Crafted in the early 1960s by largely unsung modernist architect Edward Fickett — best remembered for designing Tower Records’ iconic West Coast flagship store on Sunset Boulevard, as well as the original Sands Hotel in Las Vegas — this eye-catching residence is surrounded by older 1920s-era homes created by Wallace Neff, Myron Hunt and Robert Farquhar. Now the post-and-beam showpiece has popped up for sale in the affluent San Gabriel Valley suburb of San Marino, asking a speck under $8.6 million.
“At the time, it was an anomaly to build a modern home in this neighborhood,” says Brent Chang of Compass, who is co-listing the property with Nina Hsu of Coldwell Banker Realty. “But it was very well-received and winner of a National American Institute of Architects Award. Coincidentally, the original owner had the same name — Richard Keating — as another well-known but contemporary architect, who lives in San Marino in a significant modern home he designed.”
Nestled amid a fenced and gated parcel of land spanning over 1.5 acres, right next door to Thornton Gardens, the single-level structure is known as the “Keating House,” and features six bedrooms and an equal number of baths spread across a little more than 5,600 square feet of living space. There are built-ins, high wood-beam ceilings, brick-clad walls and large expanses of glass throughout; but Chang notes that some cosmetic changes made by a previous owner in the ’80s obscured many of the original design elements, which still remain hidden underneath their current coverings.
Among the many highlights: a sunken fireside living room and formal dining room, along with a family room spotlighted by a floor-to-ceiling fireplace with a floating hearth. An adjacent kitchen is outfitted with a curving breakfast bar, stainless appliances, pass-through windows to the outdoors and an accompanying breakfast nook, the master suite has a large tiled bath equipped with dual vanities, a vintage-style soaking tub and separate shower, and elsewhere is an office and a mirrored gym.
Outdoors, the Edward Koizumi-landscaped grounds are interwoven with grassy lawns, gardens, water features and statuary, and host a covered lanai running the entire length of the house, plus a pool and spa flanked by a Japanese-inspired guesthouse sporting Shoji-style screens and a folded plate roof bordered by clerestory windows. There’s also a desirable north/south tennis court, and plenty of room for parking up to 15 vehicles in the garage, carport and motorcourt.