Felix In Hollywood

A Blog for the Smart Set

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Patio Del Moro

As I have yet to win the lottery, I consider this post to be one of public service.  So dear readers: Attention!
The Patio Del Moro Apartments is for sale. 

Now this is really something to squawk about, since it's the first time this building has been on the market in 49 years.  The complex consists of seven mansionette apartments ranging in size from one bedroom (2), to two bedrooms (3), to three bedrooms (2).  It was built by the husband and wife team of  Arthur and Nina Zwebell in 1925.

As far as architecture goes, Arthur and Nina were self taught.  While Nina did graduate from Northwestern University, Arthur's formal education concluded with the eighth grade.  They arrived in LA in 1921 and went on a building spree.  The Patio Del Moro was their third project and was built in 1925 for a client who was a physician.  They were encouraged to think outside of the box and let themselves go, and the Spanish/Morrocan/Tunisian mash up was the result.  The Zwebells only built for about 16 years (there projects included a house for Harold Lloyd's mother built on his estate), but in that time they revolutionized the courtyard building that is so ubiquitous in old Hollywood.  Their hallmark was to make each unit in a complex unique and not cookie cutter impressions of the apartments that surrounded it.

The Hollywood pedigree that "The Patio" enjoys as far as residents are concerned are Joan Fontaine, Humphrey Bogart, Suzanne Pleshette and Drew Barrymore.  Actually there is a couple of others, but more on them in a minute.

I know the picture above doesn't really look like much, but let's get a little closer to the arched entry way.

Now it's gettin' a little better, huh.  Well let's walk through.
Say, what were those, the pearly gates, 'cause I think I'm in Heaven.  As the website says:

"Many have wondered what lies beyond the great street front fortress wall with their imaginations running wild. The reality is far from disappointing with its wall mounted reflecting pond, grand outdoor baroque fireplace, and Tunisian tower that reaches over three stories high. Upon passing through the large plank entry doors and through the tunneled entrance, you are transported instantly though time and into another place leaving contemporary life behind you."

The 3 story Tunisian pigeon tower.

Reflecting pool at night.

Oh yeah, I mentioned a couple other tennants.  Well it's like this, there is a spectacular 2 story - 3 bedroom unit:

And an equally spectacular 2 story - 2 bedroom unit:

That are adjoined by a secret service entrance and for a few years, Charlie Chaplin occupied one and Paulette Goddard had the other!

So, as I noted above, here is a golden opportunity to own a piece of history.  It is being offered at $6.4 million.  Oh, and if you buy it, how about slippin' a brother an apartment?  A one bedroom will be perfectly fine.


jason said...

oh my goodness....it's gorgeous!
I wanna live there.

normadesmond said...

you have perfect taste felix!

Rob said...

(If I ever win the lottery, consider yourself housed!)So cool, so noir almost, like something out of the The Big Sleep...

savannah said...

i would leave the plantation for one of those apartments, sugar! xoxoxox

MJ said...

I want to live there and move kabuki zero into the apartment directly across from me and you and Norma and Jason down the hall.

It would be like living in a sitcom.

We'd be like Mary and Rhoda and Phyllis et al.

FelixInHollywood said...


I was confused at first about your proposed line-up, as it is only 5 residents for 7 mansionettes, but then I realized that you must intend the other two units to be triple-stacked with houseboys.

jason said...

I like the idea
"Come and knock on our door", indeed.

MJ said...

I was thinking we could be the new "Golden Girls" too.

Sadly, Rue McClanahan just left us to join Bea Arthur and Estelle Getty.

FelixInHollywood said...

Well then we'll just open up one of the other apartments for Betty.

RIP Rue.

normadesmond said...

i'm getting my outfits ready, especially for lanai lounging.

FelixInHollywood said...

And will you be leied on the lanai?

normadesmond said...

one can only hope.

Stephen said...

You have no idea how amazing it is from the first view from the street. Can I live there & supervise the pool boy/gardening staff?