The Real Deal Los Angeles

Thomas Mann’s custom home marketed as a teardown – preservationists need not apply

The Pacific Palisades abode, built in 1941, is listed for just under $15M
August 17, 2016 03:30PM

Thomas Mann-commissioned house at 1550 San Remo Drive (Credit: Coldwell Banker)

Thomas Mann and his commissioned house at 1550 San Remo Drive (Credit: Coldwell Banker)

Writer Thomas Mann’s J.R. Davidson-designed former residence is now on the market for $15 million. But despite its august history, the property is being promoted as a teardown.

Marketing materials for International Style abode , where the Nobel Prize-winning author lived throughout the 1940s, emphasize its secluded location and expansive lot — with no mention of its illustrious former proprietor.

“Create your dream estate or remodel and expand the existing home in the ultra-exclusive upper Riviera neighborhood,” the Coldwell Banker listing reads.

The agent, Joyce Rey, told the L.A. Times that the true value of the property is the land, despite its design provenance.

“The value is not really in the architecture, I would say,” she said. She added that the seller isn’t interested in welcoming preservationists and journalists to the house.

Mann, a German immigrant, and his wife commissioned the residence from architect J.R. Davidson in 1941. Although it’s not technically designated as a historic-cultural monument, it is listed as a “historic resource” by SurveyLA, another arm of the city’s Office of Historic Resources. [LAT]Cathaleen Chen