In December 2012, about a year after he and his second wife, English actress Talulah Riley, split up and later divorced, he paid $17 million for a 1.67-acre estate with a large and lavishly appointed mansion on a prime street that snakes along the border of the Bel-Air Country Club. According to Our Fairy Godmother in Bel Air, Mister Musk leased the estate for about three years before he bought it and listing details from the time of the purchase show that in addition to 7 bedrooms and 7 full and 4 half bathrooms the 20,248-square-foot residence included amply proportioned public entertainment rooms, a two-story library, a home theater, huge gym, and 1,000-bottle wine cellar.
The following October (2013), several months after it was announced he and Miz Riley had re-united and married for a second time, Mister Musk coughed up $6.75 million for the 2,756-square-foot ranch-style residence directly across the street from the mansion he bought the year before. That property, which backs up to the pristine fairways of the Bel-Air Country Club, had long been owned by beloved and recently deceased actor Gene Wilder who sold it in 2007 for $2.725 million to a couple that gave it a quickie renovation and used it as a temporary residence while their far more grand mansion next door was under construction. Mister Musk converted the Wilder residence to a private school where, along with the children of some of his friends and associates, his five children — a set of twins and younger triplets from his first marriage to Justine Musk, a woman who did not have the most flattering things to say about her ex-husband in a 2010 article in Marie Claire— are provided a non-traditional education. He himself described the set up in a 2015 interview in Vogue as “’like a little schoolhouse on the prairie, except in Bel-Air on a golf course’” with “’all these funny nooks and crannies and cute cupboards.’”
Alas, Mister Musk and Miz Riley’s marriage once again soured and in December 2014 he filed for a second divorce. However, by the following summer the on-again/off-again couple were back together and in July 2015 Mister Musk paid $20 million for a 7,026-square-foot contemporary on 3.41 acres that is not next door but rather a couple of doors down from the $17 million mansion he’d bought a few years earlier. There are unconfirmed rumors the terms of the couple’s reconciliation included an agreement they would, at least part-time, maintain separate residences and so that rumor goes the $20 million modern was to facilitate that unconventional arrangement. At right about the same time he bought the $20 million modern manse he paid another $4.3 million to acquire a modest and woefully dated if hardly inexpensive 2,963-square-foot ranch-style house on a high ridge directly above the newly acquired $20 million residence. Perhaps the smaller house was purchased to house staff, security or family members or maybe it was to preserve privacy in the outdoor spaces of the larger residence below. Whatever the case, it’s directly across the street from his latest purchase, the $24.25 million spec-built contemporary. There are still two existing homes at the end of the cul-de-sac that stand between the $4.3 million ranch house and the $24.25 million ultra-contemporary and, though it’s nothing but wild speculation, neither Yolanda nor this property gossip would be the least bit surprised to see the property mad Mister Musk buy both of those houses.
Meanwhile, back in March Miz Riley filed for divorce from Mister Musk. However, in July, a couple of weeks after Mister Musk was reported to have spent some time in Miami with Johnny Depp’s estranged wife Amber Heard — both parties claim to be platonic friends, Miz Riley told the Daily Mail she would “never say never” to getting back together with her estranged husband.