The 2.5 acres, located behind a private drive, include five separate residences, stone pathways, 12 fireplaces, eight fountains, and gorgeous gardens. You can move into this hidden gem for $12 million.
“The property is beyond special,” says the listing agent, Patricia Ruben with Sotheby’s International Realty.
The story goes that the five-home compound was built over time in the 1930s for one John Van Pelt, a music professor. About 100 years ago, Van Pelt and his brother Belford invested in California real estate and purchased a large parcel on an eastern Los Feliz hillside.
The musician subdivided the tract into 71 parcels, keeping the largest for himself, and naming one of the streets “Lyric Avenue.”
His estate was developed with five distinct homes, each built in a storybook style.
The interiors of the classic homes are eye-popping. The main home, Whimsy Hall, includes the anchor, banister ropes, and oars from Jack London’s boat “The Snark.”
The space also features vaulted ceilings, three bedrooms, two bathrooms, separate guest quarters, a wine cellar, meat locker, chauffeur’s room, and vintage outdoor kitchen.
Four additional cottages—each with a name of its own—can be found along stone pathways. You’ll find Star Sailer (sic) Manor, Sea Horse Lodge, Windjammer Cottage, and Sea Rover Cottage.
They’ve each been built with reclaimed wood from ships and bricks from a cable-car demolition site. A poolhouse is decorated with hieroglyphics. The grounds include fruit trees, stone paths, fountains, and a pool.
Van Pelt and his actress wife, Myra Marsh, were known to throw lavish parties at the fabled estate’s poolhouse, for guests like Lucille Ball and Bette Davis.
In the 1970s, Van Pelt’s son sold the estate to its next owner, who lived in the place for 45 years. He has passed away, and his family is now selling the spread.
The five homes can be used as a family compound, or even rented out. The delightful dwellings have been kept in good condition, thanks to a groundskeeper who maintained the property for the last 20 years, Ruben notes.
The location and the rare, unusually large tract of land are sure to draw interest, according to the agent. The locale is close to the park in a “very cool community,” she says.
And once you get behind the gates and traverse the steep driveway, “It’s surprising when you drive down the driveway,” she says. “It’s very romantic. There are so many pathways. It feels very separate and private.”