Editor’s Note: This story has been updated here. Here’s the original story:
Having put his remarkable estate overlooking the roaring Bear River up for sale for $7.9 million, Andy Laursen has moved on from the Auburn area.
But the Silicon Valley businessman leaves behind a legacy of land preservation, charity work and one heck of a party house in Placer County.
The 10,000-square-foot home at 11391 Overhill Drive, off Highway 49, hit the market earlier this year. The estate is perched on 150 acres offering views of the river below from nearly every room. The property’s entire north boundary is the Bear River, said Bruce Renfrew of California Outdoor Properties, who is the co-listing agent with Sandy Ballou.
To the west are hundreds of acres owned by Placer Land Trust. Laursen and his wife Shana sold the land to Placer Land Trust at a discounted price, ensuring the protection of a 361-acre Bear River preserve. The entire Placer Land Trust totals 3,200 acres.
The main residence comes with five bedrooms and 11 baths, including a master suite, a full wine cellar, a movie theater, a gym, a third-floor office suite and bonus rooms—but at the center of the compound is an incredible entertainment venue that’s been dubbed “The Barn.”
The Barn, a 4,800-square-foot building, comes with a full commercial quality kitchen, a nightclub-level, 12,000-watt sound system, a 24-channel digital mixing board, disco-style lighting system, dance floor, bar and lounge. It is designed with a patio that overlooks a pool, waterfall and pond. A spiral staircase takes guest to the top of the facility, where there are two full bedroom-and-bathroom suites.
“The nightclub is pretty cool,” Laursen said. “I play drums and many stringed instruments, so it was a great practice facility as well as party venue.”
The Laursens also hosted annual parties at The Barn for up to 200 people, as well as family gatherings and fundraisers for nonprofit charity groups.
“Most New Year’s Eve events were themed, such as James Bond, Wizard of Oz, Gold Country Saloon, Dr. Suess,” Laursen said in an email response. “At the house, we had an annual Christmas party and summertime luau around the pool with freshly baked wood-fired pizza. We, also, had a gingerbread house decorating (and) family-style potluck during the holidays.”
He built a sport court and a chipping and putting golf course with nine tee boxes.
“Our summertime Caddy Shack party at The Barn and golf area was casual and well attended,” Laursen said.
There are also commercial-grade dog kennels and an enclosed horse pasture.
“Recreational opportunities will only be limited by time,” the listing for the property reads. “Decisions whether to golf on the putting green, play tennis or basketball on the sport court, hike to the river, or saddle up and ride the miles of available trails might best be made while having an early morning cup of coffee listening to the river roll through the canyon.”
Born and raised in Michigan, Laursen started his career at Bell Laboratories in the early 1980s. He soon moved to Silicon Valley and worked at Oracle for a decade helping design and build the company’s main database engine, as well as creating new platforms in emerging markets, such as broadband video servers and network computers.
“I moved to UnwiredPlanet, which went public as Phone.com, in the mid-90s and ran all software development,” Laursen, 61, said.. “We invented most of the underpinnings for the mobile web, including the first phone-based browser and all the back-end infrastructure to support mobile computing.”
Over the past 20 years, he’s started and invested in several startups.
The kennels on the proeprty were used to provide free fostering for Northern California dog rescue non-profits for about 15 years. The facility temporarily housed many dogs until they could be permanently adopted. The kennel area includes several outdoor dog play yards. The two indoor kennel areas are air conditioned with heated floors and were designed to accommodate guest-suite facilities, if desired, Laursen said.
The property uses a large, on-site solar array that offers “a virtual net-zero annual utility cost,” Laursen said.
Laursen recently decided to downsize and sell the house. He moved up to Bend, Oregon, to a place that still allows him opportunities to golf, play music and entertain. His sons, Ryan and Connor, still live in the Auburn area.
The property was listed for the first time earlier this year.