Times are tough -- even for the 1 percent. Apparently, $8.5 million mansions in Beverly Hills aren't exactly going like hotcakes these days.
So when the hopeful seller of one such estate approached real-estate agent Michael Gardner with her dilemma -- "Freshen up my listing," he says she told him -- Gardner decided to give all those other sleazy Westside agents what they really wanted out of another Tuesday-afternoon open house: eternal youth.
Or, to be exact, a $300 giveaway of 27 Botox units. "Enough to deal with the 11s between your eyes," says Gardner --
With empty vials set up in the house as props. And two Thai massage girls, out by the pool. And the Gastro Bus food truck, parked out front. Even some sparkling new Audis for agents to test-drive in their new state of boyishness.
That's right. From 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. today, at the most absurd open house we've heard of yet this recession, Gardner expects a frenzy of aging agents to flock to Summitridge Drive for his party favors -- and hopefully glance at the property while they're there.
"Real estate is hard right now," says Gardner. "You have to give a little extra. ... I've gotten lots of RSVPS from people saying, 'I wanna win the Botox.'"
(Hopefully not including African dictators looking to spend their country's entire health and education budget on a fly L.A. landing pad. It happens.)
To be honest, though, we kind of get why it's not selling: That bubbly, marbly faux-Italian look is so 1998. Even SoCal's opulent Persian set is getting sick of it. Get a load of these curlicues:
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Then again, you can't go wrong with a pool perched on the Hillside. Insert Thai massage girls, and you're good to go.