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Midcentury Modern home built for actress Marian Marsh trades hands in Palm Desert

Marian Marsh’s former Palm Desert home
A quirky home built for Old Hollywood star Marian Marsh has sold in Palm Desert for $823,250.

Plenty of big names are tied to the high-end homes of Palm Desert. Frank Sinatra kept a hideout in the rocky hills. Jerry Weintraub had architect Guy Dreier build him a contemporary mansion in the area.

A few blocks away from the main drag, another home with celebrity pedigree just sold for $823,250.

Cliff Henderson, the city’s co-founder, built the Midcentury Modern-style house in 1953 for his wife, “Svengali” actress Marian Marsh.

Spanning half an acre, the estate offers quirky touch-ups both inside and out. Period chandeliers and decorative block walls fill the interior, and outside, a pink pagoda gate marks the entry to a detached office.


Concrete floors and wood ceilings sandwich the living spaces, which include a dining room, center-island kitchen and expansive living room with a stone-wall fireplace. The 3,376 square feet of living space includes three bedrooms and 2.5 bathrooms.

A wood-covered yoga studio opens outside, where a hedged backyard holds a pool, a spa and a covered patio.

Marsh, who died in 2006 at 93, appeared in her first film, “The Sophomore,” in 1929 before starring in “Svengali” alongside John Barrymore two years later. Her other credits include “Five Star Final,” “Crime and Punishment” and “The Black Room.”


Her conservation and environmental efforts were so vital to Palm Desert that Oct. 17, 2015, was designated Marian Marsh-Henderson Day.

Richard Bartholomew and Gregg Fletcher of the Agency held the listing. Connie Kashkawol of HK Lane Real Estate represented the buyer. | Twitter: @jflem94