Forget dreaming about being invited to a Playboy mansion party… you can now officially make it your life goal to OWN the Playboy mansion!
That's right. The Playboy mansion is officially for sale. But as you might expect, it's not going to be cheap.
Built in 1927, the Playboy mansion sits on six acres in Holmby Hills, California (which is basically like an extremely exclusive tiny neighborhood within Beverly Hills). The 22,000 square foot house comes with 31 rooms, 7 of which are bedrooms, 8 are bathrooms, a zoo, and a grotto that desperately needs to be power-washed with bleach. The address, in case you want to google it, is 10236 Charing Cross Rd, Los Angeles, CA 90024.
Asking price? $200 million.
FYI – That's roughly $150 million more than it would likely fetch if it was just a random house in the same neighborhood.
Does it deserve that kind of premium? That's a very difficult question to answer. Believe it or not, the house itself is a total tear-down. I've actually been to the Playboy mansion and, in my opinion, most of the rooms feel like they haven't been updated in any way since the 1970s – because they likely have not been updated since the 1970s.
So will someone actually spend $200 million to buy the property, then another small fortune building a whole new house? Perhaps. There does seem to be an endless supply of Arab billionaires in the world who love to overspend on mansions around the world. Plus, for better or worse, there's only one Playboy mansion. Even if you tore the entire house down, no one else on the planet can say they OWN the Playboy mansion. Including, Hugh Hefner!
That's right. Hugh Hefner does not own the Playboy mansion. It is technically owned by Playboy Enterprises, which is technically owned by a private equity firm called Rizvi Traverse, which is technically owned by a billionaire named Suhail Rizvi. After a few decades of acquisitions, public listings and re-structurings, Hugh Hefner owns 35% of Playboy today.
Playboy Enterprises bought the mansion in 1971 for $1.1 million. That's the same as $6.45 million today, after adjusting for inflation. Hefner personally owns a house down the street, where Playmates and various other guests stay while they are visiting. He also once owned the house right next door to the mansion, but he gave it to his ex-wife, Kimberly, after they divorced in 1998.
Hugh actually pays rent to live at the mansion. According to SEC filings from when Playboy was a public company, Hugh paid $1.3 million in rent in 2002, $1.4 million in 2003 and $1.3 million in 2004. In those same years, Playboy chipped in $3.6 million, $2.3 million and $3 million in additional expenses to operate the place.
So what happens to Hugh if you buy the house? Well, that's the only catch. Whoever buys the house will be required to give Hugh a lifetime lease.
And for those who are interested, below are three photos from the first time I went to the Playboy mansion back in 2008. In the first photo, I've just discovered that I don't know where to put my hands while posing with lingerie-clad women. In the second photo, I've just discovered that the Playboy mansion wifi network is called "Playboy" and is not password protected. In the third photo, I've just discovered that I'm not good at talking to women OR enjoying alcohol responsibly at an open bar.