So last week in my daily search on the MLS I came across an Eichler house in Granada Hills; I knew about this cluster of mid-century homes from instagram photo I came across and so when one of these homes finally popped on the market last week I rushed up to see it on Sunday. After some research on the web about Eichler I found about this tract designed by Eichlers contemporary Edward H.Fickett in Reseda. What a find!
This tract of Mid Century properties were built-in the 50’s for the a modern baby boomer family. Simple homes with clean lines and minimalist features were a thing back in the 50’s. These to my understanding were built with features to help sooth the soul of the returning soldiers from World War 2. These post war homes were built to accommodate the new modern family in what came to be the baby boomer generation. Typical families consisted of mom and dad and two kids and these homes were the perfect place to start their families and raise children in quiet peaceful suburban neighborhoods. The San Fernando Valley once an endless dusty valley was transformed in a few short years thanks to William Mulholland. As the famous line in Chinatown if we can’t bring the water to the city we will bring the city to the water. The San Fernando Valley was the way to bring the city to the water. With that in place the Valley was set up to be the ideal place to call home in Southern California.
In the brochures below these homes were touted as a millionaire’s house for the average man and woman who worked in the valley. The layout of these properties represented their vision and their ideal of what it meant to live in sunny Southern California where one can invite the outdoors in. The American dream was alive and well and very attainable to everyone in the 50’s. Eichler and Fickett and other notable architects helped shape the lifestyle and a culture here in California.
Those who flocked here from other parts of the country became the first generation of the sun powered people. These homes with their walls of glass allowed its occupants to welcome in the sun and the elements year around. Eichler and Fickett homes were created to have a seamless relationship with its occupants and the elements outside. The Southern California sun is the biggest draw to those who yearn for the warmth of natural light year around and those lucky few who called and still call these unique properties home know why living in one of these homes is special.
These relics of and era gone by are being dusted off and showcased again to today’s generation of home buyers. I am stoked to see this Mid Century brought back to life, it serves as an example of what visionaries Fickett and Eichler were. These homes are a link to the past and the idyllic San Fernando valley of the 50’s. These properties are true gems and they should be appreciated as they serve as an example of what the California lifestyle and culture is all about.
The California sun, its blue skies and our cool ocean breezes is what makes living here so special and why we our the envy of the country every January 1st. These light filled homes play their part in the mythology that is California. People ask where is the Hotel California? I will tell you it is right in front of your eyes and these time capsules of the 50’s are the Hotel California.
Listing courtesy ofDeasyPenner & Partners