Wednesday, November 14, 2018
Bruce Willis Sale Makes Sun Valley History
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The Bruce Willis home has been sold to a family who came to Sun Valley for its world-famous skiing and got hooked on the community and everything else the area has to offer.
 
Friday, October 19, 2018
 

STORY BY KAREN BOSSICK

PHOTOS COURTESY OF JOANNE WETHERELL—RE/MAX RIVER RUN REALTY of SUN VALLEY

If you had your heart set on the 20-acre estate near Hailey owned by Bruce Willis, think again.

The property in the Flying Heart Ranch area between Hailey and Sun Valley has sold seven years after it was first put on the market in 2011. Its sale, which closed this past week, represents the most expensive single family home transaction in Hailey history.

 
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The estate sits near Flying Heart Lake north of Hailey.
 

The 20-acre estate sold for $5.495 million—a little more than a third of the original asking price of $15 million.

“We’re really excited,” said Travis Jones, one of the listing agents with Engel & Volkers Sun Valley.

Jones engineered the sale along with the buyer’s representative Joanne Wetherell, broker/owner of RE/MAX River Run Realty of Sun Valley, and Grady Burnett, a Realtor with Keller Williams Sun Valley.

The property sits in a beautiful wooded area with streams and ponds adjacent to Flying Heart Lake at 157 Aspen Lakes Drive.

It includes an 8,400 square-foot home with six bedrooms and six and a half bathrooms. Also on the property is a one-bedroom guesthouse that Willis built after purchasing the property in 2003, plus a  three-car garage that Willis converted into a workout gym.

Outside is a resort-sized heated swimming pool with what Wetherell refers to as Disneyland-like waterslides, waterfalls and a rope swing.

 “It isn’t your typical cabin in the woods,” reported People.com, as news of the sale broke.

Wetherell represented the buyer, whom she described as “high-profile but private” clients from out of state.

The family first came to Sun Valley a couple ski seasons ago to ski the world-class skiing at Bald Mountain owned by Sun Valley Resort.

They returned this past year and began looking for a resort home near Bald Mountain. When they couldn’t find a big enough home with enough bedrooms and space, they expanded their search to Lane Ranch and Elkhorn.

That’s when Wetherell got the idea to take them to the Willis property.

“They were enchanted by the property and the spaciousness of the home. And, with a growing family, the Flying Heart property has three lots they can build homes on, so it’s really great,” said Wetherell, who helped Willis sell another home in the Sun Valley area when the “Die Hard” star moved to Flying Heart Ranch.

The Flying Heart Ranch property is an attractive Craftsman-style log home with a formal dining room and great room with vaulted ceilings and floor-to-ceiling windows, exposed wood beams and a stone fireplace.

The kitchen features rustic wood, updated appliances and a center island and cabinetry by valley craftsman Tim Black, who spent more than a year doing woodwork in the home.

The 2,200-square-foot master suite occupies the entire second floor and features a jetted soaking tub, granite steam shower large walk-in closet and dressing room with built-in dressers and shelving.

Outside are expansive patios with outdoor fireplaces and a view looking out onto the yellow aspen thronging the estate.

“I think the family plans on spending a considerable amount of time in Sun Valley--they love the community,” said Wetherell. “And the caretaker is so excited to see this house brought back to life. We’re really excited to a have a family like this move into the area.”

Willis and his former wife Demi Moore were very visible in the Sun Valley area when they first moved to the Wood River Valley in 1988.

They saw it as a home where they could get away from it all, a place where they could raise their three daughters as regular people away from the craziness of Hollywood. But they didn’t try to hide.

They enrolled their daughters in what is now Sun Valley Community School and Laughing Stock theater productions, and they skied at Sun Valley Resort.

They brought and restored the Liberty Theater in Hailey, with Moore picking out the dark magenta curtains and the cushy seating. Willis premiered his “12 Monkeys” there and even starred in a couple plays in the art deco theater—one with Sam Shepherd.

And they invited friends from Richmond, Va., to set up their Company of Fools there.

Willis and his band periodically performed at The Mint Bar and Restaurant, which he bought and restored. BB King and Bo Diddley played there, and John Kennedy Jr. and Darryl Hannah partied there.

The couple turned an old launderette into a two-story mall of offices and shops anchored by Shorty’s ‘50’s-style diner. And on Demi’s 30th birthday Willis presented her with the beautiful Victorian turn-of-the century Friedman Mansion to house her 2,000 porcelain dolls.

He also bought Soldier Mountain Ski Area near Fairfield, donating it to a nonprofit community group in 2012.

As he spent less time in the valley, Willis tried to sell the Flying Heart property in 2011 for $15 million but was unsuccessful in the aftermath of the economic downturn. He tried again in 2016 for $6.5 million.

This isn’t the first time Willis has had to cut the price of a home. In 2014 he sold his Beverly Hills hacienda for $16.5 million--$5.5 million less than the original asking price.

The 15,000-square-foot Mint, which he sold this year, had a list price of $2.5 million at the time of the sale, down from the original asking price of $6 million. The new owners will have a grand opening on Oct. 26.

He donated The Liberty Theater to Company of Fools and the Sun Valley Center for the Arts. And he donated Soldier Mountain Ski area to a nonprofit community organization.

He still has a mansion in Bedford Hills, N.Y., a Manhattan apartment and a home in Los Angeles.

Wetherell said the transaction was a fun one for her.

“It was a pleasure to have the opportunity to sell a home owned by Bruce Willis. However at RE/MAX, we treat all our clients like celebrities."

DID  YOU KNOW?

While this sets a record for the highest dollar volume involving a single family home to close in Hailey, a land deal in Woodside involved even more greenbacks. Jason Roth  represented the buyer in a land deal in June 2005 that closed at  $19.5 million.

 

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