Tuesday, May 26, 2009

The secret of Patio del Moro

Nina and Arthur Zwebell's Patio del Moro apartment building, at 8225-8237 Fountain Avenue, holds a secret: Two of the units—a studio and a three-bedroom suite that was once home to Charlie Chaplin—are offered for short-term rental by the building's current owner, Kevin McConnell.

Patio del Moro, West Hollywood (photo courtesy Kevin McConnell)

The streetside façcade, with its pink and funky Moorish-fortress stance, gives little indication of what charm and sophistication lie inside the gates of this fabled 1925 West Hollywood building. Former residents include not only Chaplin and his then-mistress, Paulette Goddard (in adjoining apartments separated by a service door), but also the likes of Joan Fontaine, Humphrey Bogart, and, later, Suzanne Pleshette.

The living room of the Chaplin suite (photo courtesy Kevin McConnell)

The sensitive restoration that McConnell has engaged on is, in his word, "an ongoing effort." Effort well-spent, I'd say.

The third bedroom of the Chaplin suite (photo courtesy Kevin McConnell)

Check back here later for an exclusive inside tour and an interview with McConnell about his and his inerior designer wife's five-year project to bring this important building back to the glamor of its heyday.

Meanwhile, if you have friends visiting from out of town, this is the perfect pied-à-terre to recommend for an immersion in old Hollywood. See the Patio del Moro website for more information.


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