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Inside Audrey Hepburn’s former home in Holmby Hills

Nadja Beschetnikova
April 9, 2018

Celebrity owners are no surprise on the estate market in Los Angeles area. The two-storey Colonial Revival estate in Holmby Hills continuously sheltered so many Hollywood stars one after the other for decades that it could become a museum.

Instead, the mansion, located in the celebrity-infused neighborhood of Holmby Hills, has been put on the market for $14 million in 2017.

The property on Delfern Drive attracted silver-screen royalty such as David Niven, Audrey Hepburn, Mia Farrow and, most recently, Eva Gabor.
The star of «Green Acres» bought the estate in the mid-‘70s and lived there for two decades.

In fact, the property is officially hailed as the "Eva Gabor Estate." After Gabor's death in 1995, the home was reportedly sold to its current owners for more than $2 million.The Hungarian-American actress was one of the home’s longest residents.

Among the first residents of the home on Delfern Drive was actress Anita Louise and her first husband, producer Buddy Adler. When Adler died in 1960 and Louise remarried, she leased the house out to Hepburn and her first husband, filmmaker Mel Ferrer. The couple was married from 1954 to 1968.

These were probably the most glorious years in her acting career. With Roman Holiday, which earned her the 1953 best-actress Oscar, Audrey Hepburn became not just a major Hollywood star but also a living fashion icon. In 1955 she starred in the colossal War and Peace, filmed as well in Rome, at Cinecittà. And, of course, one of her most memorable and identifiable role - Holly Golightly in Breakfast at Tiffany’s - belongs to this period of time.

Though Truman Capote, on whose novella the film was loosely based on, hated Hepburn in the lead part, the film brought her another Oscar nomination and set Hepburn on her 60s Hollywood course.

The house was designed in 1938 by the man often called the architect to the stars, Paul Williams. He was one of the most in-demand Hollywood architects of his time. During a half-century in practice, the architect left a legacy of close to 3,000 residential and commercial projects worldwide.

With such an impressive roster of celebrity tenants, it's no surprise that the house features some of the most luxurious amenities we've ever seen.

Located in the affluent neighborhood of Holmby Hills, the 650 square metre house boasts six bedrooms, four bathrooms, a tennis court, private gardens, a large pool, and a guest house with kitchen and detached staff quarters/office with living, dining, kitchen, one bedroom and two baths. 

The elegant facade bears the hallmarks of Williams’ interpretation of the traditional vernacular: four columns, a two-story portico, an ornate frontispiece above the front door as well as shutters and flower boxes.

While interiors have changed considerably since Hepburn called it home, the grand foyer with a curved staircase and enormous chandelier still evokes 1950s Hollywood glamour.

The house includes a formal living room with fireplace and dedicated library nook, dining room, family room, kitchen, breakfast room and two staff bedrooms on the first floor. Upstairs are four bedrooms, including the master suite.

Some rooms have glass walls overlooking mature gardens.The interiors offer convenience, comfort and an increased sense of privacy.

Sitting on 1.1 acres with sprawling lawns, gardens, patios, the estate is a perfect setting for Hollywood parties. Large picture windows let in light and create a visual connection to the lush landscaping surrounding the estate.

The house has several dining areas, and gourmet kitchen. Looking at Hepburn’s effortlessly slim figure (the actress only weighed 88 pounds), it’s hard to believe, that kitchen was one of the most significant places in the houses for her. But the star loved to cook healthy and elaborate meals.

Her youngest son Luca Dotti, wrote in his book, Audrey at Home: Memories of My Mother's Kitchen, that his mother always had a plate of spaghetti al pomodoro when she arrived home from a trip.

Whoever's lucky enough to move into Hepburn's home will be able to host the most glamorous dinner parties imaginable. There are plenty of opportunities here, with an extravagant formal dining room, and a quaint breakfast room.