Chic Mid-Century Opportunity in the Hills

I saw this home today on Caravan, and really liked it. I was actually on this street to see a different house, but saw the open sign so went in to see what it was. I was pleasantly surprised both by the price point for this location above the Sunset Strip, and the great mix of modern and mid-century finishes throughout the home. First of all, the home's base is polished concrete flooring, which I really like for aesthetics and functionality, but don't often see. The open floor plan surrounded by windows allowing natural light in the property is always a plus, and was punctuated by the cool stone fireplace in the living room. The updated Italian kitchen was clean white with stainless steel appliances and counters. It seemed as if each room had walls of glass that opened up to the outdoors. The home is very private with hillside in the backyard, and there is actually quite a bit of grass and definitely room for a pool. The IPE wood outdoor deck provided a good indoor/outdoor flow for entertaining or simply dining outdoors. The bathrooms could be upgraded a bit, but the bones, space, and location is definitely all there in this one. This is a great opportunity to own a cool mid-century modern home in an A+ location!

1424 Rising Glen, Hollywood Hills

$1,995,000 3 Bed 2.5 Bath 2,436 Sq. Ft/ow 14,843 Lot Sq. Ft

Listing & Photos courtesy of Peter Lorimer - Peter Lorimer Group Estates

If you would like to see this cool mid-century modern property, please feel free to contact us anytime @ 310.600.9172 or email

Renovating the La Brea Shopping District

The area between 1st and 3rd street on La Brea was already very cool in my eyes, as on the east side of the street it housed many great LA shopping haunts. These include famed clothing stores like American Rag, Stussy, and cool sneaker spot Undefeated. There is also high end furniture store Vioski, which houses the very cool Palms Chair and Ottoman (you can see it shot after the break through the glass, which produces a cool effect). Lastly, but certainly not least, is the French style cafe of Cafe Midi, one of my personal favorite spots to have lunch.

Now it seems the people at Madison Marquette are renovating the west side of the street. By looking at the renderings and the history of the buildings on their website, this side is sure to impress. The architecture of the building's houses a great shell for the build out of new and cool retail stores, and further restaurants to add to the area's appeal. The site of an Edsel Automobile dealership in the 1950’s, the building was later headquarters to one of LA’s premier printing shops, Continental Graphics Corporation. Now the architects at Studio One Eleven are highlighting each building’s unique characteristics including wood truss ceilings, exposed brick and steel beams to great fantastic retail spaces. A couple spaces have already been leased, and are looking great. I look forward to following the progress and visiting the great spaces once the renovation is complete.

Pictures by Eric Smilay for Smilay Properties

Clothing Designer James Perse Lists Bird Street Home

Sitting in the highly desirable Bird Streets section of the Hollywood Hills, fashion designer James Perse lists his updated mid-century modern home. The listing accurately describes the home as, "This modern oasis exemplifies the Southern California lifestyle: floor-to-ceiling walls of glass provide abundant light and seamless indoor-outdoor flow." The property was remodeled into an open loft like space with light wood flooring throughout, clean lines, and walls of glass out to the stunning pool area. The home is gated, private, and is on a rare flat third of an acre in a prime location. It does not have a lot of bedrooms (just one), but for the right buyer, the property is exquisite and is not to be missed. The property definitely resembles the owner's clothing brand's aesthetic and stores, and is even decked out in James Perse own Furniture Line, which can be included in the sale or lease should a buyer/leasee desire. If you are a fan of the owner's brand and the lifestyle, now is your chance to really own and live it.

1432 Oriole Dr, Hollywood Hills

$3,750,000 or lease for $14,500/mo 1 Bed 1.5 Bath 2,235 Sq. Ft 15,750 Lot Sq. Ft

Listing & Photos courtesy of Jonah Wilson - Hilton & Hyland

If you would like to visit this property in person, please feel free to contact us anytime @ 310.600.9172 or email

A Peek Inside The Gates of Bel-Air

First things first, the gates are faux gates, and do not stop anyone from coming in. They do however make entering the area appear more grand. I have driven through these gates on numerous occasions as of late to show my listing in middle Bel-Air. These pictures go in order from the entryway through the massive estates of lower Bel-Air up to my listing at 1333 Stradella Road. As you can see, there are some with massive estates with lush rolling lawns , while others are choosing to remodel massive homes that take up the entire property. Speaking of remodeling, it appears that everyone is doing it in this area, as there are about a dozen homes currently undergoing remodeling. This also includes the community repaving roads as well. There are explosive views depending on the location and angle of one's property. The view could be either canyons, city views, or all the way out the majestic ocean. Bel-Air is a premier westside location close to Beverly Hills, Brentwood, UCLA right across Sunset, and provides easy access to the Valley as well. The homes in Bel-Air range in values from $1,000,000 all the way up to about $30,000,000.

Please note that the much publicized recent $85,000,000 sale of the Spelling Estate is South of Sunset in neighboring Holmby Hills, and not Bel-Air.

Enjoy the tour after the break.

The recently reopened Bel-Air Hotel

This may be my dream house! It is a $29,000,000 Mid-Century Estate with it's own vineyard!

The Stone Canyon Reservoir

My listing that is currently in escrow.

If you would like to find a home in Bel-Air, please feel free to contact us anytime @ 310.600.9172 or email We would be happy to assist.

Hollywood Hills Post & Beam Home w/ Resort Like Backyard

On a cul-de-sac just below the desirable "Oaks" neighborhood, is this nicely remodeled post and beam home with a stunning pool backyard. Imagine relaxing out by the pool, and feeling as if you were on vacation at the Viceroy Hotel at your own home. The pool and yard has been professionally landscaped to be an oasis in the city. The home has two master suites, high ceilings, upgraded baths, and a cool floating staircase. The kitchen is also nicely upgraded with all stainless steel appliances (I don't love the multi-colored cabinets, but that can be easily changed). The living room with it's soaring beamed ceilings, hardwood flooring, and mid-century stone fireplace looks fantastic. This a nice updated home in a great location with somewhat of a "special" resort like yard.

5517 Tuxedo Terrace, Hollywood Hills

$1,250,000 2 Bed 2.5 Bath 2,160 Sq. Ft 11,290 Lot Sq. Ft

Listing & Photos courtesy of Holly Purcell- Prudential CA - Los Feliz

If you would like to visit this property in person, please feel free to contact us anytime @ 310.600.9172 or email

Designer Architectural Home Hits Silver Lake

The listing begins by accurately describing the property as, "An exquisite Modernist interpretation designed by renowned architect Roger Sherman, with landscape design by Russ Cletta." I would definitely agree, as the property looks great. After undergoing a complete remodel, this 1963 home has been brought to the current age through it's use of high end finishes, walls of windows, open floor plan, and smooth-trowel plaster exterior. The living room is ideal with it's high ceilings, maple wood flooring, fireplace, and the 25 foot sliding glass door that can be completely opened to bring in the outside. The space opens up to a beautiful pool and nice use of the 5,706 sq. ft lot. With two bedrooms and two baths in the main house, the bottom area is attached, but can be fully self contained with it's own entry and kitchen; can also be used as a great home office, as it is now. There are not too many of these high end modern homes in this eastside location, so is sure to gain a lot of activity from stylish buyers who embrace design and are willing to pay for it.

1937 Cedar Lodge Terrace, Silver Lake

$1,650,000 3 Bed 3 Bath 2,425 Sq. Ft 5,706 Sq. Ft Lot

Listing & Photos courtesy of Ron Holliman - Coldwell Banker-BH North

This looks like a great property that is not to be missed if you like modern architecture. If you would like to see this stunning modern architectural home please feel free to contact us anytime @ 310.600.9172 or email

Traditional Turned Modern Architectural in Mar Vista

Take a look at this traditional 1947 home given an update into a modern architectural by the European Architectural Firm Comina + Olivier Biaggi. The updates, completed in 2008, take the home to a new level with a great open floor plan and stunning high end finishes throughout. The majority of the home is grounded in beautiful Walnut flooring with contrast nicely to the clean white gallery walls, perfect for hanging one's art collection. Downstairs is a wide open floor plan combining the family room drenched in sunlight through the large windows and tall doors, living room with fireplace, and a modern open galley kitchen with a marble island. These all lead out to the peaceful backyard with a deck, fire pit, and hot tub; making this truly an entertainer's home. Upstairs houses the bedrooms, which all come equipped with spa like bathrooms. Lying North of Venice Blvd and West of Centinela, this is a great location just minutes to Venice and the beach.

3645 May St, Mar Vista

$1,590,000 4 Bed 3.5 Bath 2,700 Sq. Ft per owner 5,846 Sq. Ft Lot

Listing and Photos courtesy of Linda Scheft - Coldwell Banker Marina Del Rey

If you would like to see this modern architectural home in a coveted Westside location for yourself, please feel free to contact us anytime @ 310.600.9172 or email Having just sold a modern architectural home in this neighborhood last week, I know all of the available options and have a great sense of the market values, and would be happy to assist you in your housing search.

New Well Maintained Ranch Style Listing; Sylmar

Well maintained classic ranch style home with special sunken living room, featuring a cozy fireplace and soaring post & beam detailed ceiling. The property has great curb appeal with a gate, long driveway, and a well manicured yard. Upon entry one is immediately struck by the openness of the home. The gleaming wood floors set the stage for a large formal living room with white fireplace that merges into a nice dining room area. Step down from there into a special family room with walls of glass allowing natural light and architectural details. The room leads out through sliders to a nice lush backyard, perfect for soaking up the sun or relaxing under the covered area. Three bedrooms, one and a half updated baths, and immaculate. Standard sale, no waiting for bank approval.

14372 Beaver St, Sylmar

$297,000 3 Bed 1.5 Bath 1,519 Sq. Ft 7,150 Lot Sq. Ft.

Listing & Photos by Eric Smilay for Smilay Properties

If you would like to see this well maintained home at a great value in person, please contact us anytime @ 310.600.9172 or email

Timeless Piece of Mid-Century Modern Architecture History

The Jenkyns House, 1960. Josef Van der Kar, AIA Architect, is now available for sale. The listing begins to describe the property by saying, "Like Van der Kar's iconic Wohlstetter House, the residence is lifted from the street and a slanted roofline creates a dramatic soaring effect." Walls of glass on both levels and multiple decks allow for true California indoor/outdoor living and expose relaxing reservoir views. With three bedrooms and an office, this is good size property in a highly desirable location. This is an opportunity to own a timeless post and beam design and a piece of mid-century architecture history.

The furniture captures the 60's vibe nicely as well, don't you agree?

1973 Redesdale Ave, Silver Lake

$1,070,000 3 Bed 2 Bath 1,840 Sq. Ft 8,451 Lot Sq. Ft.

Listing and Photos courtesy of Barry Gray - Deasy Penner & Partners

If you would like to see this mid-century jewel in a great Silver Lake location in person, please contact us anytime @ 310.600.9172 or email If you have always wanted to own a swanky mid-century home, this is a great opportunity to grab a good one.

Modernist Architect Allyn E. Morris's 1958 Home-Studio; Silver Lake

The listing does a good job of describing this interesting architectural property built by Modernist architect Allyn E. Morris in 1958. Here is how the listing describes the home:

"Morris' own home, dramatically cantilevered into a Silver Lake hillside, was described by Julius Shulman as 'the best work Morris ever did.' Trained as an engineer and first apprenticed to Lloyd Wright, Morris melded an industrial aesthetic with organic, Wrightian principles. The studio, with its mezzanine master, 2-story living room & open kitchen, dining area & lower ground-floor office (convert to 2nd bedroom?) opens like a magic glass lantern, affording extraordinary views out to the San Gabriels. Meticulously restored & preserved by the current owner, & retaining original custom bathroom fixtures, mosaic, brickwork, glass and hardware, with an updated kitchen following the original blueprints with approval from Morris himself. Counterweighted windows open the living space to a broad terrace with remarkable ease, an astonishing & ingenious variation on the California open-plan model. Additional historic and current photography, history and description here."

2390 Silver Ridge Ave, Silver Lake

$668,000 1 Bed 2 Bath 1,026 Sq. Ft. 4,800 Sq. Ft. Lot

Listing, Description, and Photos courtesy of Michael D. Phillips - Crosby Doe Associates, Inc

This is an architecturally significant property in a good location with views. There are obvious ways to add another bedroom and bathroom if desired, and one may be able to have this property registered as a LA Cultural/Historic Monument, and thus Mills Act status and the tax benefits that go along with it. If you would like to see this property in person, please contact us anytime @ 310.600.9172 or email

Recent Trip to Palm Springs - Riviera Hotel

I recently went down to Palm Springs for the weekend to visit my grandparents. We stayed at the famed Riviera Hotel. After undergoing a huge renovation on this former 60's hot spot, Noble House Hotels & Resorts re-launched this historic property in October 2008. It is a beautiful property in a stunning setting with a nod to the mid-century aesthetics, but with an updated modern twist. As usual, I should have taken more pictures, but managed to snap a few of the Hotel, room, and pool plus a few about town shots.

I was struck by the pictures over the cabanas at the pool from the 1960's, and the fact that besides the fashion, the scene basically is identical to how it was when I was there in 2011. Some things never change, and I suspect lounging at the pool in the sun will still be happening in 2050.

For more information and images you can visit the Hotel Riviera's Website.

Photos by Eric Smilay for Smilay Properties

Exploring The Los Feliz Village

I had to go to a real estate office today to drop off some paperwork on a deal I just finalized in Los Feliz, and it is such a beautiful day out I took out my camera and started walking. Being a "Hollywood Guy," I have obviously been to the Village here and there, but mostly infrequently so was exploring a little bit. There were many people out and about today on both Hillhurst and Vermont, having lunch, walking, shopping, or riding bikes. There are a ton of restaurants and some boutique shopping in a close proximity to one another, which makes for a great neighborhood feel. In general I really enjoyed the vibe, and look forward to venturing into the area more often.

A notable restaurant is the Alcove Great outdoor area at the Alcove

You can guess that the shopping center next door to the Alcove gets a ton of people trying to park there and go to the Alcove

In this one mixed-use building, there are Italian, Sushi,& Brazilian restaurants, with loft style apartments above.

Pizza spot Sandwich spot

Several small boutique shops from up and coming designers

The Library

Interesting religious neighbor pairing

Took this pic of the Dresden while driving, which I don't recommend, but it produced an interesting effect

View up Hillhurst towards the Hills

Great day for a bike ride

Palm tree lined street just off Hillhurst

Architecture Design Trends for 2011

Everyone wants to keep up with what's in style right? Well I found a great post about 10 Residential design trends on the internet today and wanted to share it. Before we get to the post, briefly my personal design thoughts are the following:

-The mic-mansion trend has died down somewhat, with a return to simplify one's home and cut costs. -Wide open floor plans are in with buyers. -High ceilings are like gold, as it adds so much volume to the space and makes the room feel more grand. -I used to like dark hardwood flooring, but am leaning towards light wood these days. Concrete is also cool. -White walls are great also, as it gives a spacious and clean effect. -People are moving back towards the cities and out of the suburbs to be closer to work and cut down on gas usage. -"Green" energy efficient building techniques are definitely appreciated currently as well with more people paying attention to environmental impacts. -In California, walls of glass leading to outdoor spaces, as well as allowing natural light to flood the property is also desired.

See the detailed list after the break.

Please see a great detailed list by BuilderOnline here.

Viceroy Hotel; Palm Springs

I have spent a fair amount of time at the Viceory Hotel in Palm Springs recently while my new wife and I were planning our wedding there. It is a beautiful property with great design aesthetic, intimate spaces, friendly people, and great service. I wanted to share some of the great design throughout the grounds and interiors of this 57 unit intimate property.

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Some Cool Furniture I like

I just felt like posting some cool pieces that I personally like. Most likely you can find these styles, or very close to them, by several designers at varying prices online. It is so interesting how great furniture laid out well really can transform a blank canvas of a room into something special. Don't you agree? Enjoy...

BARCELONA LOUNGE & CHAIR Design Mies van der Rohe, 1929 African Ramin hardwood frame, leather panels Made in Italy by Knoll

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Tale of Two Sides The 6600 Block of Hollywood Blvd

As Hollywood continues to grow and redevelop I thought it would be interesting to show the transition process. This transition is clearly prevalent in the differences of the type of restaurants, stores, and entertainment venues that reside on the north side of the 6600 block of famed Hollywood Blvd. versus those on south side of the street. Besides Kress (restaurant & nightclub), there are really no name brand stores or modern upscale venues on the south side, but instead the buildings are still occupied by an abundance of tattoo shops, smoke shops, costume stores, and other "mom and pop" retail spots. This is in contrast to the north side, which is flourishing with several newer high end restaurants, name brand retailers, & modern updated architecture. North Side of the Streeet

East Restaurant [flickr size="small" float="left"][/flickr]

American Apparel [flickr size="small" float="left"][/flickr]

Lucky Devils Restaurant [flickr size="small" float="left"][/flickr]

Napolean Beauty Shop [flickr size="small" float="left"][/flickr]

Loteria Restaurant & Formerly Mood Nightclub Being Remodeled Currently [flickr size="small" float="left"][/flickr]

Geisha House Restaurant Front [flickr size="small" float="left"][/flickr]

Essex House Restaurant [flickr size="small" float="left"][/flickr]

Bella Restaurant [flickr size="small" float="left"][/flickr]

South Side of the Streeet

Various Shops Surround Vacant Ritz Theatre [flickr size="small" float="left"][/flickr]

Wig Shop & Others [flickr size="small" float="left"][/flickr]

Small Shoe & Clothing Stores [flickr size="small" float="left"][/flickr]

Supply Store & Others [flickr size="small" float="left"][/flickr]