Developers Having Little Luck With Nixon’s Former Estate
Nearly two decades after former President Richard Nixon’s “Western White House” was sold to developers, much of the land sits vacant.
The 26-acre seaside estate in Orange County was purchased in 1979 and divided into 16 lots.
Ten of them still await buyers.
The place where Nixon once entertained Soviet leader Leonid Brezhnev is now called Cotton Point Estates.
A few luxury homes dot the street, but many lots are vacant.
The lots cost between $550,000 and $1 million. Real estate agents say the high prices make the neighborhood a tough sell since many of the lots lack ocean views.
“You have to ask yourself why you’d pay about the same price for no view when you can be in Newport Beach on Pelican Hill with a fabulous view,” said Walter Hahn, a real estate consultant.
The weak housing market of the early 1990s didn’t help, developers said. But with the market rebounding, they are hoping for a turnaround. They figure if the lure of history is not enough to bring buyers, the beach just might. The area is one of the region’s few remaining chunks of undeveloped coastline.