Bradbury House

Proudly presenting the Bradbury House, historic-cultural monument #594. Built in 1923, this two-story residence exhibits character-defining features of Spanish Colonial Revival architecture. This exceptional home is located in the Pacific Palisades neighborhood of Los Angeles and is situated on a bluff overlooking the Pacific Ocean. The Bradbury House is a fourteen-room, 5,198 square-foot single-family residence constructed of adobe brick on a concrete foundation with stuccoed walls and recessed casement windows. The roof is covered in terra cotta tiles with the main section hipped whereas the two wings, which shelter the rear patio, are gabled.

The Bradbury House follows a “U”-shaped plan with the main two-story façade featuring large expanses of stucco punctuated asymmetrically with windows and balconies. The main entrance is off-center to the south. The entire opening is surrounded by eighteen inches of four-by-four inch blue glazed tile and an outer row of six-by-six inch tiles with a sycamore design. Above the entry is a second floor balcony with nine carved wooden brackets, wrought-iron balusters, and a round wooden handrail. The French doors that open onto the balcony are again surrounded by two rows of glazed tiles. The seven-foot wide path leading to the front door from the street is made of soft-fired red clay pavers set between a row of concrete at each side.  A one-story stucco garden wall connects at the northwest corner to the main wall that surrounds the property. The wall, topped with a double row of clay tiles has a saw-toothed coping detail and has an opening in its center giving access to the path running parallel to the front of the house.

Attached to the house is a two-story garage/guest house wing. In the 1970's it was altered into a somewhat more contemporary interpretation of the original Spanish Colonial Revival style. The motor court area in front of the garage/guest house is paved with brick set in a herring-bone pattern. The rear of the house is very plain, with large expanses of stucco. The only feature on the south end is a two-story plaster chimney, set off-center to the gable-end. The Moorish-styled patio nestled between the two wings of the house is elaborately decorated when compared with the rest of the house.

Surrounding the property is a six-foot stucco wall, flush with the sidewalk and topped with a coping of flat terra-cotta tiles set in a side-facing-gable configuration. The swimming pool is locating on the adjacent parcel and  is separated from the house by a low stucco wall topped with used-brick.

Some notable features of the interior of the house include a two-story entry hall, a main staircase made of oak with a carved railing, a living room with a twelve-foot ceiling and a carved oak mantel, exposed-beam ceilings in most rooms, and a large kitchen with counters and cabinets in quarter-sawn oak.

The garage and servant’s structure were not a part of the original construction and were altered in 1971-72 by architect Wallace Neff. The interior was to some extent refurbished by architect Carl Day in the mid-1970's.

This spectacular home was designed by John W. Byers, a noted Spanish Colonial Revival architect of the 1920's. The house was the first major commission given to Byers and the first of six adobe homes he would build. Largely a self-taught architect, Byers was a major proponent of Spanish Colonial Revival designs and use of adobe and wrote many articles espousing these architectural designs for publications such as the California Arts & Architecture as well as the Los Angeles Times. Lewis L. Bradbury Jr., son of a prominent mining and real estate tycoon, enlisted Byers to design the Spanish Colonial Revival house on the model of the El Greco museum in Toledo, Spain. The building’s courtyard a close replica of the museum’s, even down to the design of the tiles. David Gehbard and Robert Winter in their seminal guide to Los Angeles architecture identify 22 notable residential buildings by Byers. The Bradbury House is identified as being “instrumental in establishing [Byers’] reputation as a Spanish Revivalist.” The subject building was also highlighted in a number of architectural periodicals, including The Architect and Engineer, California Architecture, and Pacific Architect.

A very special home and a unique chance to own a piece of Los Angeles History.








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