609 E. Channel Road | Santa Monica
In Santa Monica Canyon, hidden behind a wall of lush plantings and tall gates, lies one of the most romantic and alluring estates to be offered in Los Angeles in many years. Perfectly positioned near the mouth of the canyon, the 3.3 acre estate is bathed in beautiful dappled light and studded with mature trees. One is struck by the improbability that a property like this could have survived, so magnificently intact, since its original conception in 1932.
Enter through a pair of antique wrought-iron gates into a world all its own: private, peaceful and resplendent, evocative of other places, but entirely rooted in early California style. The drive takes you past the charming gate house and sweeps through the vast gardens, past the glittering resort style pool and cabana, and up to the spectacular Old World Mediterranean residence, with its grand staircase and arched entry colonnade. The grandeur of the setting and the manor is tempered by a transcendent sense of how right this home feels, nestled against a green hillside, surrounded by the majesty of the canyon and caressed by the breezes from the Pacific Ocean, a short walk away.
Proceed into the home, and be transported to an earlier time of graciousness and beauty. The superbly scaled entry hall and public rooms are detailed with a subtlety and elegance almost lost in today’s world. Handsome art deco tiles, splendid ironwork and millwork, inlaid floors and hand painted ceilings are combined to striking effect. A curving staircase provides the shape for the oval entry, with its fluted columns and its beamed and decorated ceiling. A barrel vaulted hallway affords a dramatic approach to the exquisite living room, with its baronial beamed ceiling and stunning stone mantel. A sun room adjoins the living room, offering a casual spot to pass the time. The adjacent library, with paneled walls and another intricately carved stone mantel, is enlivened by a touch of surprise when, with a push of a volume laden panel, one infiltrates the hidden prohibition-era wet bar. If those walls could only tell their tales . . .
The perfectly proportioned dining room is on the opposite side of the entry, and is well suited to elaborate meals and celebrations with family and honored guests. A delightful breakfast room is adjacent, as is the bright and whimsical St. Charles-style kitchen, through which one can access two staff rooms.
A grand, high ceilinged family room with triple Palladian French doors overlooks one of the many terraces where one can take the sun, and observe the garden and pool. The room is flooded with light, and decorated with bookshelves and wedding cake moldings. A nearby bedroom and fabulous deco-tiled bath makes an ideal guest room or office.
Ascending one of the two grand staircases, you will find a very large master bedroom with marvelous views, and a carved marble fireplace. The master suite also includes two baths (one of which is outfitted like a spa), a gym/yoga/massage area, a huge walk-in closet and a separate dressing room or office. There are four additional bedroom suites on the second floor, all large and well outfitted with large closets and baths. Two of the suites have extraordinarily beautiful original tiled bathrooms in fanciful colors, typical of the 1930’s.
Leaving the main residence, one strolls across a terrace to the guest house, which contains two wonderful rooms: a pavilion-like sitting room with a fireplace, bath and kitchenette, and below it a large bedroom suite. The guest house terraces provide more peaceful views of the pool and the grounds.
The pool area is fantastic, with exquisite tile work and a cabana with bath and facilities for large scale entertaining. The pool itself is a marvel at approximately 72 feet in length, surrounded by a stone patio befitting a resort in France or Italy. The surrounding gardens are outstanding, with a luxury of space and an abundance of specimen plantings, including a ravishing rose garden. A wishing well, lily ponds and pools, a running brook (providing a secondary source of water), lawns and play areas, and the aforementioned two bedroom gate house complete what is certainly one of the finest estate properties ever to be offered on the Westside of Los Angeles. This truly is a home to be cherished, and a superlative investment for the future.