The landmark Casa Romantica will get a face-lift and structural repairs with help from a $110,425 state grant.
The money will be used to repair terra cotta roof tiles, improve the building's electrical system and restore two historic murals painted by one of California's foremost muralists of the 1920s, Norman Kennedy.
The grant from the State Office of Historic Preservation's California Heritage Fund was a pleasant surprise, associate city planner Jim Pechous said.
"It was great news," he said. "I didn't expect it."
The San Clemente estate was one of five projects in the state selected by the Heritage Fund.
The other winners are: Fullerton Joint Union High School District Educational Foundation, $25,000; Mariposa County Economic Development Corp., $136,890; College of the Redwoods in Eureka, $114,000; and Center for Spanish Colonial Archeology in San Diego, $87,600.