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$1.8 Million Homes in California

This house, known as Gray Gables, was built in redwood as a private residence. It was later incorporated into the grounds of the Wissahickon Inn, once a stopping place for notables like Gloria Vanderbilt and Eleanor Roosevelt on their way to Palm Springs, 45 miles southeast. (Los Angeles is 66 miles west.) After falling into disrepair and almost being razed, the property was restored, beginning in 2016, as a family complex, with a rebuilt foundation, new mechanicals and antique and period reproduction details. It is in a historic district two miles south of the city center.

Size: 3,600 square feet (in the main house)

Price per square foot: $499

Indoors: A 2,000-square-foot veranda with intricate woodwork based on the original wraps around three sides of the main house. Inside are engineered hardwood floors (as well as sculpted carpet in the first-floor bedroom) and 10-foot ceilings in most rooms.

The living room has eight-foot-high casement windows with bronze bolts and a Victorian reproduction bronze globe chandelier and wall sconces. Down the hall is a dining room with an arched ceiling, acorn chandelier and Dutch door. It opens to an eat-in kitchen with marble-topped bead-board cabinets, a white subway tile backsplash, a cast-iron sink and cast-iron light fixtures. The six-burner gas cooktop and electric convection oven are set in a reproduction antique stove.

The first-floor bedroom suite includes a Victorian chandelier suspended from an 11-foot ceiling and a large closet with custom shelves. The private bathroom, with its open shower, is ADA-compliant.

The original staircase has been stained to match the flooring. Decorated with globe and acorn finials, it is lit by a vintage pendant lamp.

The three upstairs bedrooms include a master suite with cathedral windows offering mountain views and a bathroom with a penny-round-tiled shower, a toilet closet with a bidet and a reproduction Victorian vanity with a double sink and an antique mirror. There is also a guest suite, a bedroom with a gable window, an office with an industrial pendant light and a hall bathroom with a claw-foot tub and an industrial pipe light fixture with Edison bulbs. The second floor contains a laundry room with a gas-dryer hookup, as well.

A second unit of about 1,700 square feet with a private entrance occupies the basement. It has three bedrooms, three and a half bathrooms, a living room with French doors that open to a front patio and a kitchen with white Shaker cabinets and granite countertops.

Also on the property are a two-bedroom, two-bathroom carriage house that is approximately 1,100 square feet on two floors and an 800-square-foot cottage with one bedroom and one bathroom.

Outdoor space: Wrought-iron fencing encircles the property and incorporates an electric driveway gate. The grounds are planted with roses, bougainvillea, cypress, lavender bushes and orange, apricot and loquat trees. There are three notable mature specimen trees: a live oak, a pine and a palm. The yard includes statuary and a bocce court.

Taxes: $22,494

Contact: Kristin Staton or David Critchlow, Kristin and David Real Estate Group, Century 21 Lois Lauer, 909-806-0406 or 909-806-0407; kristinanddavid.com


From the front porch and upper floor of this house on Portrero Hill, you can see downtown San Francisco and the bay. Across the road is a park with a baseball field, playground and recreation center. Schools, shops, restaurants, breweries and groceries are in the immediate neighborhood, as are train and bus service to downtown. Routes 101 to the west and 280 to the east facilitate commuting to Silicon Valley.

Size: 1,457 square feet

Price per square foot: $1,232

Indoors: The main level has hardwood floors and shiplap-paneled walls and ceiling. On the right side, as you face the back, is a living room with a bay window and built-in bookshelves, followed by an open dining area. Both rooms (and the rest of the home) have been freshly painted and include new lighting.

Immediately to the left is a guest bedroom. Beyond it are a staircase (a walk-in closet built under the stairs serves as a pantry) and a U-shaped kitchen with grooved cabinets and white-tile countertops and backsplashes. Finally, there is a room leading out to the back that could be used as a study, guest quarters or music room.

The two upstairs bedrooms include a guest room facing front and a master with French doors opening to a private balcony overlooking the backyard. The single bathroom is on the main floor and has wood-paneled walls and cabinets, red-tile floors, a pedestal sink and a claw-foot tub with a shower head.

The lower level includes a garage with parking for one large car or two small ones and a bonus room, reached from outside, that could be used as a studio or yoga room.

Outdoor space: The backyard includes a concrete seating area and a garden with mature lemon and lime trees and a large Norfolk pine. The driveway offers parking for two additional cars, side by side.

Taxes: $22,438 (estimated)

Contact: Claudia Siegel, Compass, 415-816-2811; potrerobeauty.com


This home is in upper Benedict Canyon, in the Beverly Hills Post Office district (with a 90210 ZIP code). The area is a 16-mile drive from downtown Los Angeles and is fringed with nature and its creatures (owls, coyotes and the occasional bobcat). It is two miles below Mulholland Drive and close to a number of hiking trails.

Size: 1,530 square feet

Price per square foot: $1,173

Indoors: Marvin Beck, a local architect, designed the house for himself and his wife. A later owner opened the kitchen to the living room and installed two sets of accordion-fold glass doors in back to dissolve the boundary between interior and exterior. The current owner renovated the master bathroom last year, using slate tile on the walls and a Carrara marble vanity top.

The front door (reached by an exterior flight of stairs) is clad in tongue-and-groove slats that are echoed inside, starting with a floating closet in the foyer that has no visible hardware and opens with a push.

The living room includes a skylight, a wall of built-in drawers and shelves and a fireplace with a combed-basalt surround and hearth. The millwork is echoed in a low partition wall and in the cabinetry in the adjacent kitchen. The golden color is offset by royal blue Viking appliances, patterned glass backsplash tile and honed black granite countertops.

The master is the only room in the house that does not have direct access to the outdoors. It does have book-matched paneled walls and a mirrored closet extending across the entire length.

The guest bedroom has a slatted closet with invisible hardware that runs the length of one wall; it has use of a bathroom with a clerestory window and a walk-in shower faced in the original buttercup-yellow tile. A third bedroom was converted into an open den. Sliding-glass doors in both guest rooms lead to the backyard.

The lower level includes a one-car garage, laundry area and storage.

Outdoor space: The flat, spacious property (unusual in this hilly area) is landscaped with plants that attract hummingbirds and butterflies. A brick patio beyond the folding-glass doors is partially covered by a latticed canopy. Stone-and-gravel paths lead to seating areas in the terraced gardens.

Taxes: $22,438 (estimated)

Contact: Joe Reichling or Boni Bryant, Compass, 323-395-9084; bryantreichling.com

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