Randy Solakian Showcases Architect Bertram Goodhue’s Historical ‘La Cabana’ Estate

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Bertram Grosvenor Goodhue was an eminent American architect whose designs for the 1915 Panama-California Exposition in San Diego ignited California’s Spanish Colonial Revival movement. Having traveled in Mexico when he was younger, Goodhue’s knowledge of Spanish and Mediterranean architecture and Middle Eastern garden tradition was greatly augmented during an extensive international trip in 1902, with good friend John Waidon Gillespie.

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Living room of “El Furiedes”

In 1906, Goodhue designed “El Furiedes” for Gillespie, which, with its famous Persian gardens, is now considered to be one of Santa Barbara’s greatest Mediterranean-style estates. The Goodhues were frequent visitors to El Furiedes and Santo Barbara, and became members of its elite social circle.

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To establish residency after the San Diego exposition, Goodhue purchased 14 acres of prime Montecito property with intentions to build a grand Mediterranean-style mansion; though, his plans changed. Instead, in 1920 he restored and expanded a 19th century one-room adobe, which had been a hay barn for Mexican settlers, and named it “La Cabana” (“The Cabin”). His construction––in adobe blocks with a stucco, whitewashed finish and indigenous sandstone––maintained the adobe’s humble character.

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Goodhue kept La Cabana as his homestead, along with an office in New York, until his death in 1924. La Cabana has been treated well by all principals and caretakers since then, with several renovations, upgrades, and improvements over the years, from the smallest details, such as new mailboxes and an address marker for the tree-lined entry drive, to on all-new pool area–with a fountain feature, powder room with radiant floor heating, outdoor kitchen, and Sonos and Wi-Fi systems–new roof and copper rain gutters on the majority of the house; extensive remodeling and customizing of the original wing; and complete upgrades in the kitchen, bathrooms, and many improvements to the property in general, transforming this historic space into one that is contemporary and exciting.

The property is now listed at $6,750,000.

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Click here to see the listing.

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