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Bel Air: One of Tinseltown’s Most Exclusive Enclaves

Unparalleled beauty coupled with an idyllic setting, Bel Air is simply spectacular. Comprised of dramatic hillsides, world-class estates, homes with history, and the most iconic main entry in Los Angeles, the neighborhood’s legacy speaks for itself. One-third of the city’s Platinum Triangle, formed with Beverly Hills and Holmby Hills -Bel Air, Los Angeles, is the pinnacle of luxury estates. Whether you are looking to buy or sell one of the neighborhood’s historic homes or modern monuments, it is essential to understand what makes Bel Air unique.

Founded in 1922 by one of California’s richest oil men turned real estate developer Alphonzo Bell purchased the land and predicted Bel Air would be “the crowning achievement of suburban development.” North of Sunset Boulevard, which did not exist until 1926, Bell transformed the hillside view community into a haven for affluent residents. With the invention of automobiles, the wealthy sought stunning panoramas overlooking the city and moved north of The Flats into Bell’s new development.

“The One”, Bel Air. Stuart Vetterick Represented Buyer.

Vast, empty Santa Monica Mountain plots quickly became a global focus and a hub for luxury. While living in Bel Air is consistently a goal for those seeking an extravagant lifestyle, the home styles have been anything but consistent. The neighborhood went through periods of growth, designed around specific home builds. Original estates became surrounded by smaller homes. Then, after WWII, residents wanted ranch-style properties, which would now be known as Mid-Century Moderns. This transformation painted two very different pictures of the neighborhood. The dream Bell had envisioned still stood full of exceptional tract homes designed to massive scale and standard, while homes at lower elevations were designed to take advantage of their unique positioning on the hillsides. Today, the neighborhood has three sections: East Gate Bel Air, West Gate Bel Air, and Upper Bel Air.

None of the entrances to Bel Air are more noteworthy than the East Gate at Beverly Glen and the West Gate at Bellagio Road. Known as Old Bel Air, the East Gate is the site of the first residential properties in the neighborhood. Graced with the distinguished roads of Saint Pierre, Bel Air, Bellagio, Copa De Oro, and Nimes, the venerable ambiance can be felt at every address. Combining East Gate with its bordering neighbor to the east, Holmby Hills, the two create the world’s finest collection of luxury properties.

Located in East Gate Bel Air are estates that command their positions and don curated luxury. While mansions are between 5,000 and 8,000 square feet, estates in Bel Air exceed 15,000, some in excess of 100,000 square feet. In 2020, Jeff Hyland successfully represented and sold one of the original allotments of Bel Air on Nimes Road. The estate was situated on 10.39 acres in the heart of the neighborhood and was an ideal representation of the legacy found in Old Bel Air.

“The One”, Bel Air. Stuart Vetterick Represented Buyer.

While East Gate contains Old-Bel Air, the neighborhood section has expanded over the years to include streets such as Airole Way, Stradella Road, and Sienna Way. On Airole, what Business Insider reports as the largest modern home in the country at roughly 105,000 square feet, “The One” was once slated as the most expensive home in America, listed initially at an astronomical $500 million. When sold at auction in 2022 for $141 million (including bidders fee) by Stuart Vetterick, Broker Associate at Hilton & Hyland, the deal further cemented the neighborhood’s status as a global hub for luxury real estate.

“Bel Air embodies affluence and opulent estates,” said Vetterick. “No matter where you are within the gates, you find yourself encompassed by an environment of architectural and societal influence.”

The West Gate, while still lined with trophy estates and architectural monuments, is typically known for newer construction homes. Much of the West Gate section of Bel Air burnt during the Bel Air Fire of 1963. Property sizes and styles vary, but the quality throughout Bel Air is not arguable. While many homes in West Gate do not have the same historical pedigree, many homeowners have enlisted the services of renowned architects and designers to add to the lore.

On Chalon Road is precisely that. Designed by renowned architect Swatt | Miers, 10901 Chalon is an impressive contemporary residence on over 36,000 square feet of premium Bel Air land. With impeccably manicured grounds designed by the remarkable landscape architect Design Studio Ma, the entire estate blossoms with color and grandeur. Represented by Christina Collins, Estates Director at Hilton & Hyland, the estate offers a premium luxury lifestyle.

In Upper Bel Air, view estates elevate expectations. Stretching North to Mulholland, this neighborhood section has many incredibly unique features. “Whether indulging in the sunsets over the Pacific or taking in the picturesque cityscape, estates in Upper Bel Air provide an unmatched quality,” said David Kramer, President of Hilton & Hyland. “Estates like 1940 Bel Air Road speak to the scale of homes in Upper Bel Air.” Boasting 17,000 square feet of luxury living space, the impressive Italian showcases the stunning backdrop of Stone Canyon Reservoir. With every detail meticulously crafted to showcase the finest of Bel Air living, the estate offers an exceptional lifestyle and an unparalleled location. Represented by Kramer and Roya Sklar, Estate Agent at Hilton & Hyland, elegance and sophistication are found at every turn of this exquisite view estate.

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