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Home of the Week

The vampire in the house next door

Bela Lugosi once owned a home in Outpost Estates, an enclave with a film industry pedigree and nice views to boot.

April 23, 2006|Ruth Ryon | Times Staff Writer

Outpost Estates, developed in the 1920s, is one of the early Hollywood neighborhoods that has, through the years, attracted residents from the entertainment industry.

Bela Lugosi, the actor who gained fame for his 1931 starring role in "Dracula," was among home buyers in the mid-1930s, according to the records of the Outpost Homeowners Assn. Frank Sinatra and Ava Gardner made their honeymoon home there in 1951. Ben Affleck once lived in the enclave too. Residents today include Felicity Huffman and William H. Macy, Charlize Theron, Salma Hayek, Ben Stiller and Marilu Henner.

Martha O'Driscoll, a blond actress known for starring roles in 1940s films including "Carnegie Hall," "My Heart Belongs to Daddy" and "House of Dracula," bought this home in 1947. She was also in many Abbott & Costello comedies.

O'Driscoll sold the property to a couple from England, who upgraded the Mediterranean-style house and sold it in the late '40s for $26,000.

The current owners recently finished another remodel, upgrading the electrical system, the plumbing and the roof. They also bolted the house to its foundation and installed limestone counters and walnut cabinetry.

Outpost Estates was one of several luxury-home subdivisions developed by Charles E. Toberman of the Hollywood Holding Co., which has been credited with developing the Roosevelt Hotel, Grauman's Chinese Theatre, El Capitan Theatre and the Max Factor Building. Toberman was called "Mr. Hollywood" for his many real estate projects there.

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About this house: The three-story Vista de la Maravilla, serviced by an elevator, is perched atop one of the most desirable streets in the subdivision. In seven years, only one house on Maravilla Drive has been sold. The street is popular for its views of downtown L.A. and its proximity to Franklin Avenue.

Asking price: $3,895,000

Size: There are four bedrooms and 3 1/2 bathrooms in 3,522 square feet.

Features: The home has easy access to scenic trails. Other features are a media room and a heated veranda, which has about 2,000 square feet of additional living space.

Where: Hollywood Hills, at 2260 Maravilla Drive, open today from 2 to 5 p.m.

Listing agent: Frank Bruno, Keller Williams Realty, Hollywood Hills, (310) 623-1425.

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To submit a candidate for Home of the Week, please send color interior and exterior photos on a CD with caption information and a detailed description of the house, including what makes the property unusual, to Ruth Ryon, Real Estate section, Los Angeles Times, 202 W. 1st St., Los Angeles, CA 90012. Questions may be sent to homeoftheweek@latimes.com.

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