Hearst Mansion: “Nation’s Most Expensive Residential Listing-$165,000,000 and The Godfather Too!”

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Newspaper Magnate William Randolph Hearst’s Beverly Hills mansion was listed for sale on Monday for the record (American Residential property) price of $165,000,000. The mansion gained national fame as the digs for Hearst and Marion Davies. According to Jeff Hyland, author of “The Estates of Beverly Hills“, the compound sits on 6 1/2 acres and includes four houses, an apartment, a cottage for staff, 3 swimming pools, a disco, and a state of the art movie theater. Charles County Cafe has a fantastic picture of the grounds from ground level and an equally interesting article on this property!

According to the Los Angeles Times reporter Annette Haddad the seller is attorney Leonard M. Ross. Ultimate Homes Magazine publisher Rick Goodwin reports that “six U.S. residences have come on the market with nine-digit price tags in the past year.” The Hearst mansion price tag surpasses the asking price of $155,000,000 being sought by a group for their Montana based estate and the $135,000,000 price tag of an Aspen compound being sold by Saudi Arabian Prince Bandar bin Sultan.

And if this is not enough cache, the final coup de grace is the fact that this property was the setting for the movie mogal scene in the original Godfather movie. The beautiful grounds with reflecting pool, gardens, and swimming pools remain intact. The only thing missing is the horse’s head. . . as Michael Corleone said “Keep your friends close and your enemies closer.”

What Costs 3 Months Salary, Represents an Emotional Event, and Acts as a Warning to Other Males?

The wedding ring is a tried and true tradition which symbolizes the joining of two hearts into one love. It is a significant ritual and it represents one of the biggest days in your life. The wedding ring is the final piece and a perfect adornment to a relationship well worth a lifetime of commitment.

Although the above sentiments are shared by the happy couple, the male tends to have a few “other” thoughts on the significance of the wedding ring. Should the ring be an expensive diamond ring or should it be a more inexpensive purchase? According to suite101.com here are a few of the considerations that go into this important purchase:

  • For many women, a gorgeous ring will make them ecstatic. For the rest of her life, she can look down at her finger and remember how delighted she was to see that beautiful ring.
  • Many women will be very disappointed if they don’t get that beautiful ring. The marriage fairy tale is programmed into women’s brains from an early age, and part of the fairy tale is the diamond.
  • Romance aside, a diamond is a high quality and beautiful product that is difficult to damage. With proper care, the diamond ring will stay beautiful for a lifetime.
  • Quality diamond engagement rings can last for generations. The ring can become a family heirloom that your great grandson can use to propose to the girl of his dreams.
  • It’s tradition. For some people, tradition is very important, whether it’s the woman taking the husband’s name, the father walking the daughter down the aisle, or proposing with a diamond engagement ring. Failure to follow tradition may result in disapproval from family and friends.
  • The ring symbolizes an investment in your future together. Three months salary is a sacrifice that grooms are willing to make to symbolize a commitment they will not break.

And now the other side of the coin as described by suite101.com:

  • Three months salary is an awful lot of money. A newly married couple needs money things like a mortgage, car payments, student loans, and wedding expenses.
  • The De Beers Company, and diamond mining in general, has been plagued by scandal. Human rights groups have accused the industry of mining and purchasing diamonds under very questionable circumstances. If this concerns you, do some research into the diamond industry before you support it with three months of your salary.
  • Consumerism is out of control in the world today. The expectations of what we need to spend to be happy have been pumped up by marketers for years. Do you want the diamond industry and the bridal industry to tell you what you need to spend on your engagement ring?
  • Some brides prefer a stone that is unique and perhaps has personal significance. Couples are personalizing their weddings in all kinds of ways, from writing their own wedding vows to purchasing unique wedding favors, so why not buy a special ring? Other couples prefer to use an heirloom ring from their families.
  • Some couples reject the idea of an engagement ring altogether because they feel it promotes patriarchy and a sense of ownership of the woman.

All of the above points are valid and important to consider. Even more important, in my opinion, is for the man to “get a grip” on his main reason for buying that giant diamond ring-jealousy. Men’s insecurity never rings more true (pardon the pun) when they drop a 3 carrot giant diamond on their bride’s hand. To the woman it means: “God he must really love me!” To the man it does mean he loves his new wife. More significantly though it really says: “Don’t mess with this woman she is mine and she is married!” It is like marking territory-men understand this concept.

In my opinion, a couple should talk about what they want and expect from each other when it comes to wedding rings. They should agree on a price range, the 3 month formula is a jeweler’s evil plot, that fits their lifestyle and financial situation. Finally it is important that both people recognize their selfish (if selfishness exists in this situation) reasons for wanting “their way.”

Remember to listen to your partner, respect each other’s wishes, and have fun with this big decision!