There's no Hollywood movie about Southern California architect Harry Gesner—at least not yet.
But Gesner's story would be a colorful one. A handsome war hero from the beach at Normandy and a longboard rider of Malibu surf into his 80s, Gesner designed some awe-inspiring modern residences—including the famous Wave House (1957) and his 'flying wing' house (1974) in the Hollywood Hills.
The 'flying wing' reportedly escaped destruction by prior owners by the slimmest margin, and now it has been renovated and selected for a 'Breakfast with the Architect' tour hosted by the L.A. chapter of the American Institute of Architects on Sunday May 18.
Renovated last year under the direction of architect Dean Larkin, the house features superb views down Cahuenga Pass of most of Tinseltown, from the legendary sign to (on a clear day) downtown L.A. in the distance.
Located on a cul-de-sac cliff near the east end of Mulholland Drive, the 'flying wing' has been known as the Mike Hynes House. Hynes requested that Gesner design a home inspired by the form of a bird, and also one that showcased his lumber company's product.
"It's a great example of bringing a house to meet modern needs using something that was built in a different time with different needs," said Carol Caccavale, associate director of the L.A. chapter of AIA. "Most of the floor plan is retained, but he [Larkin] really opened up the house to give it the breath it deserves."
The May 18 event features a pair of 'flying wing' tours, and a chance to meet Gesner himself, set for 11 a.m. and noon. The home is located at 7000 Macapa Drive.
For more information or to purchase tickets for the tour, click here.