A small mid-century modern house in Hollywood | Richard Neutra
The Hailey Residence is a small house in the Hollywood Hills designed in 1959 by legendary modernist architect Richard Neutra. The home has either been very well maintained through the years or lovingly restored, appearing like a time capsule from the 50’s. It contains signature Neutra elements such as a wall of glass, low-slung built-in furniture and a large open masonry fireplace. Neutra had a reputation for paying close attention to his clients’ requirements and for producing very practical designs that combined aesthetic appeal with function and comfort.
The street side, sitting only a few steps from the roadway, is mostly closed with just a window for the kitchen and a line of clerestory windows that bring natural light into the home’s two bathrooms. The other side, with a view of the Hollywood Hills, is largely glass with a floor-to-ceiling glass wall running the entire length of the main living space. A large roof overhang provides shade for those south-facing windows. A similar roof cantilever at the front forms an open carport just off the street.
The interior appears quite a bit larger than its 1,129 ft2 (105 m2). That number includes a small office, wine cellar and laundry that were later built into the enclosed space below the house, so the original house was probably only about 1,000 ft2. The living room and dining room are open to each other but they are arranged in an L shape around the kitchen, creating distinct spaces for each. The glass wall opens the living space to the view, with one panel sliding back to provide access to the deck that runs the length of the living space. The inside is mostly finished in neutral wood tones interrupted by patches of bold color that bring to mind a Piet Mondrian painting. The floor is cork while overhead is a wood plank ceiling on exposed beams that are supported by the slender columns between the windows.
There is a large master bedroom and a den that could be converted to a bedroom if desired. The den can be opened to the living room by folding back an accordion-style retracting wall. Neutra visually expanded both the bedroom and the den by having their dividing wall stop about a foot shy of the exterior wall, as can be seen in the photo above. It is a technique we’ve seen before in the stable conversion by Sauquet Arquitectes and the modern ski cabin by Yiacouvakis Hamelin. In the Hailey Residence however, the gap is filled by a glass pane.
The house was recently on the market, giving the public a rare glimpse inside thanks to the photos taken by Cameron Carothers for listing agent Crosby Doe Associates. With Mid-Century Modernism becoming fashionable again in recent years, it sold for $950,000.
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