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The Present Tense


Casa Perfect, Fit for a King

February 28, 2018

Trousdale Estates, sited in the spectacular wooded hills above Sunset Boulevard, is one of Los Angeles’ most architecturally significant neighborhoods. Once part of the famous Doheny Ranch, which claims Greystone Mansion, the enormous Tudor-style residence, as its centerpiece, the 429-acre tract of land emerged as one of the world’s foremost hubs of modernist architecture during the 50's and 60's.


For almost two decades, this lush slice of land became synonymous with the California good life. From its inception, the development was pitched as a destination “above it all,” and master architects such as Wallace Neff, Harold Levitt and Frank Lloyd Wright were commissioned to create audacious and original new structures. This being Beverly Hills, it wasn’t long before the hip, ultra-modern style of living attract Tinseltown’s finest, including Groucho Marx, Jane Fonda, Frank Sinatra and Dean Martin.


Today, California modernism, distinguished by its expansive use of glass and flowing, open-plan layouts seems more relevant than ever, but it wasn’t always so. From the 1970s the free and easy aesthetic fell out of favor, only to be rediscovered this century by a new creative vanguard. Fashion photographer Steven Meisel, who staged a seminal fashion campaign in a Trousdale modern, began the area’s rediscovery; Hedi Slimane, Ellen Degeneres and Kelly Wearstler followed suit.


Given its pedigree, both as an incubator for a typical California style of architecture and as a storied, celebrity-filled enclave, Trousdale Estates was the perfect choice for the second iteration of Casa Perfect, of our Southern Californian gallery. Sited behind a winding driveway, the newly renovated residence is nothing short of the mythical California pad imagined in vivid celluloid dreams.


Designed in 1958 by architect Rex Lotery, the home features floor-to-ceiling windows framing panoramic views of Los Angeles, a rolling green lawn that meets a Hockneyesque swimming pool and meticulously restored interior details including marble fireplaces and coffered ceilings.


What’s more, this Casa Perfect also claims one of the most illustrious celebrity pedigrees in the city. In 1967, the estate was purchased by Elvis Presley, who lived there with wife Priscilla and daughter Lisa Marie for 6 years. They were productive years for The King, who released key chart-topping material whilst in residence, including the songs Suspicious Minds, Kentucky Rain and Hound Dog.


With the arrival of the new Casa Perfect, which retains many of the original details found in Elvis’ day, the historic estate is poised for its next reinvention. Like its predecessor, the residence/gallery will feature some of The Future Perfect’s favorite designers, as well as SoCal exclusives and one-of-a-kind exhibitions.