Bob Hope’s golf cart and more to be auctioned for charity

An E-Z-Go golf cart, a Yamaha grand piano, some Lladro figurines. It’s the stuff of two long and remarkable lives — the lives of Bob and Dolores Hope. He lived to be 100, she 102, and together they hosted more than six decades’ worth of presidents and stars at their Toluca Lake and Palm Springs homes.

On Sept. 20 and 21, Julien’s Auctions will sell more than 600 items from the Hopes’ two homes, a collection including antiques, memorabilia and personal property from his show business career and their political and philanthropic work and golf avocations. Beginning Sept. 9, Julien’s will host a public exhibition of the items, re-creating some rooms of the Hope residences in the company’s Beverly Hills gallery.

The proceeds from the auction will benefit two charities: one for veterans, a special cause of the Hopes, and another for feeding the hungry.

PHOTOS: Bob Hope memorabilia auction from Julien’s Auctions Inc.

Bob Hope died in 2003, Dolores in 2011, and the trustees of the Hope estate have been sifting through the vast trove of family items for years. Led by daughter Linda Hope, the estate has donated some of the couple’s belongings to the Smithsonian and some to the Golf Hall of Fame. In 2008, Julien’s auctioned a first batch of Hope memorabilia.


Highlights from the new auction catalog include a set of Bob Hope caricature aluminum golf putters that Julien’s estimates will go for $800 to $1,200 each, a clown painting by Red Skelton (estimate: $2,000 to $4,000) and a photo of Hope with John F. Kennedy inscribed to Hope by the president (estimate: $4,000 to $6,000).

There are also antiques and furnishings from the Hopes’ residences. The Palm Springs home, which was designed by architect John Lautner, went on the market in February for $50 million, and the Toluca Lake home is in the process of being prepared for sale.

Those items include a George I cabinet (estimate $50,000 to $70,000), three Turkish carpets (estimates ranging from $6,000 to $30,000) as well as Waterford crystal.

“Those will come out twice a year when you set the table nice,” Martin Nolan, executive director of Julien’s Auctions, said of the crystal. “Chances are, JFK was entertained on those. The Hopes liked nice things and were well-renowned entertainers. The items tell a story of a different era, before the cellphone, when people got together.”

PHOTOS: Arts and culture in pictures by The Times

Julien’s, which specializes in entertainment and sports, has also managed auctions for Cher, U2, Barbra Streisand and the estate of Marilyn Monroe.

Over his career, Hope appeared in more than 70 films and shorts, hosted the Academy Awards a record 14 times and was the author of 14 books. He married Dolores Reade in 1934 after they met at the Vogue Club in New York, where she was singing. In 69 years together, the Hopes raised four children, traveled overseas to entertain U.S. troops and hosted every American president from Franklin D. Roosevelt to George W. Bush in their homes.

Earlier this year, a yard sale at the Toluca Lake compound attracted throngs of visitors, who lined up to buy Bob Hope logo caps, holiday decorations and even Dolores’ hair dryer. In April, at the Hopes’ church, St. Charles Borromeo in North Hollywood, the family sold table linens, knickknacks and religious items that belonged to the Hopes, who were devoted Catholics. The proceeds of both of those sales went to charities as well.

“Bob Hope was unique in the sense that he was loved by such a wide audience,” Nolan said. “He was a 360-degree entertainer. Our entertainers today, they’re performers. They’re 45-degree entertainers. That’s different. He was a jovial, down-to-earth guy everyone could relate to.”