Hicks Walnut Place

We have heard rumors ever since he bought the most expensive piece of real estate in Dallas from Tom Hicks that he wanted to sell it.

Well, now he has gone and made it official: Andy Beal listed 10000 Hollow Way Drive, just west of the Dallas North Tollway at Walnut Hill Lane, on January 10 with the agent who sold it to him, Allie Beth Allman. Asking price is $48.9.

The estate is the same size as it was a year ago when Beal snapped it up — all 27,029 square feet —  and Beal is selling off every lick of the land of 25.25 acres. Only difference: the kitchen has been ripped out.

There has been much speculation that he would divide and split up the land, parsing the vast acreage into developable lots (think the Creeks of Preston Hollow) and sell the home on a 5 or 7 acre parcel. But for now, it appears he is selling it all lock, stock and barrel, including that torn up kitchen Beal ripped out to replace.

The price is also not surprising. We had heard the estate, once priced at $135 million when Douglas Newby had it, sold for somewhere in the $50 to $60 million range, which could have included furnishings and antiques.

Indeed, the sales price is LOWER than DCAD value, which has two properties (one a 20 acre plot, the other a 5 -ish acre plot) valued at a total of $61,278 ($4,152,000 plus $57,126,000).

So this could be the biggest bargain in town.

“He doesn’t seem to have a problem with the price,” Allie Beth Allman told Steve Brown. “He has other plans.

“I don’t ask any questions — just do what he says.”

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4500 Preston Rd extSo it was that very first asset purchase of apartments in Waco, Texas, little old Waco, that ultimately landed Beal the keys to the two most expensive homes in Dallas.



Looking at my most favorite site in the whole wide world, the Dallas Central Appraisal District — you know I scan it 24/7 — I see that the estate of the late Margaret Crow at 4500 Preston Road has changed ownership. It is now owned by “The Trust,” which has an address of 6000 Legacy Drive. The deed transfer took place on February 26, last month.

6000 Legacy Drive? Why, that’s the corporate offices of Beal Bank!  As in Andy Beal, the wealthiest man in Dallas according to Forbes. The billionaire who just snapped up the Hicks estate, the most expensive home in Dallas and likely Texas. I had been told he was shopping both properties and, just like when I cannot choose between two pairs of Jimmy Choos or Louboutins, I think Beal just bought BOTH of them! Two of the most amazing properties in Dallas!

The appraised value of the Crow home, which had been listed with Allie Beth Allman, is $24,265,480. The listing expired November 17, 2015. Last asking price was $46,000,000 for 6.13 acres in the prime part of Highland Park, with a 9500 plus square foot home of the utmost elegance.

In January, Andy Beal bought the $100 million priced Hicks-Crespi-Walnut Place estate at 10000 Hollow Way Road. The Hicks property is now owned by “The Daria Drive Trust” under the name of Jacob Cherner, founder and chief executive at CSG Investments at… 6000 Legacy Drive in Plano. The appraised value of the former Hicks estate, by the way, is now $41,274,000 on the 20 acre plot of land, then $3,082,500 on 2.466 acres. Which means Beal likely did not pay $100,000,000 for the whole estate (are those enough zeros?).

I LOVE the way this man buys dirt!

Map of 6000 Legacy Dr, Plano, TX 75024

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Andrew Beal photo courtesy of Forbes

Recall that when Tom and Cinda first put their 25.5 acre estate on the market, it was listed with broker Douglas Newby for $136 million. That was in January of 2013. The market was just waking up, of course, but behemoth properties are always tricky to sell because the buyer pool is so limited. When Allie Beth Allman and David Nichols got the listing in March of 2015, the price was lowered to $100 million. Which sounds like a lot, but with acres priced at $2 million just for the dirt, that’s $51 million for the land.

The Hicks bought the property in 1997, and they spent more than $100 million extensively renovating the four-story mansion, which was built in 1938. And they added buildings to the estate. In fact, when we toured the home, it was rather like being in a secluded little village of your very own. The long drive keeps out intruders, and security can roam the property.

When the Hicks worked on the home — they were living on Beverly Drive at the time — they doubled the square footage by adding on two wings to either side of the original mansion. They also added a basement housing a 20-seat theater with commercial equipment. And they added a chilled water system to run hot and cold water throughout the house instantly and heat the floors of the master baths.

And you couldn’t just “add on”: the home’s renovation had to carefully reflect the style and mode of architect Maurice Fatio, who designed the home for the original owners: Pio and Florence Crespi. As part of the purchase agreement, Florence lived at the estate until her death in 1999 even though the Hicks has possession.

Which reminds me: the Hicks are looking for a new home base in Dallas, but there is likely no rush to get out: they could always stay in one of the guest houses at Walnut Place!

Alexandre De Champliamaud

Alexandre De Champliamaud

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Peter Marino photo courtesy of Architectural Digest

The Hickses worked with New York City architect Peter Marino and Alexandra de Champalimaud to perfect the expansion and help match Fatio’s original vision for the estate. When they needed stone for the new wings, the original quarry from whence Fatio found stone was re-opened after decades of closure to make sure the stones matched as closely as possible to perfection. The point is, the home easily had more than $100 million in improvements and structure on land valued at $51 million in today’s market. So Douglas Newby was not too far in his original pricing.

So did Andy Beal — 62 year old founder and chairman of Plano-based Beal Bank, a college drop-out with interests in everything from aerospace to high-stakes poker, and a mathematical and investing genius —really cough up $100 million? He is a man known for making deals, a value shopper known as an aggressive bottom-feeder. Most agents I have spoken to believe he negotiated the $100 million asking price of the estate on Walnut Hill Lane. Thus far I’ve heard agents speculate he may have paid $70 to $80 million. Perhaps the Hicks estate was a bit more negotiable than the Crow estate? Or perhaps he did realize the deal was so keen at $100 million?

“Andy Beal is a value investor that’s been interested in the property,” Douglas Newby, owner of Dallas-based luxury boutique brokerage Douglas Newby & Associates, told the DBJ.“But his first choice was buying a home in Highland Park, if he could negotiate the right price.”

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We’ve been blogging about it for weeks now, and I have to give credit where credit is due: Steve Brown at The Dallas Morning News was first to publish that Andy Beal was interested in buying Walnut Place, the former Crespi Estate on Walnut Hill Lane that was listed by Allie Beth Allman and David Nichols for $100 million. I had heard Beal was going back and forth between Walnut Place and the beautiful Crow mansion at 4500 Preston Road. We know the Hicks are getting close to finding a new home in Dallas, and Allie Beth Allman tells me the 35,275-square-foot (67,689 including terraces) estate closed officially this morning when papers were signed. And Beal paid for the home in cash. She will not disclose the sales price, nor comment on my incessant questions about the Crow estate or sales price, but she did tell me that Andy Beal bought all of the estate, all 25.25 acres, and he plans to keep it intact.

“He doesn’t plan to split it,” she told me.

Bravo Andy Beal!

Allie Beth Allman is an amazing agent, and I had to ask her, how does she feel after pulling off the largest sale in Texas history — actually, in Texas and Oklahoma and probably in the whole southwest U.S. history?

“I don’t feel any different,” she said. “I went to back to work immediately. I had an agent calling me during the closing about another property.”

And while she could not divulge what the final selling price was, she did say that both parties were thrilled.

“The Hicks are thrilled, the buyers are thrilled,” said Allie Beth. “And you know I’m not happy if it’s not that way at every single closing, regardless of the sales price. We are talking about someone’s home and they should not just be happy but be thrilled with the entire process.”

If they are not, she says, then I haven’t done my job. And Allie Beth Allman ALWAYS does her job.

As for the Crow estate, she has a listing agreement and it is on the market and available for $46 million.  It was off the market for the holidays, she told me.

I have to laugh at those who said, and some who actually wrote, that this estate would never sell. It took David and Allie Beth only 9 months to sell a $100 million property.

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Until the Waggoner Ranch closes, this is the largest real estate sale in Texas history, and certainly will be the largest in Dallas history for years to come. The last largest sale in Dallas history was 5323 Park Lane, when Kelcy Warren bought the nine plus acre estate of Joyce and Larry Lacerte, designed and built by Cole Smith, decorated by Sherry Hayslip, and listed with Ralph Randall at Ebby Halliday. 5323 Park Lane was originally listed in 2008 for $45 million, then lowered to just under $40 million as the nation’s real estate bubble went bust. According to my sources, it sold for about $29 million-ish, and sharp Kelsey even asked for an outside appraisal. His buyer’s agent was Rosie Waters of Allie Beth Allman and Associates, who is married to football legend Charlie Waters, who works (or worked at the time) for Mr. Warren.

Dallas real estate — I LOVE IT! Jump for the story on Walnut Place, complete with photos, that we ran back in March of this year.Hicks Main House- Foyer and Grand Stairway (more…)

4500 Preston Rd extIt is such a tough decision, I do feel his pain. Word is that Andy first wanted the beautiful estate of Margaret Crow at 4500 Preston Road. It was listed for $46 million and remains an expired listing listed with Allie Beth Allman.

It’s one of the largest & most historic sites in Highland Park. The rare 6+ acre estate is in the heart of Highland Park, one of only 5 multi-acre sites that were created on Preston Rd overlooking Turtle Creek when Highland Park was created in 1906.  The Tudor structure with Craftsman touches was designed in 1912, and has had only 3 owners. The grounds including a century-old tree.4500 Preston Road fountain

But he changed his mind and bought Tom and Cinda Hicks’ Walnut Place, the former Crespi Estate, on Walnut Hill Lane, the most expensive piece of real estate in Dallas or even North Texas… aside from the $725 million Waggoner Ranch, which is also under contract to a consortium of buyers. (Word is they close today.) Walnut Place is one of the most expensive properties in the world. It’s current status in MLS is cancelled.

And it is also one of the most beautiful. Breathtaking! But then, so is the home of the late Margaret Crow. Which one would you buy?

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New York City, of course, is first with 53 billionaires who collectively are worth $1.53 trillion. But Forbes Magazine says Dallas came in right behind the Big Apple with 17 of the wealthiest, beating out San Francisco at 16. Of course, a lot of billionaires are scattered along the Peninsula south of San Fran. But then, I saw that Fort Worth had 8 billionaires, which collectively makes 25 of the world’s richest billionaires residents of North Texas.

I’m looking for their homes, all of them, starting with Andy Beal, worth $7 billion, Beal Bank. If you know where he lives, please email Candace@Candysdirt.com.

I’ve written about most of the others, so this ought to be fun.