Save Iconic Architecture


Save Iconic Architecture, founded by design duo Ron Woodson and Jaime Rummerfield of Woodson & Rummerfield to prevent the loss of Los Angeles’ legendary buildings, is working feverishly to stop the complete devastation of the  legendary Eva Gabor mansion in Holmby Hills, designed by Paul R. Williams.

Images throughout by Douglas Cain 

One of the group’s board members went to the site this past weekend to discover that the estate at 100 Delfern Drive, which Save Iconic Architecture had worked tirelessly to have nominated as a Historical Cultural Monument, had been ruined. Ignoring the posted city “stop work order” noting that the residence was to be landmarked, developer Philip D. Rahimzadeh had stripped the facade, jeopardizing its designation.

The 7,000 square foot six-bedroom, four-bathroom Colonial Revival-style home, built in 1938 for the head of Columbia Pictures by legendary architect Paul Revere Williams. Williams, dubbed “the architect to the stars, was the first African-American admitted to the AIA, coming of age as the city did. His designs quickly became synonymous with Hollywood glamor. Elegantly composed, they boast perfectly proportioned rooms with sumptuous details including tall ceilings, exquisitely rendered cabinetry, sinuous archways and curving staircases. Equal parts show and substance, their opulence is balanced with restraint, sophistication and warmth.

The property has had a list of notable residents, including Audrey Hepburn and Mel Ferrer, Frank Sinatra and Mia Farrow, and David Niven. But it was via the last resident, Eva Gabor, the Hungarian-American actress and sister of actress and socialite Zsa Zsa Gabor, by which the house had come to be known. She’d called it home for nearly two decades. After her death in 1995, it was sold to Margaret Black, the former vice chairman of Morgan Stanley, and her husband, NASA astronaut David Scott, who was the seventh man to walk on the moon. When the house changed hands for $11 million dollars in May, the buyer had, according to reports, indicated that he was interested in moving into the home. Now, Save Iconic Architecture is working on next steps, organizing a protest for October. To learn more about their work and support them in their fight to save this property and others like it, donate here.

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