price of $25 million, or about $3,968 per square foot. Prominent luxury agent Joyce Rey, affiliated with Coldwell Banker Global Luxury, and Veronica Klein of Compass will serve as listing agents. 966 Palisades Beach Road will also be available for rent, Lazarus said.

966 Palisades Beach Rd (Molori)
966 Palisades Beach Rd (Molori)

Lazurus owns two adjacent homes, 972 Palisades Beach Rd. and 924 Palisades Beach Road. But 966 Palisades Beach Road Rd. has its own style. “It’s a New York loft meets a beach house in Saint-Tropez,” he said. Architectural details include brick walls, floors constructed from reclaimed wood from French chateaux, and custom doors and windows.

Eco-friendly, renewable geothermal heating and cooling are among the conveniences of the home, and of course luxury was crucial to this home’s renovation, Lazurus said. “Each suite is designed like a hotel room,” he said.

Rooms have fully stocked refrigerators and are connected to steam showers. A few master bedrooms have 120-inch screen monitors, which come down from the bedroom ceilings.

The lower level of the house empties out to a sandy beach and has a fitness studio with pilates equipment, free weights, and can be used for yoga. The backyard of the house has an infinity pool and an outdoor kitchen. Also on the lower floor is a cinema, an aquarium and a hammam.

Recent sales in the neighborhood include 1020 Palisades Beach Rd., a seven-bed, six-bathroom, 6,485-square-foot home that sold for $10.6 million, or $1,634 per square foot in November 2021. If a buyer for 966 Palisades Beach Rd has questions for Lazurus about remodeling, the developer will be easy to find. Lazarus said he would move into 972 Palisades Beach Rd.

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