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In our biweekly breakdown of what’s happening with famous people’s homes: The Manhattan loft from Taylor Swift’s 1989 album art hits the market, and Kim Kardashian gives a peek at her over-the-top holiday decor.
Welcome to the post-Thanksgiving holiday season, during which we will be privy to all kinds of celebrity news about engagements, divorces, and the hawking of giftable items from their personal brands. But most important to us, of course, will be the unveiling of celebrity homes, which will no doubt be decorated for the holidays within an inch of their life. First up on that front are First Lady of the United States, Jill Biden, and First Lady of Calabasas, Kim Kardashian. Let’s get into their winter wonderlands, and our other celebrity real estate news.
"Some 14,975 feet of ribbon, over 350 candles, and more than 33,892 ornaments"—those are just a few of the stats People reported make up the White House’s extravagant 2023 holiday decoration display. The theme this year is "Magic, Wonder, and Joy," which, as the Bidens explained in a statement about the decor, is meant to reflect "how children experience" the season. The result is a deluge of bright colors, twinkling lights, flying reindeer, large candies hung from the ceiling, and a sugar cookie version of the book ’Twas the Night Before Christmas. It’s much cheerier than Melania Trump’s scary Christmas, which featured red trees that internet critics joked were more fitting for a "dystopian nightmare" theme and reminiscent of "hell on earth." Luckily and alternatively, the Bidens nailed "childlike wonder."
From her own heavily secured monochrome mansion on the other side of the country, Kim Kardashian gave a peek at her family’s holiday decor. In an Instagram Story set to the tune of Michael Bublé’s "It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas," Kardashian showed off the trees at the entrance to her $60 million Hidden Hills home, now decorated with lights. The short video was taken from a car as she pulled into her driveway and shows only the home’s (comparatively dark) exterior and the rows of trees, fully lighted from the trunks to their tips. When will we get a peek at the wonderland she’s hiding inside? As the Kardashian family tends to go all out with their holiday decor, and aren’t shy about sharing their work with the public, I suspect we’ll have those images by the next real estate roundup.
Before we get too far into the December holidays, we must take a moment to appreciate Jennifer Lopez’s Thanksgiving tablescape. The multi-hyphenate showed off her setup in a very casual, homey, relaxed branded Instagram video for her bottled cocktail, Delola L’Orange Spritz. Her table included many lovely details: a centerpiece of oranges, lemons, and persimmons that complemented the colors of Delola L’Orange Spritz; a bottle of Delola L’Orange Spritz at every place setting (hope you like it, guests!). But the feature getting the most attention was Lopez’s choice of dishware: her "favorite" Hermès Mosaique au 24 gold dinner plates and soup bowls. A single one of those plates costs $250; a single soup bowl, $230. Ahh. Brings you right back to your own Thanksgiving celebration, right?
You know, I can imagine Jennifer Lopez shopping for Hermès tableware, but shopping for a couch? It’s a difficult image to conjure. One would assume she has people to do that for her, employees who set out to sit-test every version on the market to find the one most suitable—comfortable, quietly luxurious—for the $60 million mansion she and Ben Affleck bought earlier this year after a nearly two-year house hunt. Alas, the paps happened to catch the couple couch shopping at a design store in Los Angeles. (Perhaps the same one Jeremy Allen White recently visited for his British GQ interview?) They cuddled up close on one available sofa, and even, as far as I can tell from the Page Six photos, shared a little kiss. I just hope they bought the floor model of the couch they were testing—imagine the disappointment of thinking you’re going to your forever home at the Beverly Hills estate of an A-list couple, only to be left behind… and at the holidays?
Also bereft is Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt’s former 1830s New Orleans home, now empty of its erstwhile famous residents and up for auction. The 7,703-square-foot mansion, located in the city’s French Quarter, will be yours for the buying beginning December 11, with a starting bid of $1 million. (That’s a steep discount from when it was listed for $5.35 million in September 2022.) Pitt and Jolie lived in the seven-bedroom, seven-bath home from 2006 until their divorce in 2016. According to Architectural Digest, the historic restored property still maintains its original Venetian-plastered walls, marble mantels, and crown moldings; and its carriage-style driveway is also lit by gas lamps, if that interests you. (It interests me.)
If that’s not your style, maybe you’d be more into the Montauk, New York, beach house of musician Rufus Wainwright, who joins a cavalcade of other celebrities itching to be our landlords. The singer-songwriter is renting out his midcentury-style two-bedroom, two-bath cottage at the somewhat staggering price of $25,000 per month. For that amount you get access to a large deck, an outdoor shower, and a separate studio containing one of Wainwright’s pianos. Cigarettes and chocolate milk, however, must be provided by the renter.
Now, to close things out with news related to Sophie Turner’s celebrity landlord: Taylor Swift. The apartment in which Swift had her 1989 polaroid photo shoot—located in the historic MacIntyre building in Manhattan’s Flatiron District—was listed for sale at $3.7 million, timed to coincide with the rerelease of 1989 (Taylor’s Version). Swifties can take a look at the property’s interiors—featuring its wooden flooring, oversize windows, and exposed wood walls—and piece together where the photos were taken for themselves.
Top photos courtesy (clockwise from top left): Marcelo Endelli/TAS23/Getty Images for TAS Rights Management; Gilbert Flores/Variety via Getty Images; Roy Rochlin/Getty Images