The Sten Frenke Estate – Santa Monica, CA Richard Neutra, Architect – 1934 City of Los Angeles Historic-Cultural Landmark No. 647
After being tapped by Samuel Goldwyn to become the next Greta Garbo, popular Ukrainian film actress, Anna Sten, and her producer husband Dr. Eugene Frenke relocated to the United States, where they engaged the most prestigious architect of the time – Richard Neutra – to build an estate befitting of the Hollywood elite who would be frequenting the property.
The three-bedroom house is Neutra at his best: sublime natural light garnered through continuous ribbons of glass; serene, contemplative spaces vying for extended visits; and an immediate and direct connection to the exquisitely-planted, expansive lot. The home sits at the rear of the property presiding over the impressive, ozonated pool, which was designed to place the beautiful Sten and her coterie on display.
The property has benefitted from two, recent restorations; the first by the revered architectural firm Marmol Radziner (who updated the infrastructure of the home and carried out a mid-century interpretation of the aesthetics) and the second by noted architectural restoration experts - designer Mark Haddawy and general contractor Dave Binder - who, after rigorous review of UCLA’s Neutra archives, restored the home to its original design in order to honor the integrity and the importance of the architecture of Richard Neutra – the undisputed pinnacle of mid-century modernist architecture.
The current owner engaged the globally renowned firm of Johnston Marklee to take advantage of the lot’s prodigious size and design a creative work studio along with additional guest accommodations. Often the introduction of an additional structure alongside an architectural masterpiece results in an aesthetic abomination and a diminution in value. The Johnston Marklee contribution, however, harmonizes with and elevates Neutra’s Sten Frenke House.
The property encompasses two lots, offers ocean, whitewater and beach-sand views and, situated in one of the most enviable locations, is proximate to one of the City’s most coveted beaches and to some of the City’s best restaurants. The property’s energy needs are supplied, in part, through the property’s on-site geothermal generators. Also included are a three-car garage, hot yoga room, and sauna.
Structural StyleSingle Family Detached
PoolHeated, In Ground
ViewCoastline, Ocean, Panoramic, Pool, Tree Top, Water, White Water
ParkingGarage - 3 Car, Garage Is Detached, Private Garage
FeaturesImportant architecture, Pool, Guesthouse, Gated, Work from home