YOU ARE HERE: LAT HomeCollections


A midcentury classic revived

Green touches accent lovingly restored post-and-beam trilevel

August 17, 2008|Diane Wedner | Times Staff Writer

Mr. Magoo, the nearsighted 1950s cartoon character, would have appreciated the open floor plan of this classic Midcentury Modern, if not the drop-dead view of Universal City and the east Valley from practically every room in the house.

Fortunately, producer and writer Leo Salkin, who wrote stories for the animated series and lived in the trilevel for many years, could take full advantage of the Buff, Straub and Hensman 1960s architecture, which maximized the outdoor vistas. The firm was known for its innovative indoor/outdoor designs and simplistic minimalism.

"I saw this house as a wonderful space to display art, and the building itself is art," said current owner and pop-art dealer Phil Selway. "I feel surrounded not only by the history of the architecture, but by the contemporary elements too."


To submit a candidate for Home of the Week, send high-resolution color photos with caption and credit information on a CD and a detailed description of the house to Diane Wedner, Real Estate, Los Angeles Times, 202 W. 1st St., L.A., CA 90012. Questions may be sent to


Begin text of infobox

A deck off every room

Location: Hollywood Hills area of Los Angeles

Asking price: $2,395,000

Last sales price: $1,109,000 (recorded on Nov. 21, 2007). The property was foreclosed on in spring 2007.

Size: This house has three bedrooms and 3 1/2 bathrooms in 2,816 square feet. The lot is 13,810 square feet.

Features: The kitchen comes with professional appliances and custom pantry; the master bath has a free-standing tub and radiant-heat floors; every room has deck access.

About this house: Selway, who wanted to return the distressed post-and-beam structure to pristine condition, began an extensive remodel a year ago. With designers Charles D'Attili and Rod Hammersly, he achieved it, while adding contemporary green components, such as recycled glass terrazzo flooring on the main level, cork flooring on the lower and upper levels, and biodegradable carpeting in the bedrooms. The kitchen cabinetry and appliance facings are made of sustainable zebra-grain wood. A rotating, wood-burning fireplace -- very Jetsons -- is suspended from the living room ceiling, providing warmth no matter where one moves. A wrap-around deck on the middle level offers breathtaking views, and a lower-level deck has a Jacuzzi.

Around the neighborhood: There were 225 single-family home sales in this 90068 ZIP Code between July 1, 2007, and June 30, 2008, according to DataQuick Information Systems. The median price was $1,155,000.

Listing agent: Bruce D. Bartkow, Coldwell Banker, (310) 887-0230



Estrella Mer

Location: La Jolla

Size: Six bedrooms and 7 1/2 baths in 8,563 square feet on a 13,198-square-foot lot

Published on: Sept. 10, 2006

Listed then for: $14,995,000

Sold for: $15 million on March 20, 2008


Ode to the '60s

Location: Los Feliz Oaks

Size: Four bedrooms and five baths in 4,545 square feet on a 9,190-square-foot lot

Published on: July 15, 2007

Listed then for: $3,395,000

Leasing today for: $15,500 per month


Rustic post-and-beam

Location: Silver Lake

Size: Three bedrooms and four baths in 3,300 square feet

Published on: March 16, 2008

Listed then for: $2.95 million

Sold for: $2.7 million on Aug. 5, 2008

-- Diane Wedner

Los Angeles Times Articles