It isn’t often that a house possesses both a Hollywood pedigree and a prolific film resume, but such a property has just hit the market! Located at 880 La Loma Rd. in Pasadena’s prestigious Lower Arroyo neighborhood, the landmark manse is being offered by Sally Forster Jones and Joshua Smith of Compass for $8.495 million. The historic listing marks the first time the home has been available for sale in several decades!
The sprawling English Tudor Revival was the work of Sylvanus Marston and Garrett Van Pelt, prominent local architects who also designed Arden Villa from “National Lampoon’s Vacation,” the Gilmore mansion from “Gilmore Girls,” and the A.L. Garford House from “Twins.”
Constructed in 1916 for $25,000, the estate was commissioned by Samuel S. Hinds, a prominent lawyer who enjoyed acting in stage productions on the side and was one of the original founders of the esteemed Pasadena Playhouse. In 1929, Hinds was bankrupted by the stock market crash that led to the Great Depression, setting him on a late-in-life career trajectory that turned out to be quite fortuitous. Destitute at the age of 54, he abandoned the law to try his hand at show business. As he expressed to Picture Play magazine, “I thought it was a good time to change my profession. I decided I would become a movie actor. I had nothing to lose, for I had lost everything.” And it was not long before Hollywood came a-calling! Hinds went on to appear in over 200 films before his death in 1948, most notably portraying Pa Bailey, father of George Bailey (James Stewart), in the 1946 classic “It’s a Wonderful Life.”
His former mansion has been almost as prolific onscreen. Of the unique property, realtor Josh Smith said, “Sally and I have been through thousands of homes throughout our career, but the feeling you get when you walk into 880 La Loma is palpable. It’s truly a special place, you get that feeling the moment you walk through that gate.”