Even after his passing, Jerry Lewis can make the tote board spin.
The Las Vegas estate in which Lewis and his wife, Sam Lewis, lived for 35 years drew a stunning $2.5 million offer from an undisclosed bidder at auction Saturday afternoon.
The home had been listed by current owner Jane Popple for $1.8 million. Sam Lewis sold it to Popple for $1.2 million on June 30.
Azi Williams of Real Estate Resolution Corp., who along with his brother, John, conducted the auction, said the sale pends a review of the buyer’s financing. Popple needs to formally accept the offer. In a phone conversation Saturday, she said she didn’t want to make any comment about the terms of the sale — which were fresh as she spoke — but was pleased that the home attracted such interest.
“I made sure this was done right,” Popple said in a phone chat Saturday. “We weren’t trying to fool anybody.”
The sale of other, non-Lewis items offered for auction continues through the weekend at Lewis’ former home 1701 Waldman Ave. in the city’s historic Scotch 80s residential district. Also up for bid is a high volume of fine art and jewelry that was not part of the Lewis estate, but owned by Popple and also a friend of hers who is an avid collector.
The announced sale caused confusion and concern among the Lewis family, as flyers and the auction website listed many items under Jerry Lewis’ name to make it appear as if the property once belonged to him. Sam Lewis actually attended Saturday’s sale for about 30 minutes to make sure the items were properly identified. Neither Popple nor the auctioneers were aware Lewis was in the home.
“I was pleased to find that Jerry’s name wasn’t used in selling the jewelry or the art,” said Lewis, who left the property before the home itself was put up for bid. The family had left behind a few items and some furniture, including the master bedroom set and a wooden desk that was purchased for $1,000 by Laugh Factory headlining magician and Lewis fan Murray Sawchuck.
The magician also bought a dartboard once owned by Lewis for $400.
Popple is a well-known, high-profile real estate investor. She purchased casino legend Ted Binion’s estate on Palomino Lane in 2017, and famed singer Juan Gabriel’s estate on Pinto Lane in 2014. She sold the Binion estate in March, and Gabriel’s in October.
Popple said she wished she had run into Sam Lewis during Saturday’s sale, saying, “She seems very nice, very sweet.”
John Katsilometes’ column runs daily in the A section. His PodKats podcast can be found at reviewjournal.com/podcasts. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow @johnnykats on Twitter, @JohnnyKats1 on Instagram.