Wednesday, November 06, 2013

Architecture Wednesday: Artemesia

One of my favorite house styles is the California Bungalow, or Craftsman style home. I’m a sucker for all the detail and the craftsmanship inside those houses, so I nearly wet myself when I stumbled upon Artemesia.

Artemesia is probably the best Craftsman house ever constructed, and is most certainly the largest: seven bedrooms and seven bathrooms in roughly 13,000 square feet with 6 massive Batchelder fireplaces and a green-tiled walk-down Roman shower. And the home has quite the history as well. It was built in 1913 as the family home of the largest builder west of Chicago, and he made sure no expense was spared. Over the years the home had been tinkered with, and modified, but, for the last twenty-five years its current owner has been lovingly restoring to its former glory. Just in time for its 100th birthday.

Artemesia is located on a gated private street in the Los Feliz neighborhood of the Hollywood Hills and has breathtaking views of the Capitol Records building, the W Hotel and the rest of Los Angeles. A long, gated drive passes though a porte-cochere, wraps around the front of the house and continues up the hillside to a detached red brick garage, with guest house or staff housing above. Numerous terraces and deep, shaded porches surround the house and give way to thickly wooded hillside grounds laced with pathways and dotted with waterfalls and ponds.

Some of the home’s more unique details include a 2,000 square foot ballroom and a built-in concert pipe organ in the living room; the pipe organ is the second largest residential pipe organ ever built.  And if having a concert pipe organ in your house isn’t cool enough to impress your audiophile friends, maybe having the earliest version of surround sound might do the trick.  The organ design includes a separate echo chamber of pipes at the outer edge of the second floor for a special echo effect.

Unfortunately, the organ is not currently operational.  According to the owner, a full restoration would run about $150K, but hey, if you’ve got $12 million in your bank to buy Artemesia, then surely you can afford to fix your organ, no? And then you can invite your friends over for a Silent Movie night, with real organ music accompaniment; in fact, Brad and Angelina live just a stone’s throw away, so they might wish to stop by.

The home includes over 13,000 square feet of living space plus a guest house on nearly two acres of wooded grounds with waterfalls and ponds. The grounds have been immaculately landscaped and make every angle of this incredible property simply breathtaking. The home also offers incredible molding work and 6 massive Batchelder fireplaces.

But, even forgoing the six fireplaces, and the restoration, you can’t help but be awed by the detail: the ceiling treatments in the formal living and dining rooms; the grand staircases; the massive windows; the barrel-vaulted, green-tiled bathroom with step-down shower; and the sleeping porch with Murphy bed.

And you can buy it, too, for a hair under $12 million.

Artemesia has been nominated for an award by the California Preservation Foundation for 2012, and it is also eligible for the National Registry of Historic Places.

Historic. Beautiful. Detailed. Craftsman.


The Huntress said...

The interior is not my style, but I like it anyway.

mistress maddie said...

I absoulelty adore the exterior but the inside is a bit to open floorplan on the first levels. I tend to like individual rooms. The gardens are stunning.

Bob Slatten said...

@MM I agree, but the upstairs rooms are deelish and that open plan space is the ballroom, so I can forgive them for going BIG!