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Merv Griffin's Rehabbed Carmel Valley Ranch Returns for $6M

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The former Carmel Valley estate of the late entertainer and media mogul Merv Griffin is back on the market. The radio and big band singer-turned-talk show host—you might recognize the set of his eponymous show from an unforgettable Seinfeld episode—added the 57 acres to his hefty property portfolio in the 1970s. The hilltop estate consists of what the listing calls a "collection of private cottages and guest suites surrounded by lawns and entertainment areas," along with vineyards and an accompanying ranch. The asking price for the Jeopardy! and Wheel of Fortune creator's former summer retreat is $5.975M.

That's down from the $6.2M it was shopped around for in 2007, shortly before Griffin's death, when the Real Estalker reported he was putting it on the market because he didn't use it enough. This time around, Hawkridge has been "lovingly restored and updated by Merv's friend and former CEO of the Griffin Group into an extraordinary family compound and private retreat." The buildings on offer include a 2,180-square-foot main house with a combined living-dining room and kitchen (but no bedrooms), a two-bedroom (converted?) pool house, a four-bedroom guest building, a one-bedroom guest cottage, and the two-bedroom cottage that Griffin stayed in. With the caretaker's unit and recently added "entertainment center" thrown in, there's a total "livable area" of 9,378 square feet, which doesn't include a garage with an attached area for wine storage, and a combined barn and workshop.

The hammy Old Hollywood name-dropping of the listing is a real treat. Here are a few highlights, presented without comment:

"Cary Grant, with a mystified expression, says to Merv Griffin during a weekend stay at Hawkridge: 'Why would you ever leave this place!'" "Merv's reply to Cary Grant: 'Cary, I promise you, the ranch will be here when we get back.'"

"A spectacular redwood deck surrounding a huge ancient oak tree, believed to be 800 years old, has hosted the likes of Clint Eastwood, Gene Hackman, Carl Reiner as well as Fortune 500 CEOs and Wall Street financiers. Eastwood recalled a dinner at the ranch: 'He had Cary Grant. Lucille Ball, James Stewart, everybody.' Griffin's famed fight with Donald Trump in 1988 was plotted around the deck's table for twelve."

"Seven gracious suites, once visited by Ethel Kennedy and a host of Merv's celebrity pals, offer ample room for family and friends."

"Sunny Valley days spent lounging and dining beside the 82 degree solar-heated pool, once enjoyed by Eva Gabor and Lucille Ball."

Plus, in neighboring "Garland Ranch, one can "take a walk along Eva Gabor's expansive rose gardens," where she "wandered among them each morning inhaling their fragrance." In said ranch, "fresh eggs are gathered daily from the chicken coop" and "horses can roam in the numerous fenced pastures or join company with the nine gentle and curious alpacas and six miniature sheep." There are also "two acres of terraced south-facing vineyards produce 'AlpacaRidge' Sauvignon Blanc and 'HawkRidge' Pinot Noir labels, both of which are licensed for commercial sale."

Back in 2013, Griffin's Bel Air estate was flipped and eventually sold off this year for $5,996,500. His La Quinta horse ranch was listed for $9.5M in 2012, and sold for $7M in June of last year. He is also said to have once lived in the Mt. Olympus supervillain lair built for Alex Trebek, which Megan Ellison now owns. His mansion in Ireland was up for rent last fall for $36K a week.


· 54 Camino De Travesia [David Lyng]
· From Jagger to Sinatra, Mapping 32 Rentable Name-Droppers [Curbed National]
· Merv Griffin Estate in Bel Air Flipped Back After Just 3 Months [Curbed LA]