1188 Hillcrest Avenue, Pasadena

 
8,559 Square Feet
Seven Bedrooms / Six Baths
30,060 Square Foot Lot
Year Built 1913

The Cordelia Culbertson House, designed in 1911 and completed in 1913, was the last major project jointly undertaken by Charles and Henry Greene. A departure from their earlier bungalow projects, a Euro-Asian style interprets the California Mission influence with a lighter, more open feel while retaining all of the Arts and Crafts quality, detail and design. An open U-shaped floor plan of nearly 8,600 square feet showcases the only residence that Greene and Greene undertook without budget limitations or style directives from their clients. Today the home has been restored to pristine condition. The restoration was performed to maximize preservation of the original Greene & Greene design and materials. The enclosed courtyard is as designed by the Greenes with covered loggia, wisteria and rose arbors, Grueby-tiled walkways and Pewabic tile fountain. The courtyard garden was professionally designed and landscaped to harmonize with the surrounding Greene & Greene structures and features raised beds for edible gardening.

Inside are an imposing entry, a grand traditional living room, an elegant formal dining room, a garden / sitting room, a large kitchen, breakfast room, pantry and separate butler’s pantry. The elaborate woodwork, columns and ceiling moldings are all painted as they were originally. The walls in these public rooms are covered in fabric as in 1913. Nearly all the lighting fixtures are the neoclassical originals from the Sterling Bronze Company of New York. The herring-bone patterned tiger oak floors have been preserved and restored. On the upper walls of the entry are the 5 paintings that Charles Greene painted for this space.

Leading from the public rooms is a wide gallery to the master bedroom with adjacent sitting area, enormous marble bath and large dressing room. There are two other large bedrooms each with en-suite baths (completely original with Greene and Greene cabinetry, period fixtures and original tile) and walk-in closets (also with Greene and Greene cabinetry). In addition, there are two smaller bedrooms (presently outfitted as his and her offices) which share a bath.

Down a dramatic stairway from the main level is a magnificent concert hall / ballroom, once a loggia, that the Greenes enclosed around 1919 for the second owner. Its stage, terrazzo floor, gilded chandeliers, marble medallion, medieval carved limestone lintel and Batchelder musician tiles were installed by the Greenes. This magnificent space offers myriad opportunities for family room, media / game room, studio, gym or office. Across from the ballroom is an additional suite with bedroom, another bedroom or sitting room, bath, three closets and additional separate entrance.

The signature Greene and Greene bungalow wood paneling is nowhere to be found here; instead, the interior surfaces were lavishly detailed: sculptured plaster, fabric wall-coverings and exotic marble predominate. More than 130 windows make this home uniquely light and airy. Likewise, the exterior has no shingle roof or siding, but rather a smoother gunite finish with a roof done in dark-green tiles, intermixed with occasional red and lighter green pieces evocative of a Chinese palace. This final Greene and Greene structure, so unlike any of their prior work, is indeed a special masterpiece.

Catherine "Tink" Cheney
International President's Premier
Luxury Property Specialist
Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage
388 S. Lake Avenue, Pasadena CA 91101
office: 626/356-8129
cell: 626/233-2938
tinkcheney@earthlink.net
CalBRE # 01173415
www.tinkcheney.com