Weekly Top Ten Real Estate Hot List Tue: 12-26-2012
Larry Hagman, much beloved for his role of United States astronaut in I Dream of Jeannie and later as the irreverent oil tycoon and womanizer, J. R. Ewing in Dallas, grew up in the stage and movie set environment. His mother was Mary Martin of Peter Pan and South Pacific fame, which accounted for his relaxed approach to his own life and career. At least his outlook remained casual until he was diagnosed with cirrhosis of the liver in 1995. At that point, Larry’s hard drinking and recreational drug use changed forever.
Hagman was the fortunate recipient of a liver transplant a month after he was diagnosed. The timeliness of the transplant has been the source of much controversy by those who insist that he received preferential treatment over hundreds of others on the waiting list due to having the money to push it forward. This close brush with death turned Hagman into a health conscious, ecology concerned man who turned his attention to the house that he and his Swedish born wife, Maj built in Ojai, California. They named it “Heaven”, since they could think of no other place they’d rather live. This is where Larry and his wife of 54 years, Maj, lived until 2010 when Maj was institutionalized for advanced Alzheimer's. This September, Larry Hagman died at the age of 81 from complications of throat cancer.
Over time, Heaven became a study in ecological conservation, provided food and was structured to meet any future medical or environmental emergencies. When Larry realized that his annual electric bill came to $37,000, he installed a state-of-the-art German solar system for $750,000, large enough to pump well water into the orchards, gardens and the 200,000 gallons needed for three pools, a spa and other water features. The bonus came when after a year of solar operation he produced $47,000 of electric to sell back to the power company, plus a $10,000 refund from the electric company.
Hagman went on to negotiate with the local county to allow a helipad on the property in exchange for permitting firefighters to fill their helicopter tanks from his pools to fight wildfires. The system worked well in 1996 when the area was surrounded by 30-foot flames.
On 42 acres, this 23,000 square foot Tuscan-style house is built in several levels. Two electronically monitored gates are at the entry and halfway up the drive to the house. There are 9 bedrooms, 9 bathrooms, five fireplaces, separate mother-in-law quarters and separate living quarters for a staff of two gardeners and two housekeepers. Living room ceilings are 28 feet and there is an outdoor suspended sleep tower 36 feet above the ground. Thirty-two acres are planted in olive, grapefruit, lime, orange and avocado trees in addition to extensive landscaping and over 400 rose bushes. Vegetables and chickens have also been raised on the property. There are two outdoor pools, one indoors, a spa and manmade babbling creek with views of ocean and mountains in all directions.
Larry Hagman’s Heaven, the largest solarized home in the country. Previously listed in 2009 for $11 million, now priced at $6.495 million.