A home base for half of the Greene team

Times Staff Writer

Charles Sumner Greene and his wife, Alice, spent four months on an overseas honeymoon in 1902 that changed their lives.

He returned to the Pasadena architectural practice he shared with his brother, Henry Mather Greene, with a new interest in creating homes reflecting the Arts and Crafts movement in Britain.

His wife came back with the desire to build their personal residence in that style on a knoll overlooking the Arroyo Seco. The two-bedroom, one-bath Oakholm, on Arroyo Terrace, became the first of 11 Greene and Greene homes to be built in the Park Place Tract, which has the greatest concentration of the brothers’ work in any neighborhood. The Gamble House, the James Culbertson House and the Duncan-Irwin House are among nearby Greene and Greene properties.

About this house: Not long after it was built in 1902, the house was expanded to accommodate Charles Greene’s growing family and staff. It was not only a residence but also an in-home design studio and experimental laboratory where Charles Greene tested wall treatments and colors.


As time passed, the half-octagon-shaped living room remained in place, but the octagonal studio was expanded to two floors. The studio, once accessed only by ladder, is still one of the most interesting rooms, primarily for its history. Greene’s workshop was turned into a kitchen. In 1998, Greene and Greene expert Randell Makinson helped restore the house. A stucco-pillared, vine-covered pergola, designed by Charles Greene but not built until later, was constructed over the garage. The kitchen was remodeled, and the house has been seismically retrofitted.

Asking price: $2,799,000

Size: The house has seven bedrooms, including Charles Greene’s former studio, and five bathrooms in 4,138 square feet, in addition to the basement and single-car garage. The lot size is 6,800 square feet.

Features: The house is distinctive for its interior use of various woods and other natural materials and for its stone and clinker-brick street-side retaining wall. The plumbing, electrical and kitchen appliances have been upgraded. The house also has central heating and air conditioning. There are four fireplaces, a library, a wine cellar and a butler’s pantry.

Where: Pasadena

Listing agent: Lynne Gordon, Dickson Podley Realtors, (626) 243-4222, and Bob Horgan, Sotheby’s International Realty, (626) 396-3989

To submit a candidate for Home of the Week, please send color interior and exterior photos on a CD with caption information and a description of the house, including what makes the property unusual, to Ruth Ryon, Real Estate Section, Los Angeles Times, 202 W. 1st St., Los Angeles, CA 90012.