Popular actress Sela Ward and her venture capitalist husband, Howard Sherman, are carrying out a common ritual for couples with grown children; they are looking to pull up roots and head to New York, now that they are empty nesters. The stunning modern oasis that they have listed for $40 million, however, is anything but common.
Built in 1940, the house was designed by eminent architect Samuel Marx, but then Ward and Sherman purchased the property in 2003 and redeveloped it in the style of a French country estate, with a bamboo grove, vegetable garden, vineyard and wine cellar with tasting room. Ward and Sherman found a way to incorporate breathtaking art and design in virtually every aspect of the home.
Ward, who is a painter and has a studio on the grounds of the seven-bedroom, 13-bathroom house, infused all of the rooms with colors and textures that make the estate abound with elegance, vibrancy and comfort. The front is a wide-open, welcoming court with a three-car garage. When visitors look up, they can catch a glimpse of the three-edged infinity swimming pool and hot tub with access to a corridor that leads to a breathtaking entertainment pavilion with a parlor, full kitchen, fireplace and full dining room table. Yes, the property has an indoor theater with lush, plush seating, but it's the – wait for it – amphitheater with a 100-seat capacity that is the real show stopper!
Inside, the house has several stylishly laid out sitting areas that move traffic easily through an open floor plan. The same openness applies to the kitchen, which is flooded with light from an atrium ceiling – a novel way to literally let the sun shine in.
Apparently, Ward and Sherman bought the property for $3.8 million in 2003 and demolished it almost completely to create the outstanding property that it is now. If the couple gets their desired asking price for the estate, it will amount to a tidy profit.