Back in the 1960s, after she became disenchanted with fame and its drawbacks, “Vertigo” star Kim Novak packed her bags, loaded up a van and left the bright glare of Hollywood at the apex of her career. She first settled in a blufftop oceanfront refuge in the affluent enclave of Carmel Highlands, and though she’s long since decamped Carmel in favor of Oregon, where the accomplished artist is now whiling away her days painting, Novak’s former coastal compound on exclusive Spindrift Lane is now on the market with a $12.5 million price tag, complete with one-of-a-kind vistas of the enchanting scenic coastline.
“Obviously, the property is right on the ocean; you can’t get any closer,” says listing agent Jonathan Spencer of Compass. “It’s built directly into a granite shelf, and the drama there is unbelievable. You can see whales migrating and pelicans soaring around the bend, and I’ve seen humpback whales breaching from the windows in the master bedroom. It’s really just the majesty of being so close you can almost touch it; this is your own front-row view into the Pacific.”
Perched atop a cliffside promontory — between Carmel-by-the-Sea and Big Sur, near Yankee Point Beach and about 8 miles from Pebble Beach — the picturesque property is straight out of a Hitchcock film, resting on a 2-acre parcel of land accessed via a security gate and private road. Affectionately referred to by Novak as the “Gull House,” the estate where she resided for 11 years, from 1961-73, currently features a little over 2,000 square feet of living space spread across a one-bedroom, one-and-a-half-bath main house built in 1957, along with a one-bedroom, one-bath guesthouse Novak herself had constructed in 1967.
Included in the sale: approved plans that call for razing the guesthouse and garage, and replacing the structures with a brand-new 4,300-square-foot, three-bedroom abode hosting a trio of bathrooms. The house would be situated in the upper portion of the lot, above where the guesthouse now sits, and be built in the same architectural design as the current main house, which would be kept for use as a guesthouse/artist studio.