If Lady Gaga was queen of the house-hunting rumor mill this year, Fraiser's Kelsey Grammer was its king. The recently separated—and now engaged—TV star was spotted all over Manhattan, including 200 Eleventh Ave., before heading just a little further downtown to Jean Nouvel's Vision Machine. He dropped $6.5M to pick up a glassy four-bedroom designed by the Dr. Evil doppelgänger. (Jump for the photo.)
Fraiser's not the only star hunting for starchitecture, and, in general, this has been banner year for celebs and their favorite starchitects. Buying, selling, renting, and renovating were all in the mix, and the number of famous people content only with the products of other famous people swelled. For your convenience, we've rounded up the 2010 antics of seven starry-eyed, real-estate-obsessed celebs.
? As promised, Grammer's recent purchase at Nouvel's Vision Machine.
? If 200 Eleventh wasn't quite Grammer's thing, Nicole Kidman scooped up a penthouse in the Annebelle Selldorf-designed tower of gimmicks. A car elevator? Really? At least Kidman and country music star husband Keith Urban managed to knock $2.5M off the asking price. They paid $10M, a cost that could be defrayed if the actress finds a renter for her 12th-floor three-bedroom at Richard Meier's 176 Perry Street, currently asking $45K a month. This girl really loves her starchitects.
? Celebrity crooner-turned-actor Justin Timberlake has also leveraged his fame into some pretty hefty discounts. In October, J.T. paid $6.57M for a penthouse at Soho Mews, a Charles Gwathmey-designed product, previously listed at $7.65M. He might have a doorman, but as one hawk-eyed Curbed commenter noted, there's a "great view of JT's tub from high terrace at the Sheraton Tribeca across canal." Expect to see a lot of telephoto lenses swinging by the Sheraton in 2011.
? Not ready to buy but not looking to be left out is Meg Ryan, who copped a three-bedroom rental at Jean Nouvel's 40 Mercer for around $25K a month. We suspect the serial renovator might have learned to love something move-in ready, so long as it's got the proper pedigree.
? On the West Coast, the old-school SoCal greats see plenty of action from Hollywood heavyweights. Diane Keaton, who frequently colludes with the Los Angeles Conservancy, also has a habit of flipping premier properties. In '07, she splashed out $9.1M for Lloyd Wright's Alfred Newman Estate. (Before you ask, no, that's not Frank, it's his son.) Three years later, Keaton jacked the price up to $13.5M—and after a brief stint asking $8.5M. Confounding, indeed!
? L.A.-area celebs and the architecture of late great John Lautner get along splendidly. In the spring, musician Moby bought the Hollywood Hills castle known as "Wolf's Lair" for $3.9M. Besides the 1920s main residence, there's a Lautner-designed guest house on the property that looks relatively unmolested. Moby reports he'll restore to its midcentury glory.
? Reformed Roger Ebert nemesis Vincent Gallo, the auteur behind the '80s indie hit Buffalo '66 and the more recent quasi-porn Brown Bunny, also has a taste for Lautner. He formerly resided in the Wolff House in West Hollywood, and sold it it '08 for $5.55M. No, he's not exactly A-list, and he hasn't lived there for years, but just check this place out. It's stunning—we couldn't help ourselves!
· Kelsey Grammer's Apartment Hunt Ends at the Vision Machine [Curbed NY]
· Nicole Kidman Moving to West Chelsea Starchitecture District [Curbed NY]
· Nicole Kidman Wants $45,000/Month for 176 Perry Pad [Curbed NY]
· Justin Timberlake Seals the Deal on Soho Penthouse [Curbed NY]
· Justin Timberlake Ditching Tribeca for Soho Penthouse! [Curbed NY]
· Sleepless in Soho: Meg Ryan Rents at Nouvel's 40 Mercer [Curbed NY]
· Lloyd Wright's Alfred Newman Estate in the Pacific Palisades [Curbed LA]
· Keaton Relists Her Lloyd Wright-Designed Newman Estate [Curbed LA]
· Tour of Wolf's Lair's Lautner Guest House, A Future Studio [Curbed LA]
· Gallo Regrets Roger Ebert Curse [ContactMusic.com]
· Lautner's Wolff House Comes Round Again [Curbed LA]