I Could Live Here: Villa Paradiso


While researching a story for CH+D‘s September issue, I decided my new dream house would be Spanish-Moorish in style with a Spanish tile roof, oggi arches, plaster walls, Moroccan tiles and maybe a little cupola. 


And there just so happens to be a “tribute to the Spanish-Moorish Revival” for sale—in Laurel Canyon in Los Angeles. Listed by Rich Kids Real Estate Group for $1.2M, the 5BR/3BA house at 1808 Laurel Canyon was built in 1926 and was included in the 1977 book, A Guide to Architecture in Los Angeles and Southern California

Though it could probably use a major restoration to bring it back to it’s stately grace, some of the  original Spanish-Moorish details are very cool and reminiscent of the Majestic and Fox theatres that were built around the same time. Check out the arched doorways, wrought-iron balconies, Spanish tiles, painted beams and thick plaster fireplace in the main living room: 

Though it’s clearly been hijacked by a Cribs-reared generation of young Hollywood types, this house has real potential. Imagine a mix of Mission-style antiques and Moroccan imports, rather than a sea of black leather  peppered with Arts & Crafts accessories—big long refectory tables, high-back chairs, heavy-duty brass pendants and maybe even a hide-covered pouf. This house should and could be a fabulous party pad. If it were mine, I would tear down this living room wall and replace it with a wall of glass to open the room up to that courtyard with the giant fig tree. Framed in some fabulous embroidered drapes, it would be like the gateway to a Casbah-themed outdoor room:

And though I could live with the existing rooms upstairs (especially the sexy red bathroom), I’d eventually update them with lighter, brighter materials and lots of mosaic tile and thick white plaster. 

But if I had to live in Los Angeles, home of Rich Kids Real Estate, I think I could definitely be happy in a spot like this.