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San Diego’s Mega Mansions

Despite high interest rates and a lack of inventory, real estate sold for astronomical sums last year, and there are many multi-million-dollar properties on the market in 2024

$44.1 million beachfront estate at 2940 Sandy Lane in Del Mar (bottom right)
Image Credits The Guiltinan Group property: Photo by John Leonffu/Warm Focus; Linda Sansone & Associates property: Pool Photo by Vincent Knakal, all other Photography by Shay Blechynden; Lotzof and Associates property: Photography by Eric Poggioli

A top home sale in San Diego County in 2023 was a record $44.1 million beachfront estate at 2940 Sandy Lane in Del Mar (bottom right) which was previously owned by the Fletcher family’s Investors Leasing Corporation, according to Brian Guiltinan of the Guiltinan Group, who represented both the buyer and seller in the transaction. The buyer was not disclosed. The property includes a ranch-style main house, guesthouse, and detached apartment, with eight bedrooms and 7.5 baths in all. Just over an acre, the compound also has a swimming pool and tennis courts, not to mention those dazzling beachfront views. Guiltinan calls it “one of the most beautiful stretches of coastline in America.”

The home was built by C.E. Toberman, a real estate developer known as “Mr. Hollywood” who founded the Hollywood Bowl and Grauman’s Chinese Theatre (now the TCL Chinese Theatre) in the 1920s. The home later passed to his daughter Jeanette and her husband, Charles Fletcher, and has been cherished by the extended Fletcher family ever since, who celebrated holidays and summers together on the sand in Del Mar. 858.756.8770, theguiltinangroup.com

Real estate agent Jam Zayer sold a $23.5 million mansion at 5385 Linea Del Cielo in Rancho Santa Fe. “The location is absolutely phenomenal, so close to the village and so close to the coast,” says Zayer. “It is one of the premier lots, over ten acres, in the Ranch with absolutely spectacular views.” Built as a spec house by architect John Jensen and builder Greg Agee, Zayer says it took two-and-a-half years to get the plans approved and one-and-a half years to build. “What sold the house?” I ask. “The view is number one, the lot is number two, and the size of the house, about 13,000 square feet, is number three,” says Zayer.  Another feature, a Lamborghini Aventador, sparked considerable interest, but alas, was not included in the sale. The “Lambo,” borrowed form a car collector, was parked inside a space that could be used as a guest house or car barn.760.402.0595, thezayergroup.com

Another new manse in the Ranch, at 15250 Las Planideras, sold for $16.75 million in 2023. The 8,928-square-foot home on nearly three acres has seven bedrooms and 7.5 baths including a “kid” wing, as well as expansive outdoor living spaces: a veranda, pool, cabana, even a “mini football field” planted with drought-free Bermuda grass, according to listing agent Khaki Wennstrom of Wennstrom & Associates. There’s also a “man cave” complete with a golf simulator, multiple televisions, and a bar; wine and theatre rooms; and a six-car garage. Mark Radford was the architect, and the home was built by Josh Herbst of Herbst Construction, with interior design by Angela Tesselaar of Laguna Beach, who Wennstrom says, “understands luxury with functionality.” Wennstrom credits the home’s high-end finishes and furnishings, including a La Cornue range, with helping to show and sell the home for top dollars. (The furniture, not included in the sale price, was sold out of escrow.) 858.342.6671,

Now on the market at $19.5 million is “Paradiso in the Ranch,” a 9.2-acre equestrian estate at 5631 El Camino Del Norte, offered by Linda Sansone & Associates. Sansone says the property is a rarity in Rancho Santa Fe, where only 27 homesites in the Covenant are more than nine acres. Although built in 2021, the estate is “crafted to feel like a grand manor from a bygone era,” she notes. The 8,200-square-foot main house has custom touches throughout: walnut flooring, carved woodwork, and hand-troweled plaster walls. The kitchen includes custom cabinetry, hand-painted titles, Turkish marble flooring, a La Cornue range, coffee center, wine cooler and dispenser. A wall of glass in the great room opens automatically to reveal an outdoor loggia and infinity-edge swimming pool. (The pool can also be viewed via a window in the below-ground wine vault.) A combined home theatre, game room, and bar lead to a pickle ball court with a firepit and entertainment space.

Equestrian facilities include a 4,654-square- foot eight-stall barn, riding arena, a round pen with a four-horse walker, fenced pastures, and direct access to miles of beautiful horse trails winding through Rancho Santa Fe.858.775.6356, lindasansone.com

For those seeking privacy, 15815 Las Planideras in Rancho Santa Fe is the answer: an extraordinary five-bedroom modern estate built in 2020, situated on a 7.52-acre site on the desirable west side of the Covenant. Listed with Jason Barry of the Jason Barry Team for $17,895,000, this opulent home showcases chic contemporary styling with elegant Italian influences. The pivot entry door leads to breathtaking views through walls of glass overlooking a zero-edge radius pool.

The kitchen has top-of-the-line Miele appliances and a Sub-Zero refrigerator/freezer. Adjacent to the kitchen, the great room has soaring 14-foot ceilings with intricate wood detailing and a custom, one-of-a-kind fireplace known as the “Floating Fire Tray.” 

An automated pocket door leads to the private primary suite, where an LED-lit drop ceiling and a slab-covered fireplace create an ambiance of indulgence. The primary spa bath includes Fantini fixtures, stone slab walls, and automated window shades. The custom couture closet is meticulously designed, featuring Italian cabinetry and glass LED display cases. Additional highlights include a detached 1,000-square-foot guest house and a convenient in-home gym. 858.756.4024, jasonbarryteam.com

Dreaming of sand between your toes? A beachfront property at 2112 Oceanfront in Del Mar could be yours — for $21.95 million. Listed by Laura Barry and Jim Graves of Barry Estates, the 1,490-square-foot, three-bedroom, three-bath turnkey home is located on what Barry calls Del Mar’s “Golden Coast,” boasting the record for highest price per square foot among SoCal beach communities including Malibu. Although the beach itself is public, buyers can protect their privacy (and identities) via trusts and limited liability corporations (LLCs), closing sales without properties ever being advertised on the open market.
So, who’s who? Who knows!

The property features 50 feet of oceanfront, two-story high windows, a gourmet kitchen with Miele appliances, and a custom teak garage door and gates. The home is constructed of poured-in-place concrete to protect against salt air. 858.756.2266, team@barryestates.com

“The Experience at Vista d’Oro” is a contemporary coastal estate with 220-degree ocean views above La Jolla Shores at 2585 Calle de Oro, now on the market for $39.997 million. Architecture is by Los Angeles-based Studio William Heffner and interior design by Maison Trouvaille. The 7,808-square-foot home has seven bedrooms, six baths, and two powder rooms, fusing “organic elements with a touch of European sophistication and style,” according to listing agent Craig Lotzof of Compass. Private wings house luxurious suites, including a resort-style primary suite with awe-inspiring vistas and a spa-inspired bathroom. The gourmet chef’s kitchen seamlessly connects with a rear kitchen for exclusive chef events. Additional highlights include ensuite bedrooms, a teen lounge, and a cross bridge linking primary spaces. Outdoors, an infinity-edge pool overlooks the ocean, complete with an outdoor dining room and multiple lounges, lighted soccer field, and a separate yoga, gym, and meditation sanctuary, creating a self-contained haven. Located in the coveted 92037 zip code, the home is close to top schools, minutes from restaurants and businesses in La Jolla Shores, offering an easy drive to entertainment, music venues, museums, and shopping in La Jolla and Westfield UTC. 858.243.4071, 


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