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A Producer Gauges the Greenhouse Effect on His Work

November 15, 1998|Barbara Thornburg

In a place famous for ridiculously long commutes, TV producer Larry Sanitsky may have the shortest home-to-office trek around. "About 30 seconds," quips the producer, whose Beverly Hills office is a five-house walk down the hill. The office occupies one of a pair of greenhouses fashioned after those at Buckingham Palace and owned by actress Marion Davies in the mid-'20s when she lived nearby. In 1955, when Davies' property was sold, Sanitsky's neighbor, an avid gardener, purchased and moved both structures to their current site. A little more than a year ago, Sanitsky rented one of them to work in.

"It was all done up like a fussy English cottage--forest green walls, wicker furniture upholstered in floral chintz and sisal carpets on the floor," he recalls. But Sanitsky, an Emmy nominee and collector of modern art and mid-century furnishings, wanted a contemporary decor. He collaborated with interior and furniture designers William Emmerson and Eric Troop of Emmerson Troop in West Hollywood to remove the sisal and paint the original cement floors and windowed walls white. They paired refinished vintage industrial metal furnishings from the designers' store with Sanitsky's Paul Frankl sofa and Gilbert Rohde chairs to complement the steel-and-glass greenhouse. But the best part of working in this unconventional space (not counting the stroll home for lunch) may be the roof that Sanitsky cranks open for ventilation. "It's so nice to look up and see the sky," he says. "Occasionally birds or bees fly in. They join us for 10 minutes, then fly out."

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