Ernst Lubitsch’s Bel-Air estate, an Old Hollywood time capsule, asks $20 million

An aerial view of a Spanish-style mansion
Built in 1934, the Spanish-style mansion maintains its Old Hollywood glamour with crystal chandeliers and ornate fireplaces.
(Anthony Barcelo)

In Bel-Air, a trophy estate built for famed director Ernst Lubitsch just hit the market for $20 million. It’s the first time the home has surfaced for sale in 60 years.

The Spanish-style mansion was built in 1934 for Lubitsch, who directed films such as “Trouble in Paradise,” “Ninotchka” and “To Be or Not to Be.”

The glamorous Old Hollywood style still remains, as the 9,300-square-foot floor plan showcases dramatic style, formal spaces and a series of ornate fireplaces. Rich hardwood and Saltillo tile line the common rooms, which feature rustic beams and crystal chandeliers overhead.


Highlights include a two-story entry, indoor-outdoor office, custom bar and whitewashed kitchen with a splash of Spanish tile. Downstairs, there’s a cantina for entertaining.

Five bedrooms and eight bathrooms complete the two-story floor plan, which opens to multiple loggias and a balcony overlooking the leafy grounds. Outside, the 1-acre estate adds a stone patio, swimming pool and vegetable garden.

Lubitsch, who was born in Berlin, directed 72 movies over four decades, including silent films in the 1910s and sound films starting in the 1920s. Imbuing his projects with a signature style known as the Lubitsch Touch, he received three Academy Award nominations for best director and received an honorary Academy Award in 1946.

Josh Flagg of Douglas Elliman holds the listing.