Saturday, July 18, 2009

A nice find

This quirky 1926 storybook house (but aren't all 1926 L.A. storybook houses quirky?) just south of Hancock Park sold for $1.4 in May, according to, and is now being thoroughly renovated, with new trenches dug for garden walls and a thorough refurbishing of the turrets, among other sensitive preservations.

It's hardly the most beautiful house in this neighborhood of lovely, undertstated manses, but I was certainly struck by the commitment the new owners are showing to preserving the movieland ethos of this only-in-L.A. original.

846 S. Longwood Ave. under renovation

846 S. Longwood Ave. before (from

A handful of workmen were still there on Saturday when I drove by just at quitting time (and witnessed a bit of after-work wagering going on in the driveway). They generously let me take a peek inside.

The best features of the interior are being preserved.

The detached garage and its upstairs unit are utterly charming. I think I could be quite happy living up there.

Garage and second-story unit

Due to the curvature of the street at this point, the house faces a stretch of Longwood just north of Olympic, one of the most beautiful residential blocks in Los Angeles.

If anyone knows more about the history of this house, please post in the comments.


  1. I lived for many years in that neighborhood, which is called Brookside, because the stream that rises on the Wilshire Country Club comes to the surface sought of Wilshire and runs through the backyard gardens of many Longwood houses. (I believe the Brookside boundaries are Freemont Place on the east, Highland Ave on the west, Wilshire on the north and Olympic on the south.) As I recall the neighborhood lore, that house is not Hollywood storybook in inspiration, but a copy of the original owner's family home in Quebec Province. Brookside has an old and active neighborhood association and somebody there probably has the documentary evidence.

  2. Is there still a gallery running around the living room? I lived on the 900 block of Longwood as a child in the Sixties and was inside the "castle" a couple of times, but unfortunately don't know the history. I was reminded of the house recently because the exterior was featured on an episode of the cop show Southland.

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