You Can Own This Architecture Icon’s Personal L.A. Home for $5 Million
It’s rare to own a home from one of the greats of modernist architecture, especially one that remains true to the architect’s original design. It’s even more extraordinary to own one designed by the architect as his own home.
Archived by the L.A. Conservancy as “Koenig House 2,” a 3,000-square-foot residence in L.A.’s Brentwood neighborhood that midcentury master Pierre Koenig built in 1985 as his personal residence is now available for $4.995 million. Aaron Kirman and Dalton Gomez of AKG | Christie’s International Real Estate hold the listing.
Koenig died in 2004 at the age of 78, and his wife Gloria owned the carefully maintained home until 2017, when it was sold for almost $3.5 million. The kitchen and bathrooms have since been updated in a manner that respects and complements Koenig’s original designs.
A series of interconnected cubic volumes that step back from the street, the home represents the late-career apotheosis of the innovative architect’s design ethos and his vision for residential architecture in the 21st century. Koenig was an early adopter and champion of industrial, prefabricated, and economical materials, and his designs often made use of natural ventilation.
The three-bedroom and two-and-a-half-bath home’s I-beam steel-frame armature supports vast expanses of glass and a 30-foot ceiling in the central atrium that is crisscrossed by a geometric assemblage of bridges and staircases. Beyond the secured gates and serene courtyard entry, the main-floor living spaces include a fireside lounge, a cozy, shelf-lined library nook, and a sleekly updated, open-plan kitchen and dining area that spills out to the swimming pool.
The 30-foot interior atrium creates a vertical space where, on hot days, warm air rises and escapes through the atrium to cool the home. Clerestory windows shower the atrium with natural light, and interior walls of glass allow the sunlight to filter into the upper-level bedrooms. And because the Koenigs were music lovers, ceiling heights were carefully planned for an optimal environment for listening to and playing music.
At the back, between the house and a detached garage, a courtyard patio has a small swimming pool with an automated cover. The back of the garage cleverly peels open to create a huge, covered patio for alfresco entertaining.
Koenig is best known for Case Study House #22 (the Stahl House) in the Hollywood Hills, often cited as one of the most photographed houses in the world. The previous year, he designed the less dramatically sited yet no less innovative Case Study House #21 (Bailey House), also in the Hollywood Hills, for which he and Gloria posed for promotional photographs.