In an always evolving city like Los Angeles, where old houses, even those that bear some architectural distinction, are not infrequently razed to make way for larger, more modern homes, it’s rare for an almost untouched 80-year-old home designed by one of the world’s most revered architects to become available.
In the historic and historically Outpost Estates neighborhood that rises in a steep canyon above the western end of Hollywood, a 1941 residence by iconoclast architect R.M. Schindler described in marketing material as being in “original condition with minor alterations” has come to market with an asking price of $2.4 million. Brien Varady and Matthew Berkley at Compass hold the listing.
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Known as the J.H. and Margaret Druckman House, after the original owners who commissioned it, the modestly sized residence is mostly obscured behind a thicket of mature greenery near the top of the canyon, where it meets Mulholland Drive. There are three bedrooms and two and a half baths, plus a study, in 1,662 square feet.
At the front door, a flat, cantilevered roof creates a tile-paved alfresco living space with an unadorned but notably oversized fireplace. Schindler used humble materials such as brick and rotary-cut plywood to great effect throughout the house. Vaulted ceilings add volume, and windows were strategically placed to harness light and provide glimpses of the sky via clerestory windows and open views over the leafy canyon thanks to vast planes of glass.
The main floor comprises a fireside living room, a dining area with plywood built-ins, and a galley kitchen with tile countertops on plywood cabinets. The kitchen’s original built-in dining banquette hovers just above the surrounding treetops.
There’s a powder room and a study just off the entrance, while the primary bedroom on the lower floor is joined by two guest bedrooms, both on the small side by today’s standard. The lower floor also includes a den, a laundry room, and two vintage bathrooms, one swaddled in lavender tile and the other with turquoise tile work around the tub/shower.
A balcony outside the dining area is complemented by a brick terrace that runs along the back of the house, overlooking an oval-shaped swimming pool placed in a shady glade and surrounded by handsome flag stone terracing.
Born and educated in Austria, Schindler moved to the U.S. in 1914 and later worked with other trailblazing icons of modern architecture, including Frank Lloyd Wright and Richard Neutra. (According to family lore, the pool at the Druckman residence was designed by Neutra.) Among Schindler’s most recognizable commissions are some of his earliest residential works as a solo practitioner, including his own home in West Hollywood and the Lovell Beach House on the Balboa Peninsula in Newport Beach.
Click here for more photos of the J.H. and Margaret Druckman House.
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