One of a Kind

Lightly dressed in period-style furnishings, this sprawling estate has been respectfully left intact since 1929 and recognized as an important contribution to the landscape of Southern California’s Architectural diversity. It was designated a historic landmark in 2012 in part because of the architect, Robert Ainsworth; and partly due to the eccentric owner, Robert Thomas Moore, a businessman and ornithologist who had the home built for his 55,000 birds. In accommodating his precious birds, “R.T.” (as he was known) demanded certain features built in the home such as a lab, library, specimen room, a room in which to perform surgery on the avians, a commercial-size triple door bank vault, a darkroom for film development and fire-proof projection room large enough to hold two, theatre-size 35mm cameras. Professor Moore had secret passages, a monitoring system, call bells and an advanced burglary system for the time.

In addition to large, open public spaces downstairs, a floating staircase leads to four large bedroom suites with dressing rooms and private baths, plus a staff wing of three bedrooms that share a bathroom, several linen and housekeeping closets, laundry shoot and a back staircase leading to a mudroom and kitchen or directly outside to the separate laundry room and another bathroom. A flagstone path leads to a guesthouse with private bath and fully-outfitted kitchen. French doors open from the living room onto an east terrace, adjacent to a covered porch. A cabaret-style pub overlooks the western terrace which offers a gate down a path to a bridge and over an acre of a world-away feeling of oak trees, sage and river stone.