Onetime home of Benny Goodman, the King of Swing…

A former home of legendary jazz musician and “King of Swing” bandleader Benny Goodman has sold in Pacific Palisades for $5.85 million.

Found along a tree-lined street in Palisades Riviera, the Spanish-style house retains its 1920s charm with beamed ceilings, original windows, wood-burning fireplaces and wrought iron details.

The roughly 5,000-square-foot house opens to a rotunda entry with a saltillo tile floors and a sweeping staircase embellished with decorative tile risers. Living, dining and family rooms, an updated kitchen and a study/office are among the common spaces.

Five bedrooms and 5.5 bathrooms include a master suite with a walk-in closet and heated bathroom floors. A detached guest house is set up as a music/recording studio.

Grounds of about a third of an acre contain multiple patios, a built-in barbecue and a swimming pool and spa. Privacy hedges, formal landscaping and front and back lawns complete the setting.

The property came to market in summer for $6.195 million and was more recently listed at $5.995 million. It previously sold a decade ago for $4.65 million, records show.

Anthony Marguleas of Amalfi Estates was the listing agent. Marco Rufo of Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices repped the buyer.

Goodman, who died in 1986 at 77, was a clarinetist and dance band leader in the 1930s. His noted hits include “Sing Sing Sing,” “Taking a Chance on Love” and “Let’s Dance.”

Article by Neil J Leitereg in

A match made in heaven: What’s trending in homes


Design trends we're in love with

Our agents are committed to finding a home for their buyers that makes their heart skip a beat, a home that they immediately can picture themselves spending the rest of their lives in. We asked Marco Rufo, an agent with our Pacific Palisades office, for his input on what he thinks it takes for a home to make a buyer fall in love.

The way to the heart starts with the kitchen

“If a buyer is looking for a traditional style home, they are almost always looking for stainless steel appliances in the kitchen, and I get a lot of requests about the Viking brand. On the other hand, modern and contemporary-style homes almost usually have all black, modern appliances. In these homes, I see a lot of Wolf appliances.”

Setting the mood

Though appliances are important, Marco tells us that countertops are really what set the mood. Granite is and has been on the list of must-haves for many homebuyers, but engineered-stone products primarily made of quartz are beginning to replace granite in high-end homes.

Looking for…

If homebuyers had a dating profile, their ideal kitchen would have:

  • 48-inch stove
  • 48-inch refrigerator
  • Two dishwashers
  • Two sinks
  • Pot filler
  • Espresso maker
  • Microwaves

Upgrades that will make you fall in love

For the ladies: A large center island in the kitchen.

For the fellas: Full audio and lighting control system in the house.

Whether you are selling, buying, or are currently a homeowner, these are two features that homeowners these days are searching for.

Long-term commitments

“There are some features that just won’t go out of style–and for good reason. If you are a homeowner, I suggest making sure that your home has several, if not all of these features.”

  • Eat-in kitchen
  • Stainless steel appliances
  • En-suite master bath
  • Hardwood floors
  • Large master bedroom
  • Outdoor pool

In love with the layout

“Open floor plans are very popular right now. We see it specifically in the kitchen and great room, even opening up the eat-in breakfast area. This allows for more socializing, and is great for hosting dinner parties or having family over.”

Marco also says that two-story homes are more desirable, due to the amount of bedrooms they can have. “Large families gravitate to two-story homes because it’s double the space. Additionally, when you live in Southern California, you are bound to have friends and family wanting to come stay with you, so having that extra level and extra rooms can be a lifesaver.”

A perfect match in Southern California

Backyards are a must in Southern California, but Marco advises to make sure that a few things always pair up:

  • Homes with a pool are more desirable if they also have a spa.
  • When considering your outdoor landscaping, real grass is still ideal, however turf is being used more often. Backyards with lush landscaping and accent lights are also sure to catch any buyer’s eye.
  • An outdoor barbecue station is always a good idea, but make sure that you also have a large countertop and space for stools.

Rufo%2C Marco_2011-08-02

Meet Marco Rufo

Office: Pacific Palisades

Ideal home features: A home with a grand entrance and open floor plan with an East Coast traditional style.

Why Marco loves working in real estate with Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices California Properties: He loves the agent and broker network, the accessibility, and the brand and image that the company have.


Posted on on February 10th


6 Reasons You Should Never Buy or Sell a Home Without an Agent

It’s a slow Sunday morning. You’ve just brewed your Nespresso and popped open your laptop to check out the latest home listings before you hit the road for a day of open houses.

You’re DIYing this real estate thing, and you think you’re doing pretty well—after all, any info you might need is at your fingertips online, right? That and your own sterling judgment.

Oh, dear home buyer (or seller!)—we know you can do it on your own. But you really, really shouldn’t. This is likely the biggest financial decision of your entire life, and you need a Realtor® if you want to do it right. Here’s why.

1. They have loads of expertise

Want to check the MLS for a 4B/2B with an EIK and a W/D? Real estate has its own language, full of acronyms and semi-arcane jargon, and your Realtor is trained to speak that language fluently.

Plus, buying or selling a home usually requires dozens of forms, reports, disclosures, and other technical documents. Realtors have the expertise to help you prepare a killer deal—while avoiding delays or costly mistakes that can seriously mess you up.

2. They have turbocharged searching power

The Internet is awesome. You can find almost anything—anything! And with online real estate listing sites such as yours truly, you can find up-to-date home listings on your own, any time you want. But guess what? Realtors have access to even more listings. Sometimes properties are available but not actively advertised. A Realtor can help you find those hidden gems.

Plus, a good local Realtor is going to know the search area way better than you ever could. Have your eye on a particular neighborhood, but it’s just out of your price range? Your Realtor is equipped to know the ins and outs of every neighborhood, so she can direct you toward a home in your price range that you may have overlooked.

3. They have bullish negotiating chops

Any time you buy or sell a home, you’re going to encounter negotiations—and as today’s housing market heats up, those negotiations are more likely than ever to get a little heated.

You can expect lots of competition, cutthroat tactics, all-cash offers, and bidding wars. Don’t you want a savvy and professional negotiator on your side to seal the best deal for you?

And it’s not just about how much money you end up spending or netting. A Realtor will help draw up a purchase agreement that allows enough time for inspections, contingencies, and anything else that’s crucial to your particular needs.

4. They’re connected to everyone

Realtors might not know everything, but they make it their mission to know just about everyone who can possibly help in the process of buying or selling a home. Mortgage brokers, real estate attorneys, home inspectors, home stagers, interior designers—the list goes on—and they’re all in your Realtor’s network. Use them.

5. They adhere to a strict code of ethics

Not every real estate agent is a Realtor, who is a licensed real estate salesperson who belongs to the National Association of Realtors®, the largest trade group in the country.

What difference does it make? Realtors are held to a higher ethical standard than licensed agents and must adhere to a Code of Ethics.

6. They’re your sage parent/data analyst/therapist—all rolled into one

The thing about Realtors: They wear a lot of different hats. Sure, they’re salespeople, but they actually do a whole heck of a lot to earn their commission. They’re constantly driving around, checking out listings for you. They spend their own money on marketing your home (if you’re selling). They’re researching comps to make sure you’re getting the best deal.

And, of course, they’re working for you at nearly all hours of the day and night—whether you need more info on a home or just someone to talk to in order to feel at ease with the offer you just put in. This is the biggest financial (and possibly emotional) decision of your life, and guiding you through it isn’t a responsibility Realtors take lightly.


Article by Rachel Stults in on 02/04/16

Light Bridge to break ground in Los Angeles

Work starts this week on a huge bridge made up of 10 pairs of arches, designed by architect Michael Maltzan to replace the iconic Art-Deco Sixth Street Viaduct in Los Angeles (+ slideshow).

Ribbon of Light bridge by Michael Maltzan

Called the Ribbon of Light, the 3,500-foot-long (approximately 1,100 metres) bridge will span the Los Angeles River and several busy roads, providing pedestrian, bicycle and vehicular access to downtown LA from the Boyle Heights neighbourhood.

Demolition will begin on the existing bridge on 5 February, necessitating a 40-hour closure of the 101 Freeway.

Ribbon of Light bridge by Michael Maltzan

The new elevated structure will feature a series of splayed arched trusses that will be illuminated at night. It will connect to a network of parks being developed alongside and underneath it.

Five staircases will allow pedestrians access at different points along the span, while a ramp at either end will provide accessibility for cyclists.

Ribbon of Light bridge by Michael Maltzan

“The new Los Angeles Sixth Street Viaduct is a transformative infrastructure project for the city of Los Angeles,” said LA-based Michael Maltzan Architecture, describing it as “more than a simple replacement thoroughfare”.


“The project foresees a multimodal future for the city, one that accommodates cars, incorporates significant new bicycle connections, and also increases connectivity for pedestrians to access the viaduct, not only at its endpoints, but along the entirety of the viaduct, linking the bridge, the Los Angeles River, and future urban landscapes in a more meaningful relationship,” it said.

Ribbon of Light bridge by Michael Maltzan

The existing Sixth Street Viaduct dates back to 1932 and has been featured in numerous films, particularly those revealing the city’s underside, including Drive, The Dark Knight Rises, and To Live and Die in LA.

Ribbon of Light bridge by Michael Maltzan

Though the old Art-Deco bridge is a landmark, it has badly deteriorated due to a chemical reaction known as Alkali Scilica Reaction, which is eroding its concrete piers. It also fails to meet current seismic standards.

Ribbon of Light bridge by Michael Maltzan

Maltzan’s firm designed the replacement bridge with architecture and engineering firm HNTB and engineering company Skanska.

“These pairs of repeated concrete arches and cable-supported roadway deck are simultaneously elegant and efficient,” Michael Maltzan Architecture said.

Ribbon of Light bridge by Michael Maltzan
A model of Michael Maltzan’s replacement for the iconic Art-Deco Sixth Street Viaduct in Los Angeles

“The design approach unifies and optimises the architecture of the viaduct through repetition, creating a unique configuration through the repeated use of arches, roadway and pier forms: an iconic structure,” the firm added.

The LA River is currently a concrete channel, but is in the process of being redesigned with more natural edges as a park and recreation area, with Frank Gehry currently attached to the design team.

Ribbon of Light bridge by Michael Maltzan
The model shows the splayed arched trusses and the space underneath them, which will be filled by a network of parks

The Ribbon of Light is the latest in a string of major building projects in LA, helping to turn the city into a hotbed for design. Other examples include The Broad by Diller Scofidio + Renfro and the renovated Petersen Automotive Museum.

“The unwieldiness, the heterogeneity, the complexity here – all those things you might associate with dystopic urbanisms have made things like invention very possible. They’ve created a very open context,” Maltzan told Dezeen.

Los Angeles to build most expensive stadium complex of the world

(CNN)Los Angeles will welcome the return of NFL football with the construction of a new 80,000-seat stadium complex and “NFL Disney World,” expected to become the world’s most expensive sports arena.The 3.1 million-square-foot multipurpose venue -- located at the site of the closed Hollywood Park Race Track -- will be the league's largest (in square feet).

The 300-acre development in Inglewood, a few miles from downtown Los Angeles, will provide a new home for the NFL’s Rams franchise, whose return to their former home city was approved by league officials last Tuesday. The development has an estimated cost of $2.6 billion — more than $1 billion more than New Jersey’s MetLife Stadium, currently the league’s most costly venue.

The capacity of the new stadium could exceed 100,000 for special events, say developers. Inglewood Mayor James Butts has already announced ambitions to host the Super Bowl at the arena, which developers say will be the “cornerstone” of a year-round sports, music, and entertainment events district.

An unnamed “owner” is reported in the Los Angeles Times comparing their ambitions for the development to Florida’s Disney World theme park. The development’s footprint is about twice the size of the original Disneyland Resort in Anaheim, California, and will also host a 6,000-seat performance venue, more than 1.5 million square feet of retail and office space, 2,500 homes, a 300-room hotel, and 25 acres of parks.

The Rams, who played in the Los Angeles area for almost 50 years, will give the city its first NFL team since 1995 — the year the Rams left for St. Louis, and the Raiders departed for Oakland.

Rams owner and property developer Stan Kroenke, who has an estimated personal net worth of $7.4 billion, is credited with spearheading the return of NFL football to the country’s second largest city.

The new stadium is expected to be complete in time for the 2019 NFL season, with the team playing at their former home at the L.A. Memorial Coliseum, until then. The team’s owners have begun courting the San Deigo Chargers and Oakland Raiders to join them at the new venue, on the site of the former Hollywood Park horse racing track.

The stadium

The 3.1 million-square-foot multipurpose venue will be the league’s largest (in square feet.)

International architecture giant HKS have been contracted to design the venue and have announced that it will center on a 19-acre transparent canopy, which will cover the entire stadium and parts of the surrounding development.

The canopy will be made from the same transparent ETFE plastic that coats Bayern Munich’s stadium, the Allianz Arena, and the Beijing National Aquatics Center.

Inside the planned arena

Inside the planned arena

Munich’s stadium changes color, from red to white to blue, according to which team — Bayern, second division side TSV 1860 München, or the German national side — is playing at the stadium that day. The architects have not yet said if similar color indication would occur if two or more teams host matches at the new stadium in Inglewood.

The Rams are urging the Chargers, currently based 200 km south of L.A. in San Diego, to join them at the stadium, and fund a portion of the massive costs, with the Oakland Raiders considered a fallback option.

Kroenke has publicly estimated the cost at $1.86 billion, but the Los Angeles Times quotes unnamed “(NFL) officials and owners” who say the true cost could reach $2.66 billion. The New York Times and others have put the value at nearly $3 billion.

The NFL already claims the world’s most expensive stadium. That title belongs to the MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey, home to New York teams the Giants and Jets, which opened in 2010 at a cost of $1.6 billion. The Dallas Cowboys and San Francisco 49ers are also among a minute group of teams worldwide to play in stadiums costing more than $1 billion.

Outside the U.S., stadiums with budgets exceeding $1 billion dollars are rare. London’s home of soccer, Wembley Stadium, crossed the mark in 2007. Tokyo abandoned plans for a $2 billion Zaha Hadid-designed stadium last July amid rising costs, with a cheaper design now underway.


Article by By Matthew Ponsford,