Like most of the estates in the upscale Old Las Palmas area, it was well hidden behind 12-foot fences and hedges, so I didn’t really know what to expect.
Once inside the gates of the famous 425 W. Via Lola address, I couldn’t help but notice that the driveway entrance to this spanish-style California Ranch home was large enough to accommodate at least a half dozen beemers or hummers or whatever the celebs are driving these days. Hybrids, I imagine. But then, you’d expect a compound made up of three huge homes, three enormous pools and three gigantic views to have a decent-size driveway. What I didn’t expect is what I found, once inside the home.
Entering the courtyard, I barely noticed the modern double doors. But stepping into the living room, the original terrazzo flooring, the massive stone fireplace, the vaulted ceilings and the walls of glass put a big smile on my face. This was a Mid-Century modern gem masquerading as a Spanish Hacienda.
I was told that the Sheldon’s had remodeled the exterior of the home to match the Spanish-style motif of the other adjacent homes that made up the entire compound. If that weren’t enough of a surprise, I learned that the legendary, Arthur Elrod had designed the modern interior of the home.
The compound includes three homes, available together or seperately. This home, known as the Sidney Sheldon Estate was where he lived and where he reportedly wrote his 18 best-selling novels. Sheldon was also the creator of the popular 1960s television show “I Dream Of Jeannie”.
In the 1970s, I remember standing in line at the downtown Thrifty Drug Store (no longer there) behind Jeannie co-star Larry Hagman, who, from the items in his basket, was obviously making a party run. I can’t help but wonder now if he was heading back to the Sheldon’s for margaritas and martinis.
The asking price for The Sidney Sheldon Estate is $1,700,000. It can be purchased seperately or along with the other two homes that make up this amazing compound. The former Rockefeller Estate, which is located next door, has an asking price of $1,900,000. The Running Water Estate, across the street, is on the market for $2,200,000.
The three homes are shown, by appointment only.