The Home That Ignited Richard Neutra’s Architectural Career Is Up for Sale

The Home That Ignited Richard Neutra’s Architectural Career Is Up for Sale

By Kathryn M.
Neutra designed the Lovell Health House to take full advantage of its sunny site high in the hills of Los Angeles.

For the first time since 1961, Richard Neutra’s Lovell Health House has resurfaced on the market. The trailblazing architect designed the five-bedroom residence, once described as "a Mondrian painting come to life," for a Los Feliz hillside in 1929—and the home quickly galvanized his career.

The home quickly grabbed global attention for its prefabricated steel cage frame, and it was included in the Museum of Modern Art’s 1932 Modern Architecture exhibition, which ignited Neutra’s long-lasting career.

A precursor to the Kaufmann House, the 4,807-square-foot dwelling was commissioned by physician and naturopath Dr. Philip Lovell. The Lovell Family’s health-conscious lifestyle inspired the design of the home, which is replete with spacious outdoor porches and large windows that invite in the California sunshine.

Neutra designed the three-level residence for Dr. Philip Lovell. The architect catered to the family’s naturopathic interests by creating voluminous interiors filled with daylight.

Since the home’s completion nearly a century ago, it has been recognized as an International Style landmark, and it has even appeared in several Hollywood films, including LA Confidential and Beginners. Not too long ago, the current owners started opening up the dwelling for public tours, and now, it’s up for sale.

Given (what was then) a generous budget of $58,000, Neutra tapped into his interest in industrial fabrication and selected a light steel frame for the home. He also experimented with gunnite, a type of spray-on concrete. Large panels of operable glass fill the interior with natural light.

"This home is a piece of artwork," says Marci Kays, one of the two real estate agents at The Agency who is representing the sellers. She says the current residents, who have owned the home for nearly six decades, are looking for a buyer who cherishes the architectural significance of the property.

The property is "just pure magic," says Josh Gorrell, one of the home's current residents. "Neutra was very purposeful about everything. He was a science-minded architect who was also dedicated to the physiological aspect of human beings."

Kays and her colleague Jonathan Mogharrabi don't foresee the property sitting on the market for long, especially given the views. With more than half an acre, the property is a rare city gem. "The view is the epitome of  Los Angeles—the lush landscape, and the palm trees," says Mogharrabi. "It’s Jurassic Park-esque." Keep scrolling to see more of this historic Los Angeles residence.

Before listing the Lovell Health House for sale, Gorrell, alongside Ken Topper—who also lives in the property and whose parents acquired the dwelling in 1960—gave tours so that the public could experience the architecturally significant design.

While the home underwent alterations from 1929 to 1940, many of its original materials remain. One of the primary living spaces frames picturesque views of the city and surrounding hills—including Griffith Observatory in the distance.

Spread across three levels, the home features an open floor plan with a double-height living room and walls of steel-framed windows.

Shelves spanning the entire length of a hallway provide plentiful storage. A built-in sofa offers a cozy spot to rest and soak up the sunshine.

Just off the living area, the dining room sits in a window-wrapped corner. A soothing shade of green adds a subtle pop of color against the home’s primary cream palette.

A bar provides space for entertaining.

In total, the home offers five bedrooms, many of which are encased by steel-framed windows.

A custom-built office sits adjacent to a large brick fireplace.

The living room overlooks sweeping views of Los Angeles.

At night, the Lovell Health House glows among its verdant, jungle-like landscape.

The Lovell House, located at 4616 Dundee Drive in Los Angeles, CA, is currently listed by Marci Kays and Jonathan Mogharrabi of The Agency. The selling price is available upon request.

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