An artist’s soul in grand style

Times Staff Writer

Norman Waitt, co-founder of personal computer maker Gateway Inc. and an executive producer of the film “My Big Fat Greek Wedding,” lives and works in Omaha but vacations in Montecito.

For at least a few years, though, his idea of a vacation has been to develop a 12,000-square-foot house on almost 3 acres in Montecito with mountain and ocean views.

The French Normandy estate, called Belle Epoque, has been described as atelier style. In French, atelier means “workshop or studio of an artist or designer.” The house is far from being a simple workshop, however, with its antique light fixtures, glass mosaics and curved French door panes.

Belle Epoque is a mix of informal and formal rooms. Family spaces open to one another to encourage togetherness. The formal living room is large enough for entertaining but intimate enough for everyday use. The dining room is designed in the round, so guests can see one another.


The seller-developer is also an executive producer of the new film “Because I Said So,” starring Diane Keaton and Mandy Moore. He has produced albums for David Crosby and owns dozens of radio stations across the Midwest.

About this house: Outside the home, there is a formal garden, which is lined with antique ornaments; a redwood forest area; a meditation garden; a wildflower meadow; and a pool and a spa.

Asking price: $24.8 million

Size: The 12,000-square-foot house is on 2.76 acres.

Features: There is a master-bedroom suite, three other family bedroom suites, an attached guest apartment, a cabana and a conservatory.

Where: Montecito

Listing agent: Rebecca Riskin, Village Properties, Montecito, (805) 565-8863


To submit a candidate for Home of the Week, please send color interior and exterior photos with caption information on a CD and a detailed 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. E-mail questions to homeof