Hollywood Local News

Restaurant owner told to pay rent on former convent

LOS ANGELES — A judge has ruled that a restaurant owner should continue paying $25,000 monthly rent for a former convent that both she and singer Katy Perry are vying to purchase, even though neither will live there during the pendency of a lawsuit to determine who ultimately gets the Los Feliz property.

Los Angeles Superior Court Judge James Chalfant said $25,000 is a reasonable price given that restaurateur Dana Hollister offered to pay that amount without requiring that she also be allowed to live there.

The judge, who described the former convent as a “nice property, but kind of a white elephant” in need of some improvements, said Perry did not offer to pay any interim rent.

Chalfant’s ruling also kept in place his orders that Hollister not sell or transfer the property in the meantime and that she not interfere with a priests’ house of prayer on the property. Beginning Nov. 1, she also must provide a monthly accounting of maintenance performed.

Both Hollister and Perry can visit the property under certain circumstances with adequate notice to the other side.

Attorney J. Michael Hennigan, on behalf of the Archdiocese of Los Angeles, and Hollister’s lawyer, Randy Snyder, both said they were happy with the judge’s order. Snyder said Hollister has not been living on the property, but has a caretaker there.

The archdiocese filed suit on June 19, stating that Hollister is considering using the property for a boutique hotel with a restaurant and bar.

According to the lawsuit, the archdiocese’s lease of the buildings for the priests’ house of prayer has a remaining term of 77 years.

The sale to Hollister is favored by two nuns who are members of the California Institute of the Sisters of the Most Holy and Immaculate Heart of the Blessed Virgin Mary. Hollister and one of the nuns were present in court, but Perry did not attend.

The sale to Hollister was for $10 million, of which only $100,000 has been paid, according to the archdiocese. The proposed sale to Perry would be worth $14.5 million, consisting of $10 million in cash and an agreement to provide an alternative property for the house of prayer worth $4.5 million, according to the archdiocese.

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