“I love Gone with the Wind,” says Spelling, posing in her 40-ft.-high foyer. “So this is my version of that beautiful staircase in the movie.” The crystal chandelier – one of 11 in the house – was purchased in France and hangs from a hydraulic system “that could easily lift a Smart Car.”
HOME SWEET HOME
With 73,500 square feet, the $150 million Spelling Manor is the largest home in Los Angeles County. “I spent four years, 24-7, planning this house,” says Spelling of the French chateau-style house, which boasts five acres of manicured grounds, a tennis court, a swimming pool and a beauty salon. “Now I need something smaller – just for me.” Her plan? To move into a 17,000-sq.-ft. condo (the same size as an attic in her present home). “I’m going to have to give up some things, but it’s time for a change,” she says.
An enormous screen rises from the floor in the room where family and friends gathered to watch late husband Aaron Spelling’s shows and first-run movies. “I had no idea what it would take to engineer that screen,” says Spelling. “No one advised me on the costs. They just said ‘yes.’ And then we’d get the bill.” To furnish the home, Spelling shopped everywhere from Europe to eBay, which she says is “too expensive now.”
Spelling has three gift-wrapping rooms in the home, including the smallest for everyday gifts (pictured). “When Liam was still coming to see me,” says Spelling of estranged daughter Tori’s 2-year-old son, “we changed his diapers right here on this table, so it’s good for all kinds of wrapping.” The other two wrapping rooms include one in the attic, which has a shrink-wrap machine, and one in the basement devoted solely to wrapping Christmas and Easter gifts.
There are hundreds of leather-bound scripts lining the walls and surrounding the same desk the producer used in his studio office. Aaron didn’t have a favorite among his shows, but Candy says they were both partial to the late-1960s hit The Mod Squad. “It was the first of his big successes and it was the beginning of us,” says the former model, who met her husband at the famous nightclub The Daisy and married him in 1968.
“I’m not sure I like to see a lot of portraits of the owner all over homes,” says Spelling. “But when Andy Warhol asked to paint my portrait, I couldn’t refuse.” After a day of sitting for the artist, who took hundreds of photographs, she was “so nervous” about what the 1973 painting, now hanging in the pool room, would look like.
“I first collected dolls for Tori when she was a little girl,” says Spelling. “But she told me that she was afraid of them – she felt like they were watching her in her room.” Spelling had a separate space built for the collection, which contains more than a 1,000 dolls on display and more in storage.
THE BOWLING ALLEY
Bowling was Aaron’s favorite sport. “He was great at it,” says Candy. When the producer was alive, guests and family often gathered after dinner for a couple of games. “We had shoes of all sizes for everyone,” she says. “We did have to have size-14 [shoes] made for Tom Selleck, though.” And special red-and-green bowling balls were brought out during the Christmas season.
“I bought this antique piano for our first house for $1,900,” says Spelling, photographed with her wheaten terrier Madison in the family room. “I think it’s worth so much more now, but that was a lot of money for me at the time.” What’s the one room she doesn’t have in the home? “I would have loved to have built them a playhouse here,” Spelling says of Tori’s children, Liam and 10-month-old Stella. “But I’ll have a playroom for them in my condo.”