Monday, May 19, 2008

Introducing the Buddy Ebsen Museum

SELLER: Buddy Ebsen's wife and widow
LOCATION: Via Horquilla, Palos Verdes Estates, CA
PRICE: $3,240,000
SIZE: 4,398 square feet, 4 bedrooms, 3.5 bathrooms
DESCRIPTION: ...This elegant home features a magnificent living room complete with Palladian windows to enjoy the panoramic views, high ceiling and fireplace. The adjacent formal dining room is perfect for entertaining. The large kitchen with adjoining breakfast room opens to a private patio. The stunning library fatures a coffered ceiling, fireplace and wonderful views. The dramatic entry staircase leads you upstiars to 2 large bedroom suites, each with its own bathroom. The fourth bedroom, located on the entry level is currently being used as an artist's retreat.

YOUR MAMAS NOTES: About a week ago, before our computer drama and before we lost an entire day in transit to the left coast, a little birdie we'll call Sammy the Songbird whispered in Your Mama's big fat ear that the Palos Verdes Estates home owned by old skool actor Buddy Ebsen has been foisted on to the market by his third wife and widow Dorothy Knott (Mister Ebsen passed on to the big movie set in the sky in 2003). All the children who are older than dirt and/or appreciate classic films and television programs will recall that Mister Ebsen skillfully played Doc Golightly in Breakfast at Tiffany's and that his best known acting gig was as the lovable oil rich ignoramus Jed Clampett on the soo-blime and still funny television series The Beverly Hillbillies. But, of course, who could ever forget Mister Ebsen in his last big role working his geriatric stuff as the milk obsessed gum shoe Barnaby Jones back in the 1970s? Certainly not Your Mama.

Being that we're unhealthily attracted to the prurient and out of the ordinary behaviors of others, what Your Mama finds most interesting about Mister Buddy Ebsen is that he fathered eight children. Eight! Including one born while he was in his seventies. Imagine that children. Your Mama can't imagine why anyone with more than 50 candles on their birthday cake would want a damn infant causing a ruckus while they sat down to watch the legendary Laurence Welk on the boob toob, but hunnies, we are none the less impressed with Mister Ebsen's pre-Viagra virility.

Anyhoo, we're here to talk about real estate, so let's get down to the bizness at hand. Property records show that Mister Ebsen purchased this 4,398 square foot house in December of 1985 for $950,000, and from the look of things, anyone who lives here better enjoy working those calf and boo-tox muscles because there are enough stairs and steep slopes on this property to give Your Mama's little heart an attack just thinking about trying to get from the street all the way up to the damn bedrooms. We can only hope that someone thought to install a damn elevator for the less physically fit.

Listing information indicates that there are three bedroom suites on the top floor and a fourth bedroom on the main level that is used as an "artist's retreat." This was probably the maid's room before people figured it was safer and more private to have the staff live out of the house.

While the view from the house looks long and spectacular, we are less than impressed with the interior day-core. We regret to inform The Widow Ebsen that there is precious little we'd keep in the house besides that crazy white grand piano in the living room which is so damn Liberace it's brilliant. For some unknown reason we're also digging the doors that enclose the book shelves in the library, so we'd prolly leave those too. Maybe. Sorry Buddy Ebsen luvin' people, as far as Your Mama is concerned, everything else can be tossed over the ornate balustrade and into a dumpster.

Although we're sure The Widow Ebsen loves her kitchen and we can appreciate the large work island and the nice view out the window over the sink, Your Mama thinks a serious gut job will be required and insisted upon by the new owner. Additionally, the little white chandelier is too tiny for the space and those balloon drapes are so damn dee-pressing they are making Your Mama's head hurt even more than last night's prodigious pitcher of gin and tonics. All the children please take note of Your Mama's interior day-core rule # 364: Balloon drapes are only appropriate for funeral homes and certain Park Avenue apartments inhabited by ladees old enough, rich enough and lacquer-haired enough to be called "doyennes."

Our last bone of contention with this property is the backyard...or rather the lack of one. Listen puppies, to each his or her own when it comes to backyards, but if Your Mama was spending three million or more clams to live down in Palos Verdes Estates (which, quite frankly, we would never do), we would certainly require a backyard big enough for a heated swimming pool, a shaded and private terrace for al fresco massages from the always scantily clad Sven the Swedish ma-sewer, and a small patch of green grass for our long bodied bitches Linda and Beverly to frolic and sunbathe.

Palos Verdes has always been a bit of a residential mystery to Your Mama, but as it turns out, we're actually headed down to that neck of the Los Angeles woods tomorrow to have a look-see at the ocean view manse of a ladee ack-tress/moe-dell who is probably most famous for taking her clothes off in Playboy than anything else. Should be fun.

Your Mama read that Mister Ebsen once owned a 36 acre ranch somewhere up in the Santa Monica Mountains, but Your Mama didn't find any record of such a thing. Perhaps the fine folks at Movieland Directory can sort that out and let us know?

Now children, please allow Your Mama to have a wee morning nap as we've been up since the crack of dawn and we have to be on top of our game in a few hours when we meet a sharp and sassy gal pal for lunch at the commissary of some movie studio or other.

113 comments:

StPaulSnowman said...

I find nothing remotely interesting or appealing about this house and am only commenting to express my astonishment that Mama got through her remarks without a single reference to the ceement pond or Miss Hathaway..........amazing!

Anonymous said...

I have great respect for Buddy E and eons ago, P.V. was a hot place to live. Hmmm... which actress/model could it possibly be???

Anonymous said...

probably someone better looking than Kelly Osborne

eddie from pdx said...

first off... this house is so blah. Nothing really interesting about it... although I do kind of dig the rooftop deck above the garage but that is it.

And is it on a golf course?

And mama is gettin' all famous. I wonder if this visit to the ladee actress/model is for a TV show. Didn't mama announce awhile back that she was gettin' her own TV show?

Or did I just dream that?

Anonymous said...

Mama, please let us know how you lunch with Karen Black went.

ed from westwood said...

Palos Verdes is very old old money, I am very sure that they will get their asking price for it fast.

Kathy throwing her $2 in. said...

I don't understand how these huge houses can have such tiny kitchens. Granted, I've seen smaller, but for that price I want a much bigger kitchen.
Plus those crosses on the windows have got to GO. Is the area infested with vampires? Who knows? Maybe they are there for a reason.

Parker said...

I have nothing nice to say about the exterior of this house. I really do think it's quite hideous and reminds me of McMansions that people are squeezing onto small properties these days. I do, however, always appreciate a library. As for location, the views from PV are nice, but I could never be that isolated from the rest of L.A.

Anonymous said...

I'm convinced that Miss Hathaway would have had her way with Jethro a time or 2 or 3 or 4 or 5 if he wasn't so utterly lost in space.

lil' gay boy said...

This house is so bland that I'm speechless (how's that for a change?)

;-)

My only observation is: if Mr. Ebsen was so tall, then why are all the "artworks" hung so low on the walls? Was the 3rd Mrs. Ebsen vertically challenged?

pch said...

At least from these shots, I don't think the exterior is a lost cause. It has the McMansion finish, to be sure, and some clunky proportions, but if you re-tool the materials, re-size windows, etc. you could probably get a fairly decent look out of this. For real.

Funny to hear everyone calling it PV. I knew a girl in London who came from Palos Verdes, and she ran around talking about "PV" like everyone in the world knew what that meant. When in fact hardly anyone in Los Angeles knows what it means. Anyway, Palos Verdes is nice enough, but everything in the South Bay feels like such a schlep.

Ebsen also owned a groovy '60s house on Balboa Island -- 530 S Bayfront -- turquoise paint, brown trim, orange front door. His ex-wife Nancy got it in the divorce and still lives there.

ed from westwood said...

Now I thought they would get 4MM for it until I saw this

http://tinyurl.com/5cam2l

It is still overpriced.

She should go to the bank and ask them what they think she can get for it and price it accordingly.

Realtors and appraisers are still out to lunch on realistic pricing.

Viva! said...

It's not hideous or a lost cause...in fact with a bit of work and some tropical landscaping the house could work. Granted, the lack of a pool is unforgivable...but the views are nice.

And I happen to like that Palos Verdes is a bit isolated from the rest of LA. That's the point.

ed from westwood said...

Well I should say most realtors and appraisers.

it was bought in 1985 for 950k and considering that he did not overpay for it back then it should be worth 2MM ? or a little less ? after all it is still palos verdes the conservative town of CEO's, Bankers

It also needs a remodel ?

I would put it up for 950k and call it a day, I would not be surprised if that is what the bank is going to say.

Brooklawn Dr. said...

It is a quiet, comfortable home for an elderly couple. Stop hating. Consider who was living there. It is NOT garish and showey like a RAP star house or some "look at me, I'm so wonderful" Beverly Park monstrosity.

It is a simple, elegant, subdued home for an aging and beloved celebrity from the past.

Anonymous said...

Well first of all this house has been on the market for over three months, and it first came out at $3.4 million. Its a large house with a great, but standard, PVE view that has far less architectural significance than many of the other PVE homes. It sits across the street from PV Country Club which guarantees nice open views, but the problem is that it has no property to speak of and the main draw to live in PV versus the rest of the South Bay is you can get more land for your millions.

I think the property is still a tad overpriced, not because the market is falling as everyone loves to scream, but because its a large house with no land that needs several hundred thousand dollars of renovation work to bring it up to the standards of comparable PV homes. In addition, because it sits back in the hill from the coast, the house just has ocean views rather than coastline views.

I predict it eventually sells for $2.8 million-ish.

StPaulSnowman said...

LGB; how insightful of you to notice the low slung art work! Now I understand the marked slouch Mr. Ebsen had in his later years. All those years of dancing apparently did little to maintain his disc spaces.

jimmyboy said...

Average Ed, I read the article you directed us to. It says home prices in PVE have increased by 18% from last year.

Do you own any decent property that I could purchase for 1985 prices? (double wides do not count as decent property)

Coreigh said...

Ed from Westwood....

You are so full of it. You must be such a loser in real life. Clearly, in real life you have no respect and no one gives a shit about your opinion which is why you feel the need to comment on every single one of Mama's post, several times with these pea-brained idiot opinions that make you feel better about your pathetic self thinking people are "hearing" you and your opinion matters for something now... but realistically... everyone hates you, your opinion still doesn't matter and you need to go pour yourself a stiff Gin and Tonic with a little bit of arsenic tonight.. hell.. try a lot of arsenic.

Coreigh said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
eddie (not Ed, thank you) from pdx. said...

I agree with the people who said that a comment moderator wouldn't be such a bad thing.... stick to the property in the post.

On the flip side... it's a slippery slope when you start censoring these things.

changing subjects: LGB, great catch on the art work being hung really low. Even if the widow Ebsen was short, their is no excuse for the mantel paintings not being hung properly. The only excuse I can think of is the light on the sail boat painting is not installed into the wall and they didn't want to show the cord dangling down the wall.

I did find one thing I like about this house... The chandeler in the kitchen. It so doesn't go with the dark wood, which is kind of fabulous. Very Liberace, like the grand piano.

sandpiper said...

The lines of this home area far more impressive from the air. Plug in "www.virtualglobetrotter.com" and enter his name in the search box. Room for a pool it seems, too.
I also need to skip past the decor, incl. window treatments.

Hi Stpaulsnowman, re the art over fireplace; it's leaning for whatever reason and the lamping is attached to the backside of frame. My rule of thumb has always been that artwork/decorative mirrors should be mounted with consideration to balance of the surrounding elements; and absolutely less to do with height of the tallest inhabitant (wives tale). So shoot me. lol. :)

Anonymous said...

Boring ass house.

Couldn't care less about the price.

Coreigh...go take a Xanax.

You must be a really "big" girl to be so angry all the time.

lil' gay boy said...

It took me a while to figure out why the scale of the rooms seemed off; hanging art is always tricky, trying to balance the optimal viewing angle while preserving the symmetry of the wall it is displayed on.

As for the exterior, the more I look at it the less I like it; the approach facade is much more suited to the rear of a house; from say, a service court.

As a main entrance, it's a decided flop. Three gargantuan garage doors and a secreted entry stair do not scream "Welcome!" But the fenestration does relieve an otherwise severe face to the world.

Anonymous said...

Actually, If you move out all the furniture and throw on a new countertop and sink--it would be nice--for the type of home it is. Nice ceilings etc. Light fixtures are cheap. Get over thinking that this house will go back to 2 mil. Really, Agents price just over to satisfy homeowners but not a lot--they do want to sell the house. And, the markets aren't crashing in decent LA neighborhoods. Most houses I look at in the 1-1.5 range for purchase were like half that price in 2001-3. They aren't going down that much--only in bullsh*t areas with big commutes. 3L's--remember. I wish the sky were falling--people say "we are back to 2004 prices etc. in LA--not seeing it in decent areas here-and I check everyday.

Still playing nice in West Hollywood, Mama's black sheep.

sandpiper said...

Thanks Little Buddy,
I was trying to be sensitive about the picture hanging critique. Glad you took my balancing theory well.
:)

Anonymous said...

Palos Verdes is not old money. It is just money. PV has a large asian community who bought in the 80's and 90's. I lived and went to school there. it's a lovely place to live but isolated- which is good or bad depending on what you like. It's also very diverse in terms of homes- from very small to huge mansions. some of the neighborhoods are a little crummy while others are post card perfect and have strict rules about what can and can't be done to a home. I would live there in a second except for it's freeway access.

StPaulSnowman said...

Sandpiper; Thanks for the decorating/display tip. I learned something from your comment. It is particularly easy to see what you mean in this house since there is not much else going on in the rooms illustrated. Our old house has particularly large wall spaces and balance is often a tricky problem. This is nowhere so challenging as on a large wall flanking our open staircase.......I don't know if I will ever figure that one out. Thanks again

Alessandra said...

If only the photographer hadn't been hitting the gin so hard...the photos are all askew and it's driving me nuts.

And the kitchen should be torched. All that dark wood and the butcher block (unless it is stone and I'm just blind...even so, horrid) counter with the white knobs and the balloon curtains? Gah!

Anonymous said...

Anonymous at 5:48 hit the nail on the head with the description of PVE. Most people who live there love it; the people who don't live there are happy they don't. Freeway access is a minimum 20 minute hike. I lived there for a year in the early 90's and have never been more bored in my entire life. It's a great place to raise a family, if you want to live in a neighborhood with limited diversity (Asian and white) and a lot of peer pressure (academic, social, fiscal). It's not for everyone.

ed from westwood said...

jimmyboy

Where does it say that Palos Verdes went up 18 percent ?

"Median sale prices fell by 13% in Beverly Hills in April, compared with the same month last year. Rancho Palos Verdes dropped 18% over the same period, while Newport Beach's 92660 ZIP Code took a 34% hit, according to DataQuick Information Systems."

And Coreigh

Sorry you feel that way,

is it that bad for you ?


Lucky for me I bought real estate in the 80's and sat on the sidelines during this fabricated gold rush.

What is shocking to me is that a majority of the nations wealth is now in the pockets of mozillio, banks, and other wealthy individuals

This could go down in history books as the biggest con ever pulled on the common man.

Former middle class, upper class home owners, flippers now living in their SUV's in the parking lots of the same cities they use to have house ownership ?

How is that for American ownership ?

Quite Contrary said...

Ed: this site is about gawking over celebrity real estate and NOT a site dedicated to you and your alleged financial prowess and condescending real estate observations. Could you take you and your boasting and put it on a site that cares? I'm sure blogspot.com could set one up for you. Let us know where it is so we can avoid it.

Oh yes, and could you please take Average Joe with you?

Thanks.

jimmyboy said...

Ed from page 2 of the article:

Although home values declined 18% in Rancho Palos Verdes, for example, homes in the adjoining 90274 ZIP Code (which includes Palos Verdes Estates, Rolling Hills Estates and Rolling Hills) saw their values rise by the same percentage.

In Newport Beach, the coastal 92663 ZIP Code saw an April price increase of 66%, to $2.49 million, DataQuick said.

You should try reading and reporting the whole thing.

ed from westwood said...

jimmyboy

I said, palos verdes, not rolling hills, not newport beach, again palos verdes
which I believe is where this mansion is at.

I would say it is like comparing 90046 and 90069 they are next to each other but 90069 has a stronger resilience than 90046.

Courtney you have to admit these properties are still way over priced, so watch for a major sales increase as they start coming down
little by little in price in LA at least.

As far as my own blog ? way to busy for that

avg joe ? he marches to the beat of his own drum.

ciao

ed from westwood said...

Actually a better analogy would be comparing 90046 or 90069 to 90210 or 90077

Anonymous said...

ed: why the fuck do no celebrities live in Westwood "Mr know it all"?

bentley said...

I, too, dig the built-ins and doors in the library.

Alessandra, no shit about that kitchen!

$2 Kathy - it has been argued here that rich people neither cook in nor care about their kitchens, and they have bars and hence bar fridges for the gin, so they rarely enter the kitchen anyway. I beg to differ, but I guess I'm alone on that one.

ed from westwood said...

anon 7 08am

actually they do, up and down wilshire.

I even have them for neighbors

so what who cares but I am curious

why do you ask ?

Anonymous said...

Would it be asking too much for those of you who want to bicker, fight, and insult each other over who knows real estate 'better' to open a yahoo chat room or something for that type of thing? I'm new here and enjoy the commentary related to Mama's posts, but the highjacking by those negative others is a downer for the rest of us, thank you.

lil' gay boy said...

Alessandra,

Thanks for your comment on the kitchen - my sentiments exactly . . .

But the last time I suggested such a move, the board howled and howled:

"Don't you know how painful it is for everyone who lost a house in the brush fires???"

Guess Average Ho and Co. have diverted them for now.

;-)

jimmyboy said...

Ed, this "mansion" is in Palos Verdes Estates - zip code 90274. The article states that zip code 90274 went up 18%. Rancho Palos Verdes went down 18%. This house is not in Rancho Palos Verdes.

In your quote you referenced Newport Beach as well as Beverly Hills. If you don't care about Newport Beach why did you include it in your quote?

Please next time get your facts straight before you post otherwise you prove yourself to be a fool.

Anonymous said...

jimmyboy, I beg you to ignore ed-joe from asswood.

Everyone here is really trying to ignore "it".

If you feed him, he comes back. If you ignore him, Mama's hard work is not insulted.

ed from westwood said...

Jimmyboy

I stand corrected

my apologies

eddie from pdx said...

Did anyone else notice that Mama's date/time stamp is off by a day?

Chris said...

1. The "living room" looks faux elegant with those hideous vulgar paintings featured as if they were Constables, or somethin'. I am sure they ain't.

2. I would never want to live in a house owned by a guy so nasty that he tried to undermine his co-star Nancy Kulp when she ran for political office by going out of his way to do ads dissing her. Evil man.

lil' gay boy said...

Shhh, Eddie.

Mama's date & time stamp isn't off, she's still sleeping . . .

Don't wake her or she'll get the wooden spoon out . . .

sandpiper said...

Alessandra,
The pics are askew? ASKEW?
We'll buckle up, cause after the photog knocked off the gin and cooking sherry, he attempted to video.

lil' gay boy said...

Sandpiper,

Watching those videos gives one the impression of just having stepped off a tiny schooner after being at sea for a year . . .

. . . an has all the charm of a crime scene recording.

jimmyboy said...

In case anyone is interested, here is/was a lovely estate.

http://www.ohekacastle.com

sandpiper said...

Little Buddy,

Oh, I get it. Land legs. haha.

I think his zoom setting was stuck. Like looking through a keyhole. lol

StPaulSnowman said...

Thanks for the tip, Jimmy. Oheka Castle is beautifully profiled in the A&E America's Castles series.....so glad it has been preserved.

Anonymous said...

where r u u lazy bitch

-ur wurst nighmare

lil' gay boy said...

Oh Jimmyboy,

What you could have started if I wasn't in the midst of a gall bladder attack -*whimper* . . .

Needless to say, Oheka (Otto H. Kahn's estate, hence the name), has the distinction of being the 2nd largest private home in America, and sits on the highest point of land on Long Island (the highest natural point of land is in Roslyn, at the site of the former Harbor Hill, the Mackay Estate. Mr. Kahn spend two years building up his site so it would be higher than Mackay's in a stunning display of conspicuous consumption.)

Despite the cold entry hall, the rest of this immense house is really quite warm and friendly (the site of several "Designer Showcases").

After standing abandoned for a number of years, it changed hands several times; a military school, a rest home for NYC sanitation workers, an attempt to cut it up into 27 condos, and now a catering facility.)

Gary Melius bought it, sold it to a Japanese investor, and bought it back (and made money doing so). He still hopes to convert it into private residences, and is a nice guy in person to boot.

Oh dear, I did go on anyway, didn't I?

Oops.

;-)

StPaulSnowman said...

LGB........your lasst post is the absolute essence of what I appreciate in this site. Informed, inside information about great works in residential architecture. Thank you..........it distracted me from my worries about Mama. Was there a sale somewhere or what? This isn't like here and I am worried.

lil' gay boy said...

Attack over . . . for now. Thanks StPaulSnowman!

BTW, Mama's on the left coast, probably being wined & dined by TV execs who will hopefully put her on the air. Since she's got a new Mac laptop (the poor dear dropped her old one and shattered the screen), there may not have been time for her to set it up for remote access before she jetted west.

BTW, Otto Kahn decided to build the estate on LI when he tired of the anti-Semitism of his New Jersey manse (Cedar Court, in Morristown) which burned to the ground; hence Oheka was constructed of steel-framed concrete.

Most people will recognize the house from an aerial shot of it that was used as the opening sequence of "Xanadu" in Citizen Kane.

jimmyboy said...

I think his Santa Monica Mountain ranch was on Liberty Canyon in Agoura Hills.

StPaulSnowman said...

Wait a minute! I have been under the impression that Mama was based in California. Am I mistaken? Could she possibly be a New Yorker? I am disoriented.
LGB- are the interior details of Oheka intact? I saw Rosecliff in Newport a few weekends ago. It is used mostly for weddings now...........and it looks like it.

eddie from pdx said...

I've always thought she lived in the NYC.... remember she lives in an apartment that some actress used to live in (Christina Ricci?)

StPaulSnowman said...

Yeah but I thought she talked about the longbodies frolicking in the California sun. Enigmama!

Alessandra said...

Our Mama is bi-coastal, kittens.

I'm sorry for your bilious attack, LGB.

Anonymous said...

It's my understanding that Mama lives in NYC. Mama mentioned awhile back that Tim Gunn of Project Runway fame had purchased a unit in the same building she lives in.

Snowman, I've seen Mama mention the longbodies frolicking in Southampton's sun, but don't recall California.

StPaulSnowman said...

I can't believe how wrong I was. The bicoastal thing really threw me for a loop. Life is short and I need to know where this dolly lives. I love the way her blog profile states it's none of our beeswax who she is or where she lives. I am seeing here as Dame Edna after Jenny Craig. If she is in NYC, I sure hope there is an elevator....stairs are really tough on dachshunds.
LGB....too bad the good Dr. Cooter isn't a general surgeon...your sassy little gallbag would be in the bucket by now. I hope it was fried food and not Buddy's house that precipitated your recent colic.........I am glad you're better!

Anonymous said...

Snowman, I think Mama just likes to talk like that.. in her Mama character so to speak. Mama has already revealed who 'she' is to us, and where she's at ;)

StPaulSnowman said...

Wreck my night!......Mama is only a character? I am eviscerated. I have been foully deceived. Next you people will tell me she is not a phenotypic female and that Santa has gone the way of Brooke Astor. Talk about "slings and arrows" zjeesh!

StPaulSnowman said...

Anonymous 7:33 I must have missed the "reveal" party. Am I the only one who didn't know where her home base is? This is the Truman Show all over again.

Anonymous said...

Mama grew up in Southern California but now makes her home in New York.

lil' gay boy said...

Yes, Snowman, the interiors of Oheka are largely intact, thanks largely to the restorative efforts of Gary Melius, who combed the Island to recover stolen fragments from the mansion, as well as commissioned replacements for lost items. He useless with gallbags and other body parts, however.

;-)

As for Mama, the only thing "bi" about her is coastal . . . she and Dr. Cooter seem to share at least 3 domiciles, (the NYC apt., the Hamptons farmhouse, and the CA residence, although that may be either a pied a terre or family home) and are of a similar "persuasion" as myself . . . not telling tales out of school, chilruns.

that girl said...

stpaulsnowman -
Personally, I always knew Mama was an attractive gay man. How else could she be so witty, so charming, so bitchy? But like you, I too always thought she lived in L.A. She seems to know so much about the area!

While we do hear about the occasional NYC townhouse or coop, this blog is really about lala land in all its glory, isn't it? That's what keeps me going . . .

- Also from freezing cold stpaul - slightly warmer now in chicago

StPaulSnowman said...

that girl; thanks for the words. It is perfect spring in St. Paul now.....prima vera! Of course everyone here puts on shorts the first day the temperature is above forty. I feel sorry for our California siblings with their perfect weather, they miss the true joy of spring.
LGB; I am assuming that by "same persuasion" you mean architecture and design inclined. After reading what you have written, I hope to visit Oheka and the Jay Gould manse before too long. It is always good to hear from someone who knows the house. After all my misconceptions about Mama, there is one other question I have. My wife and I have wirehaired dachshunds. I have assumed that Mama's dogs were dachshunds.............now I am wondering if Linda and Beverly are, in fact, ferrets.

Alessandra said...

Our Mama would never have ferrets. They are illegal in CA. ;)

Anonymous said...

But I thought she didn't live in New York. Besides, if she smokes dope on her balcony, she won't care about some California anti-ferret law. If ferrets are outlawed, how do you explain David Hyde Pierce......isn't he in California?

Anonymous said...

Mama lives in Chelsea ... Geez, does anyone pay any god damn attention!

Mama where are you? - I've checked back like 8 times & no updates!

bentley said...

This is killing me :) I'm not if it's my feverish delirium, but I can't stop laughing at how well Mama has remained so enigmatic to some.

lil' gay boy said...

Anon 5:02,

Nice shot!

;-)

Snowman,

The Gould estate (encompassed by the Sands Point Preserve) consists of the main house, Hempstead House, and the equally large stone stables, Castle Gould (often confused for the name of the main house). The waterfront Casino is gone, but you can walk down to the shore and see the remains.

Originally built by robber baron Jay Gould (modeled somewhat after Kilkenny Castle) for his wife Katherine (an actress, one step below harlot in those days), he sold it to Guggenheim after she left him; he didn't even have to change the "G"s on the entry gates.

The house was taken over by the Navy in WWII, after Guggenheim's widow willed it to the government (she vacated the main house after constructing Mille Fleurs on another piece of the property - it is not open to the public and sits abandoned in an overgrown part of the preserve; it's largely intact due to one of those ubiquitous Designer Showcases a decade ago). The interiors of Hempstead House were preserved during the Navy's occupancy only because the walls & ceiling were covered with acoustical tiles; the ground floor solarium, main stair hall & sunroom are quite beautiful still, and the second floor contains Nassau County's collection of Wedgewood, one of the largest.

There is also a third house, Falaise, built on a bluff to the east of the estate, which Guggenheim gave to his son Daniel as a wedding present (he and his wife, Alicia Patterson, founded the newspaper Newsday in the living room there). It too is open for tours, but is separate from the preserve.

The Helen Keller School is also located on the grounds, just inside of the main gate, which is across the street from The Chimneys, the old Fleishmann (as in the margarine) estate, which is now privately owned by the Sands Point Jewish Center.

Just a little further west down Sands Point Road you'll find the remains of Beacon Towers, the Alva Vanderbilt Belmont estate that most scholars believe served as the model for Jay Gatsby's estate in The Great Gatsby.

Land's End stands across the harbor in Kings Point (Sands Point=East Egg, Kings Point=West Egg) and is on the market for $29M; a Stanford White structure on 13 acres, it was the model for Daisy Buchannan's house (F. Scott Fitzgerald lived nearby on Crescent Circle, I believe, in Great Neck when he wrote the novel - near Neysa McMein & Co. of the Algonquin Round Table, but that's a whole other story . . . )

*whew!*

So ends the history lesson for today.

;-)

Anonymous said...

Mama! we miss u... feed us some juicy real estate gossip... your chil'run are starving!

Alessandra said...

I always thought David Hyde Pierce resembled a meerkat more than a ferret. And ferrets are adorable but so very stinky...not to speak for Mama or anyone else, but it's hard to imagine keeping them and maintaining one's sanity.

Anonymous said...

A massive earthquake in LA will get rid of these silly prices and bring them back to early 1990's.

All these wrecked homes will be bulldozed and we won't have any celebrity house to talk about.

StPaulSnowman said...

LGB; Thanks for the prose tour. Now I will be making a pilgrimage for sure. It is interesting how many Gold Coast Mansions claim to be the model for Gatsby's home. We have some Summit Ave. Mansions here that are clearly represented in some of Fitzgerald's short stories. He felt St. Paul was too provincial for him and only returned, after his success, to have their daughter and borrow money from his old school chums and successful business acquaintances. Thanks again.

eddie from pdx said...

I know that Mama's long bodied bitches are weiner dogs, but for some reason in my minds eye I picture them as whippits.

Alessandra said...

Anon 8:19, not even going to address the vitriol in your comments. Just going to say from a pure supply and demand standpoint, a massive earthquake would make the houses that survive even more valuable. And don't worry about us, we've survived plenty of earthquakes, thank you.

Anonymous said...

http://youtube.com/watch?v=Vee7K7CbuOI

luke220 said...

Snowman, a neighbor of mine grew up at 1006 Summit. I guess there are tours of it now.

Anonymous said...

I am one of mama's newborns (well, aged about 12 weeks) and I have no idea of mama's true identity.

There have been posts alluded to her real persona? Will my sibling be so kind to direct this infant in her search of mama's identity?

WillLDS said...

I hate to do this to you LGB, but Land's End is actually here. This is Sand's Point, not King's Point. That's something I never understood. FSF took some creative liberty and used two houses on the same "point" and put them on different "points" (or eggs) from each other in the book.

Also, I do hope not to offend, but going back to my days living on King's Point, my friends and I had a running joke that Great Neck was called that because if it were called Great Head, all the gay guys would live there. I have to chuckle every time I think of your profile because I silently wonder if Glen is BGD's first name.

lil' gay boy said...

Willlds,

Thanks so much for the correction; (and the link - I love that pool; tucked into a subtle rise in the lot, you can barely see it from the house, preserving the waterview); tragic how memory fades as I age . . .

;-)

I've wandered those coast roads so much that I've lost my way with all the new development there. I haven't been there since Hoffstot Lane was, I think, the driveway to Land's End. (you can catch it in the sunset from Memorial Park in Sea Cliff, near to my home). I do remember when the property was larger and they put in that swimming pool as there was speculation about it being a helipad at the time, and an uproar by the neighbors. Turned out to be the roof of the pool house (do you recall when it went in?)

I remember trespassing in an ultra-contemporary with a barrel-vaulted living room being constructed at the time (at the end of Vanderbilt Drive) when all those other houses were still on the drawing board). The entire second floor was devoted to the master bedroom suite (something Mama would advocate). From there I headed over to Land's End to photograph it; it seemed deserted at the time.

That particular neighborhood is a good pastiche of the best and worst of Long Island architecture, from old-school gems to vulgar McMansions.

BTW, since you lived in the area, do you remember what the property was originally called? The grey cells are kicking up a clouded memory having something to do with one of the many sites where Captain Kidd buried treasure . . . so many of them, LI would be a giant sink hole (some would argue it is) should anyone have searched for them all . . .

Never fear to offend; we're thick-skinned enough to endure you-know-who. BGD's first name is Miguel, hardly colonial or Native American enough for the North Shore.

eddie from pdx said...

LGB - what does BGD stand for (all I can think is Big Gay Daddy... which wouldn't be a bad thing)

fairfield girl said...

lol eddie
and yes now that you said that I want to know as well...

Anonymous said...

9:03,
check out 8:47

Parker said...

lgb, is architecture something you're into purely as a hobby, or are you involved in the business in some way? You always have pertinent in-depth comments that go beyond a layman's opinion.

bentley said...

Fantastic! That's what I always assumed BGD stood for, too. I'm dying to know.

Shep said...

9:03,
You need to know the truth about your Mama's true identity. I dated Mama's crazy sister. Not "sister woman", the other one. I apologize in advance if someone else has already explained.

Mama's real name is Stella Kowalski, Dr. Kooter isn't a doctor. He's a factory worker named Stanley. They live in New Orleans. The puppies are dauchunds, but their names are really Eunice and Steve. Go figure.

Now, can we get back to celebrity real estate.

WillLDS said...

funny, I always thought Stanley and Stella Kowalski were from "Tennessee". Pun intended.

WillLDS said...

As for Mama's identity, go to the August 2007 thread called "Today is the day..." The comments explain it all

shep said...

willlds,
I thought the sister came from Tennessee, but traveled to New Orleans to impose on Mama Stella's hospitality?

Mama's not real free flowing with the details. lol.

Anonymous said...

A true lady has to have some mystery in her life.

Like where is she now?

I think she up and left the children on Buddy Ebsen's widow's doorstep so she could get rid of the "bad seed"!

lil' gay boy said...

Parker,

Although not "classically" trained, I did my design stint for my brother's construction company; I gave it up as a career choice when too many clients wanted to change my designs (the nerve of them!)

BTW BGD stands for Big Gay Decorator, although Daddy will do. He is classically trained in one of them, though . . .

Anonymous said...

The majic of it all is that our Mama is many things to all of us. All wonderful and intreging (spelling?) We get to see cool properties and hear fantastic stories about the owners. What more could a kid ask for. Let's not be the Bickersons while Mama is out making nice to the folks out west..

Oh yea I picture the dogs long, pointy noses, long tails with wisps of white hair trailing behind them furry but not too furry (I can't think of the name of the darn things)

Sandalwood....

StPaulSnowman said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
StPaulSnowman said...

How enjoyable the last thirty or so posts have been to read. No poison, little acid.....I guess Mama's absence has brought out some good in us. I still wish the old broad would surface. I know Mama is a guy, she probably lives somewhere, she may even be mean and not as wonderful as I would like to believe. The one thing I cannot accept, is that her partner's name is not Dr. Cooter. The name is perfect. It is at once, respectable, straightforward but also possibly a little salacious. I can only dream his first name is either Lyle or Neville.
LGB, thanks for all the entertaining posts you have left in this thread. You may well know the book, but a great favorite of mine is American Splendor about Horace Trumbauer. It is an amazing book to read as well as look at. Selfishly, I hope you have not yet discovered it.

eddie from pdx said...

OH where could the old broad be?

Must be lining something big up! Hopefully she'll return soon.

lil' gay boy said...

Sorry to disappoint, Snowman, but that book (along with the complete domestic works of Trumbauer) occupies a treasured spot on one of my numerous bookcases. Pity he did so little work on the Island, but most of it is still extant.

I did find the original name for Land's End in "Long Island's Country Houses & Their Architects" however; built in 1900 for M. D. Sloane, it was called Kidd's Rocks (a tad salacious, if you ask me) but was best known as the summer home of journalist Herbert Bayard Swope:

"I can't give you a sure-fire formula for success, but I can give you a formula for failure: try to please everybody all the time."

WillLDS said...

I knew I'd like you guys. I was just looking at the Trumbauer last night. I asked for it for Christmas and my wife gave it to me when we were with her family. She got mad when I spent the majority of Christmas day looking at the book and not socializing with her family.

I'm sure you have all found it, but there are some great photos of Whitemarsh Hall here.

How very sad.

StPaulSnowman said...

willds; Glad you like the book too. Extremely well written.....a joy to read. I recently visited the Elms and it is beautifully presented and preserved. See it if you get the chance. Trumbauer also worked his magic on Doris Duke's Rough Point which is also a great treat to visit. If you want a shock.........check out the price of the book on Amazon. It must be getting difficult to find.

Anonymous said...

Y’all talk about Palos Verdes like it’s in the middle of the desert or something… The fact is, people choose to live in Palos Verdes BECAUSE it’s away from the big city. It’s got one of the top rated school districts in the entire state, virtually no crime and while the rest of the city is coughing up a lung because of all the smog, the residents of Palos Verdes are enjoying the ocean breeze.

As for “squeezing McMansions onto small properties”, it’s quite the contrary in Palos Verdes Estates. You’re only allowed to build up to 30% lot coverage. Somehow I don’t think that’s the case on the Westside…

Don’t get me wrong, I like to go “into town” as much as anyone, but it’s a great place to VISIT! Do some shopping, have some dinner, people watch a little and drive back to the peace and quiet of the Peninsula.

As for the house itself, I have to agree with some of the statements. It should have more usable land, and needs to be updated throughout. But, my understanding is that they’ve been fielding offers in the $3M range, but can’t quite seem to seal the deal. So anyone who thinks you can buy it at $2M or so, I’ll take a couple…

sandpiper said...

willlds,
Great link. Wow! Very interesting. Lots of fascinating detail. Made me curious about their Palm Beach home, El Mirasol. Stumbled upon this article about a man that salvages treasures resulting from Mizner demolitions. It also includes a little background on El Mirasol's fate and that of Eva Stotesbury. Bummer.

Jim R. Benfer Jr. said...

There seems to be a little confusion about "PV" - this is the short nickname for PVP which is the Palos Verdes Peninsula. There are four cities and two zip codes - 90274 and 90275. The oldest city is Palos Verdes Estates which is where the Ebesen home is located and it is know as PVE and was founded in 1922. It has a French Riviera atmosphere with California Spanish hacienda influence and has a small charming downtown center just as you come into the city on the coast from Redondo Beach on Palos Verdes Drive.

The ranch style commities are Rolling Hills (RH) and Rolling Hills Estates (RHE) which were both incorporated in 1957. RH is a private gated community with only about 700 homes and 2000 residents and the minimum lot size is 1 acre. RHE is a larger city with about 8000 residents and a fairly extensive town center known as the Palos Verdes Peninsula Shopping area which has restaurants, stores, and offices.

PVE, RH, and RHE all share the original zip code of 90274 which was once the single zip code for all of PVP.

The fourth city is RPV (Rancho Palos Verdes) which was incorporated in 1979 when it essentially annexed most (but not all) of the other Los Angeles County unincoporated land on the Palos Verdes Peninsula. It was later assigned the zip code of 90275.

Most (but not all) of the houses in PVE are unique and custom. All of the houses in RH are custom and single story ranch style (2 stories are not allowed although some split levels below grade do exist due to the hill slopes) and all are painted white as that is the only color the Arts Commission will approve. Most (but not all) of the homes in RHE are custom and ranch style with lots of trees.

Many of the houses (but by no means all) in RPV are small old tract houses built in the late 1950s by the Zuckerman family and some other developers. There are also a number of gorgeous custom homes built over the years in RPV, but generally the "quality" of RPV is varied and it does not have a single unique look like the other 3 cities.

Those of us who have lived in PV for many decades wouldn't even consider living elsewhere and we have worked very hard to maintain "the hill" as a rural community as isolated from changes as possible. We even still have our original General Store in RHE at the north entrance to RH which hasn't changed a bit since the 1930s and you can still buy horse supplies and tie up your horse on the rail in the front. We also keep hitching posts for horses at our City Hall in RHE and in RH they do the same.

For more information on the PV area, www.HomeViews.us has overviews of the cities and links.

Jim R. Benfer Jr. said...

The spelling, of course, above on the Ebsen home should read "Ebsen" not "Ebesen" as inadvertently got posted via not so good "poofreading!"

Anonymous said...

^ Great post, Mr. Benfer. I'm a lifer here, too. It has many of the benefits you describe and yet I'm not crazyinlove with the place. The rural touches exist.. but to me, they're less abundant than say, Santa Ynez. The shopping at Penn Center, the Avenue and Deep Valley offer a good selection of current, even trendy stores.

In all the years the Ebsens lived here, I guess I jes didn't bump into them near the cement pond or anywhere else. While it's certainly better than most suburbs, the 25-minute trip to the 405 is kinda a drag. Thanks much for your post. (And that girl in London was right... we always say PV and laugh at the phonetically precise 'Pal-lowse Vair-deez' pronunciation!)

Love your scoops, Mama. You continue to top yourself here with photos and news... thanks.

Anonymous said...

And Mr. Ebsen also had a large, lovely bayfront home on Balboa Island facing the Pavillion back in the 70's and 1980's...have no idea, when or if he or his heirs ever sold that property. It had a turreted tower my father lovingly called "the martini tower" and once my friends and I had been drinking ourselves and asked Mr. Ebsen for something or other in a scavenger hunt...but we were rebuked. That property,on a large lot w/ a large boat dock would now fetch between 7 - 8 million. That's a lot of Hillbilly reruns!

Anonymous said...

Somebody above posted that Mrs. Ebsen #2 got the Balboa house.

Too bad you didn't get your scavenger help from Jed!!
I bet he was still a very cool neighbor... seemed like a great, laid-back guy.

scott davidson said...

What an interesting blog, introduced by a thought-provoking photo. The unusual wall painting of the dwellings is also a strangely modern interpretation. Something like this hieroglyphic view of a park by Swiss painter Paul Klee, http://EN.WahooArt.com/A55A04/w.nsf/OPRA/BRUE-8LT475.
The image can be seen at wahooart.com who can supply you with a canvas print of it.

Anonymous said...

Wow! Buddy Ebsen’s wife Nancy Wolcott shares the same common ancestor as the hero, “Uncle” Alan Burton Hall! Hall, an angel!

Anonymous said...

Wow! Buddy Ebsen’s secondwife Nancy Wolcott shares the same common ancestor as the hero, “Uncle” Alan Burton Hall! "Uncle" Hall, an angel! Best of all, Frank Cady is the cousin of Uncle Hall as well!