Admit it. You’ve dreamed of living there. Whether you’re male or female, the thought of residing within the sexy walls of the Playboy Mansion has crossed your mind once or twice. If you’re a man, the reasons are pretty obvious. A cool bachelor pad filled with gorgeous women. The champagne flows like water and the breasts are as high as an elephant’s eye.
For women, it’s less about Hugh Hefner, the octogenarian editor of the famous/infamous adult magazine, and more about the pampering and worshipping you’d receive as a female resident. And security is just a nod away for creep/loser removal. So whether you have breasts or you’re just interested in seeing some, it seems like a pretty sweet deal, right?
You could spend your days sunning yourself on the extensive grounds amongst the monkeys and peacocks, sipping cocktails in the grotto and then party with the pretty people and share some…intimate time…after the sun sets.
Don’t pack your bags just yet. As it turns out, things aren’t all bunnies and bikinis everyday. The Playboy Mansion, just like any other dwelling, has its pluses and minuses. Before moving in, consider these 10 things you may not know about the Playboy Mansion.
10. Dirty Living
The first floor of the mansion includes the main entrance/greeting area, the kitchen and dining area. The second floor contains all the bunny bedrooms and Hef’s master bedroom. According to some Playboy bunnies/ex occupants of the mansion, things weren’t exactly up to code, cleanliness wise. There have been reports of old, stained bedding, not-so-clean mattresses and dingy furniture. Along with this, the girls have pink bedrooms with white carpeting—which doesn’t leave much to the imagination when it comes to the stains left behind from all the pet dogs running around. The curtains are also used for the dogs to relieve themselves, leaving behind a not-so-pleasant aroma. Apparently, the girls would replace items like mattresses and bedding out-of-pocket, and were only reimbursed after producing receipts for each item.
Word has it that Hugh Hefner used to have two to a dozen “steady” girlfriends living with him at a time. These girlfriends are not to be confused with Playmates. Hef’s girlfriends were rarely playmates because, according to an ex-girlfriend, Hef was worried the ladies would collect the Playmate paycheque and be on their merry way. Each girlfriend had their own room, but one “special lady” was named as girlfriend number one and stayed with Hef in his room. The other girlfriends would swing by his room on sex party nights, where they would spend the evening partaking in – well, you can fill in the blanks there. Now, Hef is married to 2009’s December Playmate of the Month, Crystal Harris, who is 60 years his junior. This is his third marriage. Hef first tied the knot waaay back in 1949 to Mildred Williams, and together they had two children. They divorced in 1959 and thirty years later Hef took vows again, this time to Playmate of the Year Kimberly Conrad. They divorced in 2010.
The girlfriends living in the house would apparently abide by a 9:00 pm curfew – pretty unbelievable for the “wild and crazy” Playboy Mansion. At this time, they are expected to be on the grounds of the mansion, unless they are accompanying Hef out on the town, which happens only two or three nights per week. Staff take notes of which girls break curfew, which can result in losing a week’s “allowance” (the $1000 per week doled out to each girlfriend). The allowance is important to the girls, as they are not allowed to have any other jobs outside of their Playboy responsibilities. In addition to the allowance, they did receive a car, medical coverage and assistance with cosmetic surgeries. One of the most famous of Hef’s ex-girlfriends, Kendra Wilkinson, was once quoted as saying the constant enforcement of the curfew and Hef’s monitoring of the girls drove her “insane.”
7. Party Time
While Hef is a married man, he doesn’t let the ol’ ball and chain hold him back from throwing his famous parties, such as Mardi Gras, the Midsummer Night’s Dream bash, his fourth of July get together or his Halloween soiree. And don’t forget his birthday party. The guest lists are exclusive, with Hef deciding on who gets past the gates and who is left out in the cold. Once in a while, you can find auctions selling tickets to the big parties and they go for thousands of dollars. If you track down tickets on the cheap, take heed; they are most likely fakes. The funny thing is that according to an ex-resident of the mansion, Hef isn’t a big partier. He prefers to lounge in his pajamas and robe, watching the same classic movies over and over again, and indulging in his favourite snack: cookies.
6. Wild Animals
The crazy partygoers aren’t the only wild ones on the property. The Playboy mansion is home to dozens of exotic animals and it is one of very few private residences that actually has a zoo license. Hefner is a fan of birds and they can be found all over the grounds. There are plenty of peacocks, macaws, flamingos, toucans and ducks. Plus, it is home to actual furry bunnies, not just the tan, blond, bikini-clad type. The highlight, however, is a cage that houses approximately 100 squirrel monkeys that are actually pretty darn adorable.
5. The Grotto
When you think of the Playboy Mansion, you automatically think of the infamous Grotto. You can probably picture it in your mind. The fake cave of rocks, the blue whirlpool, the waterfall, the dim lighting. The strategically placed (slightly dingy and mouldy) mattresses surrounding the water in case people want to indulge in a quick…nap. The private and secluded area seems like a sexy hideaway where you can share an intimate experience with a lucky someone. More likely however, is that you’ll catch a disease from the bacteria-filled water. In 2011, the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health discovered the bacteria responsible for causing Legionnaires’ disease in the whirlpool after 123 fundraiser attendees became ill. Sure, this may have been a one-time thing, but imagine what has gone down (yes, I said it) in that water. Though it may be tempting to take a dip, my recommendation is to stay on dry land.
The bedroom isn’t the only place with fireworks going off (get it?). With the many festivities occurring on just about any night of the week, one must set off celebratory fireworks at a moment’s notice. The Playboy Mansion is the only private home in Los Angeles that actually has a permanent fireworks permit, or pyrotechnic license. The fourth-of-July fireworks show is a big hit every year and can be seen for miles around. Something tells me that the neighbours aren’t loving this Playboy perk.
3. Hef is a Renter
The original mansion was in Chicago, where Playboy Magazine was founded. You might be interested in knowing that a brass plate hung in that mansion that read, “If you don’t swing, don’t ring.” In the 1970s, Hef moved to LA and into the more familiar mansion we all know today. You might be surprised to know that Hugh Hefner doesn’t even own the mansion anymore. The mansion is owned by Playboy Enterprises and Hef merely rents out portions, room by room, for his personal use, areas for the playmates and space for guests. The property is valued at nearly $60 million.
2. The Elvis Room
Within the elusive mansion is a secret space, dubbed “The Elvis Room.” Legend has it that in the early 1970s, the King of Rock and Roll himself, Elvis Presley (who would have been 80 this year), had a little slumber party in said room with up to eight eager bunnies. People are dying to get a peek at the area where the hunka hunka burnin’ love spent his nights, but Hefner keeps it hidden from the public eye, preserving the room and creating even more mystery surrounding the goings-on at the mansion.
1. You’re Banned!
The mansion is a hot spot for high-profile athletes and (mostly C-list) celebrities. Frequent visitors have included Charlie Sheen (surprise, surprise), Snoop Dogg, Corey Feldman, Pauly Shore and David Hasselhoff. Ex Playmate and mansion resident Izabella St. James said back in the day, Leonardo DiCaprio pretty much lived at the mansion. But even celebrity status doesn’t mean you can break the rules. Several people have been banned from the 29-room mansion over the years, for a few months, years or even for life. Luke Wilson was banned in 2006 when he tried to sneak a friend in with him, claiming it was his brother Owen. He was banned for a year and a half and did some apologizing/groveling to get back in. In 2007, NFL star Reggie Bush was banned for a conduct violation. No one is sure what that means, although it reportedly had nothing to do with a bunny. Most surprisingly was the near-ban of John Lennon, who drunkenly extinguished his cigarette on a priceless Matisse painting. Apparently, the painting still hangs in the mansion.