Musk Pays Astronomical Sum for Mansion

Elon Musk / AP
• January 3, 2013 3:37 pm


Elon Musk—potential energy secretary nominee, major donor to President Barack Obama, and technology entrepreneur behind SpaceX, Tesla Motors, and PayPal—has purchased a $17 million mansion in Bel-Air according to the Los Angeles Times:

Built in 1990 and remodeled with entertaining in mind, the 20,248-square-foot manse features a two-story library, a theater, a library/study, a wine cellar, a gym, seven bedrooms and 10 bathrooms. The 1.7-acre property includes a tennis court, a swimming pool and an expansive motor court.

The purchase of the home comes after the finalization of Musk’s second marriage to British actress Talulah Riley in September. The Daily Mail reported the billionaire was ordered to pay his ex-wife a meager $4.2 million of his estimated $2 billion fortune.

The estate is nestled in the affluent Holmby Hills neighborhood, home to the Playboy Mansion; the Spelling Mansion, which was purchased by Formula 1 billionaire Bernie Ecclestone’s daughter Petra in 2011; and the Fleur de Lys, the estate built by David Saperstein his former wife Suzanne.

Musk inhabited the Bel-Air pad since 2009 before deciding to purchase the home from hedge fund manager Mitch Julis of Canyon Capital Advisors so he could add his own personal aesthetic, according to Forbes.

A source familiar with the sale told the Wall Street Journal that Julis agreed to sell the property to receive "capital-gains tax incentives" for the 2012 fiscal year.

The sale was a radical move by Julis to avoid the increase in capital gains tax to 20 percent, set to go in effect in 2013. Julis was not the only entrepreneur working against the clock to unload assets before the tax hike took effect Jan. 1.

The New York Times reported on Wednesday that Al Gore, the liberal eco-crusader who fiercely opposed the Bush tax cuts, was also trying to fast track the sale of his Current TV to the Arab news channel Al Jazeera. The sale of the cable channel missed the deadline and was not finalized until Jan. 3.