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New aerial images reveal Playboy Mansion remodeling progress after 2 years of renovations

New aerial photos reveal that renovations on the world-famous Playboy Mansion are almost complete after two years

The 29-room Holmby Hills mansion, in Los Angeles, was sold to billionaire Daren Metropoulos in 2016 for $100million but its former owner, Playboy founder and editor-in-chief Hugh Hefner, was allowed to stay in the house until he died in 2017.

Renovations on the former Playboy Mansion began in 2019 when Metropoulos filed permits to begin working on the property. 

The mansion was emblematic of Hollywood’s excess, hosting parties with lingerie-only dress code for the female guests who cavorted in the caved grotto

When Metropoulos took on the building in 2016 he promised to maintain its iconic exterior. Hefner was allowed to stay in the property until he died in 2017

BEFORE AND AFTER RENOVATIONS: The 29-room Holmby Hills mansion (left in 2003 and right now) , in Los Angeles , was sold to billionaire Daren Metropoulos in 2016 for $100million but its former owner, Playboy founder and editor-in-chief Hugh Hefner, was allowed to stay in the house until he died in 2017

Construction crews are hard at work as they enter the second year of renovations of the massive five-acre property

Construction crews are hard at work as they enter the second year of renovations of the massive five-acre property

The 29-room Holmby Hills mansion, which was owned by Playboy Enterprises, was sold to billionaire Daren Metropoulos in 2016 for $100million but Hefner was allowed to stay in the house until he died in 2017

The 29-room Holmby Hills mansion, which was owned by Playboy Enterprises, was sold to billionaire Daren Metropoulos in 2016 for $100million but Hefner was allowed to stay in the house until he died in 2017

Pictures taken last year show the work underway on the renovation of the iconic building

Pictures taken last year show the work underway on the renovation of the iconic building 

New images show just how much progress has been made in the last few months, including completed roofing  and most of the scaffolding surrounding the mansion gone.  

Aerial view of the massive, five-acre property the Playboy Mansion sits on in Holmby Hills, California as renovations carry on

Aerial view of the massive, five-acre property the Playboy Mansion sits on in Holmby Hills, California as renovations carry on

Scaffolding surrounds a structure being built on the massive five-acre property that was purchased by Daren Metropoulos for $100 million in 2016

Scaffolding surrounds a structure being built on the massive five-acre property that was purchased by Daren Metropoulos for $100 million in 2016 

Overhead views of the world-famous Playboy mansion show just how far along renovations have come two years later

Overhead views of the world-famous Playboy mansion show just how far along renovations have come two years later

The famous grotto, which was the epicenter of Hefner's legendary parties, appears to have been drained

 The famous grotto, which was the epicenter of Hefner’s legendary parties, appears to have been drained

The famous grotto, which was the epicenter of Hefner’s legendary parties, appears to have been drained.

Just last month aerial images taken at the back of the property showed new foundations being dug behind the mansion and the roof being in the process of being installed.  

The Playboy Mansion was built in 1927 and bought by Playboy Enterprises for $1 million in 1971. 

When the Playboy mansion was sold, it was agreed that the main structure of the residence would be protected from any major renovations – which the new owner appears to have stuck to. 

The famous residence was emblematic of Hollywood's excess, hosting parties with lingerie-only dress code for the female guests who cavorted in the caved grotto.  Pictured: Hefner with Playboy bunnies Sheila Levell and Holly Madison

The famous residence was emblematic of Hollywood’s excess, hosting parties with lingerie-only dress code for the female guests who cavorted in the caved grotto.  Pictured: Hefner with Playboy bunnies Sheila Levell and Holly Madison

The 29-room Holmby Hills mansion belonged to Playboy Enterprises before being sold in 2016. Pictured: Hugh Hefner and wife Crystal Hefner in 2014

The 29-room Holmby Hills mansion belonged to Playboy Enterprises before being sold in 2016. Pictured: Hugh Hefner and wife Crystal Hefner in 2014

Construction continued even through the height of the COVID-19 pandemic when California was under a strict lockdown and all non-essential businesses were ordered to shut.

Manual laborers were able to keep working if they were able to  ‘provide services to maintain the safety, sanitation and essential operation to properties and other essential businesses’. 

The famous residence was emblematic of Hollywood’s excess, hosting parties with lingerie-only dress code for the female guests who cavorted in the caved grotto.

Elvis reportedly slept with eight Playmates at once at the home, while John Lennon once burned a Matisse original with a cigarette.

Donald Trump even filmed an episode of The Apprentice at the mansion where contestants got to meet Hefner and his girlfriends. 

Hugh Hefner poses with some of his playmates as Playboy Magazine searched for the 50th Anniversary Playmate at the mansion in 2003

Hugh Hefner poses with some of his playmates as Playboy Magazine searched for the 50th Anniversary Playmate at the mansion in 2003

Hugh Hefner and his girlfriend Barbi Benton visited his Playboy Club in London in 1969.  Hefner called himself a 'very romantic person'

Hugh Hefner and his girlfriend Barbi Benton visited his Playboy Club in London in 1969.  Hefner called himself a ‘very romantic person’

The famous grotto of Playboy Magazine publisher Hugh Hefner is seen 11 January 2007

The famous grotto of Playboy Magazine publisher Hugh Hefner is seen 11 January 2007

The exterior of the  Playboy Mansion (pictured in 2004) was just as iconic and recognizable as the interior

The exterior of the  Playboy Mansion (pictured in 2004) was just as iconic and recognizable as the interior 

The home was built in 1927 for Arthur Letts Jr who was the son of a department store magnate. Pictured in 2004

The home was built in 1927 for Arthur Letts Jr who was the son of a department store magnate. Pictured in 2004

Who is billionaire Daren Metropoulos who owns the Playboy mansion?

Billionaire Daren Metropoulos is a principal at private-equity firm Metropoulos and Co.

The company co-owns Hostess Brands, the maker of Twinkies, an iconic American snack. 

Metropoulos bought the Playboy mansion from Playboy Enterprises in 2016 for $100 million.

Hefner was able to live in the house until he died.

After Hefner’s death, Daren said: ‘Hugh Hefner was a visionary in business, a giant in media and an iconic figure of pop culture whose legacy will leave a lasting impact. 

Billionaire Daren Metropoulos is a principal at private-equity firm Metropoulos and Co.

Billionaire Daren Metropoulos is a principal at private-equity firm Metropoulos and Co.

‘I was fortunate to know him as a neighbor and friend and I extend my deepest sympathies to his family.’ 

He previously said he intended to connect the two estates into a combined 7.3-acre compound after Hefner’s death, according to the Wall Street Journal.

Metropoulos said the mansion’s heritage ‘transcends its celebrity’ and that ‘to have the opportunity to serve as its steward would be a true privilege.’

The mansion also has a sinister past after getting caught up in the Bill Cosby sex abuse allegations.

Judy Huth claimed Cosby assaulted her when she was 15 at Hugh Hefner’s home. Chloe Goins claimed she was assaulted by Crosby at the mansion, but criminal charges in this case were ruled out. 

It also had a reputation of being dirty after multiple former Playboy bunnies spoke out about the dilapidated building and floors strewn with dog feces and urine.

In 2011, health officials confirmed that the bacteria that causes Legionnaires’ disease was found in a whirlpool spa at the Playboy Mansion where more than 100 people fell ill.

The Los Angeles County Health Department presented its findings at an annual conference at the Centers for Disease Control in Atlanta. The legionella bacteria also causes a milder illness called Pontiac fever.

Symptoms, which include fever and headache, are the same as those suffered by the Playboy Mansion partygoers. 

Hefner decided not to leave the mansion to his widow Crystal after his death but chose to sell it while he was still alive – with the condition he was allowed to stay there until his death. 

However he did leave her $5million and a 5,900 square foot house in Beverly Hills. Most of his fortune was split between his four children and various charities.

Crystal, 31, was the third of his wives, having married him in 2012.

He had previously been married to Mildred Williams from 1949-1959, with whom he had two children, and Kimberley Conrad – 1989’s 27-year-old Playmate of the Year – from 1989-2010.

Cooper, Hefner and Conrad’s elder son, said that he and brother Marston grew up with a framed photo of his mom’s nude centerfold in the home.

‘Yeah, that was weird,’ he admitted. ‘It was like the elephant in the room.’

Hefner also had a bevvy of ‘girlfriends’ who lived with him – usually several at a time – at his famed Playboy Mansion in Los Angeles.

Despite declaring that he had slept with more than a thousand women, Hefner spent much of his life ‘looking for love in all the wrong places,’ as he tearfully told The New York Times in 1992.

Hefner married Crystal – and took up a life of monogamy – in 2012 after briefly calling off the engagement. ‘Maybe I should be single,’ he said a few months later.

‘But I do know that I need an ongoing romantic relationship. In other words, I am essentially a very romantic person, and all I really was looking for, quite frankly, with the notion of marriage was continuity and something to let the girl know that I really cared.’

The year before their marriage, he had mused: ‘I never really found my soulmate.’


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