Trousdale Estates Real Estate
Consisting of sprawling view properties limited to single-level homes, Trousdale Estates is an exclusive low-density residential neighborhood in Beverly Hills. The community occupies a peninsula of land in the hills above Sunset Boulevard that is surrounded by the city of Los Angeles.
Ideally situated in the northeastern section of Beverly Hills, Trousdale Estates is a 410-acre hillside enclave comprising of many architecturally important single-story homes on terraced lots, rising steeply above Sunset Boulevard.
The area was first developed in the mid 1950s on land that was once part of Greystone Mansion, the infamous stone manor house built by the oil rich Doheny family. Trousdale, as it is called by those in the know, was brought to life by the developer Paul Trousdale, who purchased the land from the Doheny family and used his influence to convince the city of Beverly Hills to annex the area into its borders.
Over the Top
The original advertisements for Trousdale Estates promised “Life Above It All.” And when the sales office opened in 1954, celebrities, captains of industry and wealthy society families vied for the most coveted home sites. They enticed the most fashionable architects of the day with seemingly unlimited budgets to design and build sprawling and elegant homes for the ultimate in Southern California living.
Trousdale Estates quickly gained fame for its concentration of celebrity residents and the unrestrained extravagance of its architecture, notes design writer Steven Price, who is currently producing a coffee table book on the architectural history of Trousdale Estates. The book is entitled Over the Top, a reference to the neighborhood’s location atop Beverly Hills as well as its storied architectural flamboyance.
Trousdale Estates Style
Many are surprised to learn that Trousdale Estates lays claim to Southern California’s largest and most complete colony of residential work by virtually every renowned architect who worked in Los Angeles, including the biggest names in what came later to be known as “Mid-Century Modern.”
Homes designed by Wallace Neff, Paul R. Williams, A. Quincy Jones, Lloyd Wright and Harold Levitt – as well as many lesser known but equally impressive architects – can still be found in Trousdale, often in nearly original condition.
And those architectural gems are attracting a new wave of innovative tastemakers, celebrities, architects and designers who are revitalizing the area, making it sizzling hot once again.
Jennifer Aniston chose Trousdale when she set out to build her ultimate dream home. The actress reportedly paid $13,500,000 for a Harold Levitt house – just around the corner from her “Friends” co-star Courteney Cox-Arquette – and then spent the next two-and-a-half years rebuilding the house from the ground up.
And late last year, Beverly Hills real estate circles began to buzz with the news that DreamWorks co-founder Jeffrey Katzenberg had quietly paid $35,000,000 for the former home of Simon Ramo (the “R” in TRW) in what was Los Angeles’ largest residential real estate transaction in 2009.
What is even more extraordinary about Katzenberg’s purchase is that the price paid was basically for land value. The movie executive is reportedly set to tear down the existing 9,000 square-foot 1965-era residence to build a new 12,000 square-foot showplace.
The appeal of the area is easy to understand. Its location is just minutes away from the unrivaled shopping of Rodeo Drive and the nightlife of the Sunset Strip, while the lots are flatter and the streets wider than in the canyons of the Beverly Hills Post Office area. And by living within the city limits of Beverly Hills, residents enjoy lower taxes, unrivaled police and fire services and access to coveted public schools – not to mention the prestige of a 90210 zip code.
Buying in Trousdale Estates
Despite boasting a number of high dollar sales, Trousdale Estates has many homes that are surprisingly well-priced when compared to the nearby neighborhoods of the Bird Streets and Doheny Estates, where smaller homes often come with $10 million-plus price tags and lack the benefits of a Beverly Hills address.
For example, a celebrity-owned home in Meredith Place has recently undergone a complete top-to-bottom remodel and is currently listed by Sotheby’s International Realty – Beverly Hills Brokerage for $4,195,000.
The Rex Lotery home on Maytor Place sold recently. Located on one of Trousdale Estates’ highest ridges, the striking contemporary home was purchased by a New York-based fashion designer as his Hollywood pied-a-terre for $4,100,000.
Another Trousdale Estates property was purchased with a unique provenance: Designed by A. Quincy Jones, this home located on Carla Ridge was once owned by World War II hero General Omar Bradley. It’s also noteworthy for being one of five original “model” homes built in Trousdale Estates.
Whether you’re looking to “Live Above It All” or simply desire a home with a style that’s “Over the Top,” Trousdale Estates is the ultimate address in Southern California. Story Courtesy of the Wall Street Journal – original article here.
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