Larry Ellison Buys Rancho Mirage Estate at Discount

larry ellisonLarry Ellison, the sixth-richest man in the world, co-founder and CEO of Oracle Corporation -- a veteran home collector -- just got a deal on one of the most significant and notorious properties in the country.

In late January, Ellison snagged an 249-acre estate that once belonged to Edra Blixseth called Porcupine Creek in Rancho Mirage, Calif. The reported sales price was $42.9 million, according to records filed in Riverside County. The last-known listing price for the amazing spread was $55 million, which was a 27 percent reduction over the original asking price of $75 million.

Paying $42.9 million, Ellison got the property for almost half-price.

Agent Lisa Bessone of Christie's International Real Estate on Tuesday confirmed the sale of Porcupine Creek, but declined to divulge the buyer or other details.

The Desert Sun did some crafty work tracing documents that show a grant deed recorded on Jan. 28 by Porcupine Properties, and the paper/site then linked the paperwork trail back to Ellison's investment holding company.

Ellison was last reported by Forbes to have a net worth of $28 billion. Besides real estate, he

Search Homes for Sale See photos of homes for sale in your area and across the country on AOL Real Estate apparently likes tennis. He bought the Indian Wells Tennis Garden and its world-class BNP Paribas Open tennis tournament in 2009. Mark Hurd, the former Hewlett-Packard CEO, is a close friend and often plays tennis at Ellison's $70 million Woodside, Calif., estate, styled after feudal Japanese architecture, with a man-made 2.3-acre lake and an extensive seismic retrofit. Ellison has also purchased more than 12 properties in Malibu, Calif., worth more than $180 million. In early 2010, Ellison purchased the Astor's Beechwood Mansion in Newport, R.I., for $10.5 million. The property was the former summer home of the prominent Astor family.

Ellison also loves to sail, race his vinatge autos, and fly his private jet(s). Hopefully, he loves golf because Porcupine has a 240-acre private golf course as well as a most colorful ownership history.

Porcupine was last owned by Yellowstone Club founders Tim and Edra Blixseth, and was a central focus of their bitter divorce and subsequent bankruptcy action in Montana. Porcupine Creek is being sold to satisfy the Club's many creditors -- Edra alone has about $500 million to $1 billion in debts. In the late 1980s/early 1990s, her ex swapped the federal government 100,000 acres that he and two partners had bought in Montana for the primo real estate that is now the Yellowstone Club. Perhaps the world's sole, members-only ski resort, the Yellowstone Club is still uber exclusive, private, and boasts a Who's Who of members from Dan Quayle and the late Jack Kemp to Bill Gates, Starwood Hotels' founder Barry Sternlicht and News Corp. President Peter Chernin.

During the boom, the standard Yellowstone Club home was built with private elevators, wine cellars, movie theaters. One wild spec home, called the River Runs Through It, even featured an all-glass passageway to the guest quarters with a heated river flowing below it. When the financial world was rocking and rolling, the Yellowstone Club had $1,000-per-person New Year's Eve bashes in the clubhouse, complete with sommelier, concierge service and full access to the caviar bar.

In 2005, Tim Blixseth took out a $375-million loan from Credit Suisse and that's when things got naughty. He pledged the assets of the Yellowstone Club as collateral and used the Credit Suisse loan to buy up properties around the world, to fulfill his world real estate vision. Oh. Court documents also claim that the Blixseths also pocketed about $209 million in cash.

In November 2008, the Yellowstone Club filed for Chapter 11 protection.

The Blixseths spent extravagantly. Edra Blixseth hosted a $90,000 party at Porcupine Creek for about 100 guests, who were invited to whack pinatas shaped like her ex, Tim. The piñatas were filled with gold-foil-wrapped chocolate coins. This was, of course, after the couple split.

Perhaps some piñatas remain with the house: Mr. Ellsion has been married and divored four times.

The estate features an 18,430-square-foot Mediterranean-style main home with hand-painted ceiling murals, an amphitheater and a resort-style pool. There are eight two-bedroom guest houses, a gym, spa, an outdoor party grotto with a full-size stage, and commercial kitchens. The private home has been the scene for numerous charity events that often held 500 or more guests.

Oh, and last I heard, Edra remarried.

Real estate reporter & blogger Candy Evans is an award-winning, Dallas-based real estate reporter, blogger, and consultant. She's the gal who brought House Porn to the Bible Belt! Read more at Send story ideas and tips to

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I would rather read more about the good things Ellison does for other people instead of always reading about what new thing he has bought for himself.

February 19 2011 at 10:26 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply


February 18 2011 at 1:01 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Gates is a visionary who lives his life as he perceives an ordinary citizen should.
Ellison is a bombastic blowhard who lives his life as he thinks a billionaire should.

February 14 2011 at 2:24 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to paulcaldwell's comment

Without any regard for those around him. I completely agree, Paul!

February 19 2011 at 10:04 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
gary engen

Jim, even as your response to Lola says everything that anyone would need to know about your sense of 'justice' and how you define same, it also exposes your profound 'give a shi...' lack of empathy for your fellow man. You may be dim to the point, but selfishness/piggishness is no virtue. A caring, decent person would be embarrassed to present such a cold shoulder to all their brethren who so inarguably and conspicuously suffer this world's growing inequities.
Lola, don't waste your time "...casting pearls before swine". Pigs are without shame and will be pigs. By their behavior, clearly they do not manifest the requisite heartfelt responsibility to others that motivates a significant and blessed number of our more ... humane species ... to sincerely, selflessly and quite laudably, strive to ascend to a higher plain of awareness. And then, by the doing, bring true benefit to the rest of us.

The 'pigs' among us obviously do not care to know any better and just like the Biblical analogy wherein the wealthy are indirectly compared to camels so eloquently and ominously predicts, the obscenely self-centered, filthy rich, portly porkers, upon their moment of greatest test, will just like that proverbial 'camel', find it impossible to pass thru the eye of the needle. And that, Jim, will be no injustice. Gary Engen theloanarrangers To those that might retort, "How do you know if Mr. Ellison gives to charity? Maybe he is generous!"

One should give credit where credit is due. Larry Ellison was inspired to join Bill and Melinda Gates, Warren Buffett, et al last year in their "Giving Pledge" and good thing that was for his soul, for an arithmetically based argument re. historic levels of rampant egomaniacal consumption in Ellison's case could have easily been won prior to that point by any third grader and many would argue that it still could be, for like many considerations in this life, so it is with sharing; the real dimensions of an announced truth is often revealed by a matter of degrees. In an humble attempt to edify, here's another circumstantially applicable Biblical reference, "To whom much is given, much will be asked".

A few questions -- As we reflect on our own lives, what has stood out as bringing us joy? Things we bought or things we did for others? And when does our neighbor think more of us? If they notice us drive up in a fancy new car or if they witness us helping someone in need?
To that thought: Our social environment, of course, has an influence. Posing in Rancho Mirage, revolting in Tahrir Square or ladling out soup to the poor in LA or some other big city, in a real and kinda odd but discernible way, I guess what beats in our chest depends at least in part not only on how we would choose to live, but where. For myself, I do not pine to live in any of Larry's neighborhoods.

February 13 2011 at 12:19 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

so with all that propery and all those rooms - for 1 man - who MAY spend a few weeks a year there...........CAPITOLISTIC PIGS

THINK of how many homeless could live on that property, how namy starving people could be fed with that prce tag

THIS IS THE INJUSTICE that drove the people of Egypt into the streets - I can only hope that ALL PEOPLE in the world will rise up and realize the inequity that surrounds us all

February 12 2011 at 6:36 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to lola's comment

Where is the injustice? he earned his money and it is his right to spend it any way that he wants to...

February 12 2011 at 8:17 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Although they look beautiful, the palm trees are imported and not natural to the area. The neighbors in the surrounding area think it's a big joke. People move there because they love the natural surroundings so it's quite funny when they spend a lot of money to try and change it.

February 12 2011 at 3:55 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
2 replies to Marit's comment

poor poor lola. what are we listening to, your jealousy?
you're pissed off someone with a great idea ran with it and was a huge success. the guy has to live someplace and he just happens to choose right there. and what gives a crap whether the trees are imported from another location. enjoy your apartment and start looking at what you have achieved ot not achieved, and why you feelit necessary to dwell on someones success in such a negative and derogatory way....and as for the homeless, most of them are there because they want to be there without any responsibilities or job to contend with. they can't handle running a house, finances and cars. it really annoys me that they think it is my job to support them every time they hold their hand out. life is what you make of it. get off your butt today and do something, start the ball rolling, to enrich your life and your childrens wont be sorry you did.hard work, tenancity, perseverance and a can do attitude will get you into a better life.

February 18 2011 at 12:57 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

@sambo - FYI, idiot, I have lived in Rancho Mirage for 20 years and the locals here can't stand people like Ellison who want to live here because of the natural surroundings but then go about trying to change it. Just like he decided to park his over-sized yacht in the bay of a small island without any regard for the impact this might have on the aquatic wildlife in the area. I might have money but I don't use it to impose on others. Larry Ellison is a big buffoon who believes that "he who has the most toys wins." And you, my friend, have just stuck your foot in your big fat mouth.

February 19 2011 at 10:20 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I have watched the Blixseths with repugnant fascination over the years since I live fairly close - not enough to be in their rarified world, but close enough. When the Blixseths were still in a lovey dovey state, Edra threw him a 50th birthday party at this infamous Porcupine Estate. At midnight, with complete disregard for humans and animals, she had fireworks set off which terrified the few remaining Bighorn sheep in the area during lambing season. At that point, I figured these people were the most selfish I had encountered. So, when it all blew up, I had a bit of smug satisfaction and I am sure the sheep baaahhhhed thankfully. Let's hope Mr. Ellison is a better neighbor to our fragile environment than the Blixseths were.

February 12 2011 at 3:19 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

How is 27% almost half?

February 12 2011 at 10:26 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Nancy Croom


February 11 2011 at 5:34 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
2 replies to Nancy Croom's comment

good luck to you in the new home in Rancho Mirage, we love it there, unfortunetly we are not able to go there any more due to financial problems,( bad things happen ) but it's good to see some people are still very fortunate in life, enjoy beautiful Rancho Mirage, we wish we could be there too.. if you ever have to donate a small fortune, please think of us..thankyou .

February 12 2011 at 2:42 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

To jiujwn, crnr8, and janejyue:

Why do you people insist on using the Comment section as a way of getting free advertising? Your "comments" are equivalent to graffiti on blog sites and it makes me so angry that sometimes I actually forget what I was reading about in the first place. People skip over your ads without even reading them because WE JUST DON'T CARE! May I remind you again what it says below. PLEASE KEEP YOUR COMMENTS RELEVANT TO THIS BLOG ENTRY!!!

February 12 2011 at 4:06 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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