Real Estate Report: Historic Russian Hill Mansion, $12M


Where: 1032 Broadway, Russian Hill
Asking: $12,000,000
What: It was 1853– California had recently become the 31st State. People were pouring into a very raw and rough San Francisco to seek fortunes in the Gold Rush– and Joseph Atkinson built this grand Italianate Style house on the south slope of Russian Hill.

Atkinson had emigrated to San Francisco a few years earlier as bricklayer, quickly becoming a succesful contractor and real estate investor. The property would remain in his family until 1946, and the crisply remodeled interiors, now a showcase for contemporary art and design, still give a sense of what it was:

The second floor landing/gallery, and the master bedroom:

Design Pedigree: Believed to have been originally designed by architect Willian H. Ranlett, Beaux Arts architect Willis Polk redesigned the interiors in the 1890s and in the 1930’s the muralist/landscape designer Bruce Porter redesigned the gardens and some later renovations. In 2000, this 4-bed, 4.5-bath survivor underwent serious renovations with Landmarks Commission approval, including restoration of the terraces and balustrades, plus carving a new garage into the hillside and adding an elevator directly to the open kitchen. Because groceries can be heavy:

What We Love: While the house has spectacular city views from almost every roon, you can only catch a glimpse of this well-hidden gem from the street. Below, the terrace off the ballroom-sized master bath:

More: Have a look at the agent’s dedicated site for additional images and information. For more history about San Fancisco Landmark No. 97, go to the landmark designation page. The redoubtable Russian Hill Neighbors has a great self-guided architectural tour of the Russian Hill Summit, which includes the Atkinson House, and below, a view of Russian Hill after the 1906 Earthquake with the Atkinson House just visible above the retaining wall at left center:

Photo Courtesy of the Bancroft Library, UC Berkeley