$19.95 Million Contemporary Mansion In Santa Monica, CA | Homes of the Rich – The #1 Real Estate Blog


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  • horselips

    I have grown sick and tired of the appellations “modern” and “contemporary,” truth is this aberrant architectural dys-style is now over a hundred years old, thus it has nothing whatsoever to do with any synonym for “nowadays.” It is best left to corporate, commercial and industrial applications, it’s utter and complete failure as a residential genre is obvious in anything and everything constructed in that vein. While we still build in a whole host of assorted classical and neo-classical styles, and will for centuries to come, because those forms were done right to begin with by people with profoundly good taste and a proper sense of proportions, I can see the day when this ‘modern’ crap is relegated to the landfill of architectural obsolescence.
    As for this pseudo-mansion, one look at the plain flat, undecorated, unembellished walls and ceilings reveals that precious little was invested in premium materials, and next to nothing spent on skilled craftsmanship. It could not possibly have cost more than a couple of million too build this place, and that’s being generous. If you think this P.O.S. along with a whole one third of one acre of Santa Monica is worth $20 million, then get out your checkbook…be my guest…caveat emptor…the last time this turkey actually sold, it was for just over $11 million. Suckers!

    • Barnabus Samuel

      OHHHHHKAY……….while I WISH you’d write how you REALLY feel about the modern genre, there is one inarguable fact that you’ve claimed for yourself. Your utter and complete ignorance of anything related to modern architecture and your categorical dismissal and decimation of ALL of it is, sorry, ludicrous through-and through. While I love the style in general and agree with you that seriously spare and “subtle” homes as this one come off as commercial and unengaging, I, at least will always regard ANY traditionally WELL designed and decorated home as beautiful, EVEN if it’s an utterly bleak early american design (and replace that with any other traditional style) that makes me sincerely wretch as this house does to you. Your all-knowing comments are mystifying to the point of laugh-ability and do not represent, in any way, even a amateurish appreciation & understanding of an architectural style that is, unequivocally, here to STAY.

      • horselips

        Thank you for your thoughtful reply to my rant. Now and then, I feel the need to do something to generate some comments or controversy, and this, at least, hooked you. It’s 1:30 AM and I should have gone to bed long ago.
        I think it would be much more honest, and much more accurate to call the ‘modern’ or ‘contemporary’ style something like “20th century” architecture. It used to be in the days of yore that constructing a proper mansion required the employment of highly paid and very highly skilled artists to sculpt, carve, panel, paint, and finish all the ornamentation that, when done right, allowed monumental rooms to stand on their own – no pictures or shocking, contrasting focal points needed. The high cost of such craftsmanship and premium materials insured that only the ‘best people’ need apply, if you were nouveau riche you had better be at least a robber baron, or corporate mogul.

        Then came modern architecture, and we entered the Age of Drywall & Marlite. Artists and artistry was replaced with flat painted panels, woodwork was reduced to straight grained highly polished veneers. Steel frames and cantilevers took the place of fluted columns and pilasters, cheap acrylic sheets sufficed to frame staircases. Even decor took a nosedive – elegant moldings, paneling and ceilings were dropped in favor of cleverly placed colored light bulbs and shadows. Objets d’art became a joke, as even the twigs of dead plants stuffed into vases was seen as sophisticated and avant garde. Anything and everything suddenly became “art.” High end architecture became thoroughly déclassé, all that was needed to build luxury housing was to enclose larger spaces. Tract houses were made of connected little boxes, mansions were made of connected bigger boxes. Construction costs dropped so low and mortgage rates became so favorable that even upper-middle and lower-upper class folks could own high end housing. There went the neighborhood, when those people moved in.
        If you like it, fine. Enjoy. But please laugh with me at the prices charged for modern mansions. I’d be more approving if trhe cost savings attendant with contemporary construction were passed on to buyers, but it’s just the opposite. Call it the Law of P.T. Barnum. Look at this posting. Twenty million dollars, American. Last sale was just over $11 million, and that was a bargain – only about 5 times the actual cost of construction.


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